With the bounce started earlier in the week, mortgage rates didn’t suffer any further damaging effects this week and instead maintained a steady, slow path into the 4 percent territory after jumping dramatically earlier. The 30-year fixed mortgage bellwether is now firmly entrenched in the high 3 percent figures with bargains being discussed at the 3.87 percent level and most people being offered 4 percent now. Lenders are clearly retrenching and readjusting to the new “norm” of finally seeing figures with a number 4 in front of them for a change.
However, many market watchers are still expecting further volatility in the rate average fields. This is due to the rapid movement that has already occurred and the history of patterns that high jumps are soon followed by dramatic falls. Just when people think everything has stabilized, the rate averages in 2012 and 2013 have proved many prognosticators to be flat out wrong again and again. In fact, more people are frankly putting reliance on a magic 8-ball approach than any kind of studied estimate of performance for Friday and Monday following. So, in short, the fun isn’t over yet. Buckets of cold water are still expected to be held in reserve for more surprises next week.
Friday will cause some ripples in itself already because of the federal Employment Situation Report coming out. This data will be ruminated over to make assumptions about whether the Federal Reserve decides the time of applying the economic brakes has arrived or not. Weak employment data will prolong that decision until later in the year. Good job data will argue for cessation to quantitative easing activities sooner.
So, to recap, the 30-year fixed mortgage rate average is clearly at 4 percent now, and the 15-year counterpart sits at 3.25 percent. The FHA/VA loan has finally moved up, ranging from 3.25 to 3.75 percent, and the 5-year adjustable rate mortgage average is still at 2.625 to 3.25 percent.