Freddie Mac has released the results of its Primary Mortgage Market Survey (PMMS) in which the 30-year fixed-rate mortgage (FRM) averaged 5.03 percent with an average 0.7 point for the week ending March 12, 2009, down from last week when it averaged 5.15 percent. Last year at this time, the 30-year FRM averaged 6.13 percent.
The 15-year FRM this week averaged 4.64 percent with an average 0.7 point, down from last week when it averaged 4.72 percent. A year ago at this time, the 15-year FRM averaged 5.60 percent.
Five-year Treasury-indexed hybrid adjustable-rate mortgages (ARMs) averaged 4.99 percent this week, with an average 0.6 point, down from last week when it averaged 5.08 percent. A year ago, the 5-year ARM averaged 5.58 percent.
One-year Treasury-indexed ARMs averaged 4.80 percent this week with an average 0.5 point, down from last week when it averaged 4.86 percent. At this time last year, the 1-year ARM averaged 5.14 percent.
Average commitment rates should be reported along with average fees and points to reflect the total cost of obtaining the mortgage.
"Mortgage rates had room to ease this week following news of a weaker jobs market, which may slow consumer spending and keep inflation at bay," said Frank Nothaft, Freddie Mac vice president and chief economist. "The 30-year fixed-rate mortgage rate remains very close to January's all time recorded low of 4.96 percent. Indeed, mortgage rates have drifted up and down only by about one-quarter of a percent in the first months of this year.
"Given the recent historically low mortgage rates, homeowners have a strong incentive to try and refinance. For instance, the Bureau of Economic Analysis reports that the effective mortgage rate for loans outstanding in the fourth quarter of 2008 was around 6.2 percent, or almost 1.2 percentage points above this weeks average rate for 30-year fixed-rate mortgages."
For more information, visit www.freddiemac.com.