Freddie Mac: Interest Rates Keep Climbing

Mortgage rates continued their upward trajectory, hitting 3.09% over the past week, Freddie Mac reported Thursday.

Freddie’s Primary Mortgage Market Survey (PMMS) found that the 30-year fixed-rate mortgage (FRM) averaged 3.09%, up from last week’s 3.05%. A year ago at this time, the 30-year FRM averaged 2.80%

“Mortgage rates continued to rise this week due to the trajectory of both the economy and the pandemic,” said Sam Khater, Freddie Mac’s Chief Economist.

“Even as the availability of existing homes is improving, prices remain high due to homebuyer demand and limitations on housing starts and permits resulting from the ongoing labor and material shortages. Despite these countervailing forces, we expect the housing market to remain strong as we head into the end of the year.”

The National Association of Homebuilders (NAHB) has called on the Biden administration to address lumber price volatility, which has seen cash prices climb by more than 25%, and the shortage of skilled laborers.

In a letter to the administration, NAHB stated that these issues “continue to trouble our members, each extremely problematic but when combined, will severely hamper the ability to provide affordable housing and provide jobs to strengthen the economy.”

Inflation is a growing concern across the economy. The Labor Department’s Consumer Price Index jumped 5.4% in September from a year earlier, a 13-year high.

Additional findings from Thursday’s report:

  • 15-year fixed-rate mortgage averaged 2.33% up from last week when it averaged 2.30%.
  • A year ago at this time, the 15-year FRM averaged 2.33%.
  • 5-year Treasury-indexed hybrid adjustable-rate mortgage (ARM) averaged 2.54%, down slightly from last week when it averaged 2.55%.
  • A year ago at this time, the 5-year ARM averaged 2.87%.