Mortgage Rates Hover At Their Lowest Levels Of The Year

Mortgage rates hovered at their lowest levels of the year
for the third straight week this week
, according to a survey published
Thursday by Freddie

The average
30-year fixed-rate mortgage stood at 4.1% for the week ending Wednesday,
according to Freddie’s survey. To get that rate, borrowers had to pay fees
equal to around 0.5% of the loan amount.

Mortgage rates
have drifted down in recent weeks as bond yields on 10-year Treasury notes have
fallen. Investors have bought government debt amid rising concerns over
geopolitical instability.
Few expected
rates would be this low at the beginning of the year. Indeed, one of the
biggest surprises of 2013 came in the spring, when mortgage rates jumped
suddenly as anxious investors sold off Treasury securities amid signs that the Federal
was thinking about slowing down its bond-buying program.

By contrast, one
of the bigger surprises of 2014 may be that mortgage rates might end the year
lower than they began, at around 4.5%, even as the Federal Reserve has
gradually pared back its purchases of mortgage-backed securities.