Mortgage Rates Hit New 2016 High in Anticipation of Fed Action
Mortgage rates moved higher for the sixth consecutive week, according to Freddie Mac, even though yields on the 10-year Treasury are down from their post-election peak. However, the markets are expecting the Federal Open Markets Committee to hike short-term interest rates 25 basis points at its December meeting.
The 10-year Treasury yield dipped following the release of employment data on Dec. 2. But the 30-year conforming mortgage rate increased by five basis points, "starting the month 18 basis points higher than this time last year," said Sean Becketti, chief economist at Freddie Mac
The 30-year fixed-rate mortgage averaged 4.13% for the week ending Dec. 8, up from last week when it averaged 4.08%. A year ago at this time, the 30-year fixed-rate mortgage averaged 3.95%.
The 15-year fixed-rate mortgage averaged 3.36%, up from last week when it averaged 3.34%. A year ago at this time, the 15-year averaged 3.19%.
The five-year Treasury-indexed hybrid adjustable-rate mortgage averaged 3.17%, up from last week when it averaged 3.15%, while a year ago it averaged 3.03%.
"As rates continue to climb and the year comes to a close, next week's FOMC meeting will be the talk of the town with the markets 94% certain of a quarter-point-rate hike," Becketti added.