Mortgage rates jumped a whopping 22 basis points this week, as investors reversed course and are now pricing in the likelihood of another hike by the Federal Open Market Committee.
The Freddie Mac Primary Mortgage Market Survey for June 1 put the 30-year fixed-rate loan at 6.79%, compared with 6.57% one week prior and 5.09% for the same time period in 2022.
Over the past two weeks, the 30-year FRM moved up by 40 basis points, although it remains below its November peak.
Similarly, the 15-year FRM increased 21 basis points to 6.18% from 5.97% last week and 4.32% for the same time in 2022.
The apparent resolution to the debt ceiling situation had no impact, at least on the Freddie Mac data, even as the 10-year Treasury yield fell approximately 20 basis points from its May 26 close in the days after the deal was announced.
The 10-year Treasury is just one benchmark, though, with secondary market activity for securitizations also impacting loan pricing.
Until the last few days, expectations were that the Fed would pause after agreeing to a 25 basis point hike in short-term interest rates at its last meeting.
“Mortgage rates jumped this week, as a buoyant economy has prompted the market to price-in the likelihood of another Federal Reserve rate hike,” said Sam Khater, Freddie Mac chief economist, in a press release. “Although there has been a steady flow of purchase demand around rates in the low to mid 6% range, that demand is likely to weaken as rates approach 7%.”
While the Freddie Mac data, pulled from applications submitted to its Loan Product Advisor underwriting tool, mirrors yesterday’s report from the Mortgage Bankers Association, other rate trackers were down on a week-over-week basis, even though they showed volatility during the time frame.
Black Knight Optimal Blue’s product and pricing engine put the 30-year conforming loan rate at 6.719% as of May 31, down from 6.736% seven days earlier.
Zillow’s rate tracker, which was at 6.68% last Thursday morning and averaged 6.73% for the week, was at 6.61% on May 31; it was up 1 basis point the following morning.
“While the decline in mortgage rates is good news for potential home buyers frustrated with affordability challenges, mortgage rates remain elevated and volatile,” Orphe Divounguy, senior macroeconomist at Zillow Home Loans, said in a statement issued Wednesday night. “The primary reason for this is that recent economic data continue to point to persistent inflation pressures, which could prompt the Fed to further tighten monetary policy.”
Friday’s Bureau of Labor Statistics’ employment report is the next milepost that will likely drive the direction of mortgage rates.