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Mortgage Rates Radar 07/19/2016: Mortgage rates firm slightly

Rates on the most popular types of mortgages rose for the first time in several weeks, according to HSH.com's Weekly Mortgage Rates Radar. The average rate for conforming 30-year fixed-rate mortgages rose by two basis points (0.02 percent) to 3.50 percent. Conforming 5/1 Hybrid ARM rates increased by four basis points, closing the Wednesday-to-Tuesday wraparound weekly survey at an average of 2.90 percent.

Aftermath of the Brexit vote

"With the shock of the Brexit vote nearly a month behind us, financial markets have stabilized quite a bit," said Keith Gumbinger, vice president of HSH.com. "Emboldened, investors have shown a greater preference as of late for riskier assets such as stocks, and the slosh of money out of the safe haven of bonds has lifted yields a little bit, pushing mortgage rates just a whisper higher."

Incoming data showing the U.S. economy gathering some strength leading up to the vote has comforted investors. So far, there appears to be scant evidence that any new economic slowdown is looming, and it may be that any effects of the decision of Britain to leave the European Union are limited. However, we could see periods of market volatility as the process of divorce continues.

Rates may drift higher

"Absent difficult political or economic news, it's not easy for mortgage rates to continue to decline," adds Gumbinger. "That being said, there is little to suggest that they will increase materially anytime soon. If the U.S. economy isn't faltering, and perhaps even gaining strength, mortgage rates may drift a little higher in the coming days and weeks, but probably not by much."

Current mortgage rates

Average mortgage rates and points for conforming residential mortgages for the week ending July 19, according to HSH.com:

Conforming 30-year fixed-rate mortgage

  • Average rate: 3.50 percent
  • Average points: 0.24

Conforming 5/1-year adjustable-rate mortgage

  • Average rate: 2.90 percent
  • Average points: 0.16

Average mortgage rates and points for conforming residential mortgages for the previous week ending July 12 were, according to HSH.com:

Conforming 30-year fixed-rate mortgage

  • Average Rate: 3.48 percent
  • Average Points: 0.18

Conforming 5/1-year adjustable-rate mortgage

  • Average Rate: 2.86 percent
  • Average Points: 0.14

Methodology

The Weekly Mortgage Rates Radar reports the average rates and points offered on conforming 30-year fixed-rate mortgages and conforming 5/1 ARMs. The weekly mortgage rate survey covers a large sample of mortgage lenders and is conducted over a Wednesday-to-Tuesday cycle, with data released every Wednesday. HSH.com’s survey helps consumers find the best rates on home loans in changing market conditions. Unlike mortgage rate surveys that report average rates only, the Weekly Mortgage Rates Radar’s inclusion of both average rates and average points provides a more accurate view of mortgage terms currently offered by lenders.

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