Fixed mortgage rates changed very little this week compared to last week, with little activity occurring in financial markets. According to Freddie Mac's Primary Mortgage Market Survey (PMMS), the 30-year fixed rate mortgage remained below four percent for the fifth consecutive week.
Freddie Mac reported that the 30-year fixed-rate mortgage (FRM) averaged 3.93 percent with an average 0.6 point for the week ending August 20, 2015, down from last week when it averaged 3.94 percent. A year ago at this time, the 30-year FRM averaged 4.10 percent.
"There was little movement in financial markets this week as the 30-year fixed mortgage rate remained steady, dropping only 1 basis point to 3.93 percent," said Sean Becketti, chief economist, Freddie Mac. "Overall inflation grew an underwhelming 0.2 percent year-over-year in July, but core inflation remains steady at 1.8 percent keeping chances alive for a potential rate hike in September.
The survey also showed that the 15-year FRM this week averaged 3.15 percent with an average 0.6 point, down from last week when it averaged 3.17 percent. A year ago at this time, the 15-year FRM averaged 3.23 percent.
Additionally, the 5-year Treasury-indexed hybrid adjustable-rate mortgage (ARM) averaged 2.94 percent this week with an average 0.5 point, up from last week when it averaged 2.93 percent. A year ago, the 5-year ARM averaged 2.95 percent. The 1-year Treasury-indexed ARM averaged 2.62 percent this week with an average 0.3 point, unchanged from last week. At this time last year, the 1-year ARM averaged 2.38 percent.
"Housing markets have responded positively to low mortgage rates -- the 30-year fixed mortgage rate has been below four percent for five consecutive weeks," Becketti said. "The latest NAHB/Wells Fargo Housing Market Index for August 2015 was 61, the highest level in more than nine years. One-unit housing starts in July 2015 jumped to 782,000 units, up 12.8 percent from June and up 19 percent from last year. Overall housing markets remain on track for the best year since 2007."