Mortgage rates were down notably on Zillow’s Mortgage Marketplace ticker as of yesterday, following dovish comments from Federal Reserve Vice Chairwoman Janet L. Yellen that had hinted at continued bond-buying stimulus from the central bank.
Interest rates on 30-year fixed-rate mortgages, previously at 4.22 percent, fell to 4.06 percent yesterday, following a consistent decline last week; rates had firmed at 4.12 percent over the weekend before dropping to 4.06 percent on Tuesday. 15-year fixed-rate mortgages were at 3.05 percent, while 5/1 adjustable-rate loans were at 2.69 percent.
Zillow’s mortgage rates are tracked real-time and based on thousands of custom mortgage quotes it receives daily from anonymous borrowers, and are reflective of present market trends; the Mortgage Marketplace is not to be confused with a more traditional weekly survey, or with marketing rates.
Discussing the variables that influenced the drop in rates, Zillow chief economist Stanley Humphries cited Yellen’s assurance that the Fed will not be tapering or “removing” its stimulus “too quickly,” thus suggesting the central bank’s bond buying will continue for the immediate foreseeable future. Still, Humphries remained uncertain as to whether tapering would occur before the year is over. “Looking ahead, rates will be influenced by the Federal Reserve’s meeting minutes, scheduled for late Wednesday, as observers try to read the tea leaves to assess the likelihood of a December taper,” he predicted.
Looking at major states in terms of 30-year fixed mortgage rates, California, Florida and Pennsylvania all experienced 16 basis-point drops in mortgage rates, while interest rates fell by just seven basis points (from 4.15 percent to 4.08 percent) in Washington state, and by only 11 basis points (4.16 percent to 4.05 percent) in New Jersey.