Mortgage Rate Trend Index: July 28, 2011


Will rates go up, down or remain unchanged?

Polyana da CostaPolyana da Costa
Mortgage reporter,
Investors are nervous, and everyone is waiting to see if the United States will default. Rates will keep rising until Congress deals with the debt ceiling situation.
Holden LewisHolden Lewis
Assistant managing editor,
Circle the answer that best reflects your thoughts:
a) Mortgage rates will rise when the federal government goes into default.
b) Mortgage rates will rise as the threat of a debt downgrade draws near.
c) Lenders will raise rates to control the flood of applicants who want to grab low rates before they rise.
d) All of the above.
Greg McBrideGreg McBride, CFA
Senior financial analyst,
Either a debt default or a downgrade would push rates higher, and at least one of those is looking more likely.
Michael BeckerMichael Becker
Mortgage banker, WCS Funding Group, Lutherville, Md.
It's really unbelievable that both parties in Congress have been unable to come together, compromise and pass an increase in the U.S. debt ceiling that is paired with credible deficit reductions. As each day passes with no resolution, the likelihood of downgrade of U.S. debt is becoming more and more likely. This could have huge negative impact on interest rates and the economy in general. In fact, I am a bit surprised that rates haven't increased yet. In this climate of uncertainty I would recommend everyone lock their rate in, as there seems to be a much greater chance that rates rise than they fall. Mortgage rates up in the coming week.
Kevin BreelandKevin Breeland
General manager, Residential Mortgage of South Carolina, Mount Pleasant, S.C.
Uncertainties surrounding the debt ceiling increase, fight on Capitol Hill, unrest as the world watches this unfold, still concerns (though not as bad) about Greece, some members of the Fed believing interest rates should be increased now ... all of these items will contribute to rates rising.
Derek EgebergDerek Egeberg
Certified Mortgage Planning Specialist and branch manager, Academy Mortgage, Yuma, Ariz.
With the continued uncertainty surrounding the debt ceiling and the United States debt rating, bonds look to continue lower, pushing consumer rates higher.
Barry HabibBarry Habib
CEO, Mortgage Market Guide, Holmdel, N.J.
Higher rates off a debt outcome. Bonds are in a no-win situation. A debt deal sends stocks higher at expense of bonds. No deal (unlikely) pressures bond prices lower and rates higher.
Dick LepreDick Lepre
Senior loan officer, RPM Mortgage, San Francisco
The folks in D.C. are making forecasting anything a bit difficult this week. The technicals are calling for higher yields.
Bob MoultonBob Moulton
President, Americana Mortgage Group, Manhasset, N.Y.
Rates may rise if the debt ceiling talks are not finalized.
Joe NunziataJoe Nunziata
Chairman and co-CEO, FBC Mortgage, Orlando, Fla.
We believe that mortgage rates may increase slightly during the next week due to the unknown decision by the U.S. Congress regarding the debt limit. If the U.S. defaults (even temporarily), investors could sell the dollar and the Treasuries, which could spill over into mortgage bonds.
John WalshJohn Walsh
President, Total Mortgage Services, Milford, Conn.
To say that there is uncertainty in the economy is the understatement of the year, but I have to urge extreme caution on the part of consumers over the next week as the debt ceiling and spending-cut food fight continues in Washington. Many of the possible outcomes could push rates higher, though I am intrigued by the theory gaining traction that says a credit ratings downgrade for U.S. Treasuries could lead to buying in mortgage-backed securities as a replacement -- thus lowering rates.

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