Fixed mortgage rates reverse course, show slight uptick


(Photo by Jason Reed/Reuters)

Fixed mortgage rates reversed five weeks of declines with a slight uptick last week, according to the latest data released Thursday by Freddie Mac.

The 30-year fixed-rate average edged up to 4.14 percent with an average 0.5 point. It was 4.12 percent a week ago and 3.91 percent a year ago.

The 15-year fixed-rate average increased to 3.23 percent with an average 0.5 point. It was 3.21 percent a week ago and 3.03 percent a year ago.

Hybrid adjustable rate mortgages continued their decline. The five-year ARM average slid to 2.93 percent with an average 0.4 point. It was 2.96 percent a week ago and 2.74 percent a year ago. The five-year ARM average has remained below 3 percent for the past three weeks.

The one-year ARM average dropped to 2.4 percent with an average 0.4 point. It was 2.41 percent a week ago.

“Mortgage rates were little changed amid a week of light economic reports,” Frank E. Nothaft, Freddie Mac vice president and chief economist, said in a statement.

“Of the few releases, real GDP was revised down to [minus]-1.0 percent growth in the first quarter of 2014. ADP Research Institute estimated the private sector added 179,000 jobs in May, which followed a slight downward revision of 5,000 jobs in April. Meanwhile, the Institute for Supply Management reported the manufacturing industry saw a slight acceleration in monthly growth for May.”

With rates headed up, mortgage applications declined for the second week in a row, according to the latest data from the Mortgage Bankers Association.

The market composite index, a measure of total loan application volume, fell 3.1 percent. The refinance index dropped 3 percent, while the purchase index sank 4 percent.

The refinance share of mortgage activity showed a slight uptick, accounting for 53 percent of all applications.

Kathy Orton is a reporter and Web editor for the Real Estate section. She covers the Washington metropolitan area housing market. Previously, she wrote for the Sports section. She came to The Washington Post in 1996 from the Los Angeles Daily News. She also worked at the Cincinnati Post. She is the author of the book, “Outside the Limelight: Basketball in the Ivy League.”
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