Mortgage Rate Trend Index
Will rates rise or remain relatively unchanged? Experts and Bankrate analysts provide their insights.
This week (Jan. 7 - Jan. 13) the experts say: It's anyone's guess. This week, 36 percent of the panelists believe mortgage rates will rise over the next 35 to 45 days. Another 36 percent think rates will fall, and the rest believe rates will remain relatively unchanged (plus or minus 2 basis points).
Industry experts and Bankrate commentary
Be patient. The market is in Correction Mode after December's awful results.
Dan Green, TheMortgageReports.com, Waterstone Mortgage, Cincinnati
Resale and new home sales have slowed drastically. Unemployment and tight credit requirements are like a wet blanket trying to fire up the housing market again. Fannie and Freddie will replace the Fed as the mortgage rate subsidizers of 2010.
Jeff Lazerson, president, Mortgage Grader, Laguna Niguel, Calif.
With the roller coaster ride of the buying and selling of mortgage-backed securities, the Fed's minimizing of its purchases, yet plenty of pessimistic views of unemployment, foreclosures, etc., rates will remain relatively the same.
Steve Levitt, vice president of mortgage lending, Guaranteed Rate, Chicago
We caught a bit of a break from the run-up in rates in December as rates improved about 0.25 percent from Dec. 28 to Jan. 5, although they lost a little ground on Wednesday. The Fed is scheduled to end its mortgage-backed securities program March 31.
Without an extension to this program, rates will begin their rise to what normal market conditions dictate, which would mean higher rates. Rates in the three years prior to the Fed's involvement were in the 6 (percent) to 7 percent range with no points. Will we be there March 1? No. Would we be on our way? Yes. If we get word in the meantime, the Fed will remain engaged, all bets are off.
Jim Sahnger, mortgage consultant, Palm Beach Financial Network, Stuart, Fla.
It seems as if everyone is predicting higher interest rates for 2010. The improving economy and large issuance of Treasury bonds to finance the U.S. budget deficit are given as reasons for the prediction of higher rates. While I agree the coming supply of Treasuries will put upward pressure on interest rates, I'm not convinced that the improvement in the economy is sustainable. Once government stimulus wanes, I see the economy slipping back into recession. This will keep rates from rising. For now rates hold steady.
Michael Becker, mortgage consultant, Green Pastures Mortgage & Finance, Lutherville, Md.
Reports are starting to surface that the Fed is considering extending or expanding their mortgage-backed securities purchases in an effort to keep rates low. Rumors alone will be sufficient to bring rates lower.
Greg McBride, senior financial analyst, Bankrate.com
As the Federal Reserve puts the brakes on its mortgage-buying activity this quarter, I expect rates to rise.
Holden Lewis, senior reporter, Bankrate.com
About the Bankrate.com Rate Trend Index
Bankrate.com surveys experts in the banking and mortgage fields to see if they believe certificate of deposit and mortgage rates will rise, fall or remain relatively unchanged. For the deposit index, the panel comprises banks, thrifts and credit unions that directly offer FDIC-insured certificates of deposit to the end consumer. For the mortgage index, the panel comprises mortgage bankers, mortgage brokers and other industry experts who provide residential first mortgages to consumers. Results from Bankrate.com's CD Rate Trend Index will be released monthly. Results from Bankrate.com's Mortgage Rate Trend Index will be released each Thursday.