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Bankrate: Mortgage Rates Drop to New Lows

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RISMEDIA, October 8, 2010—Mortgage rates fell to record lows again this week, with the average conforming 30-year fixed mortgage rate now 4.45 percent, according to Bankrate.com’s weekly national survey. The average 30-year fixed mortgage has an average of 0.32 discount and origination points.

To see mortgage rates in your area, go to http://www.bankrate.com/funnel/mortgages/.

According to Bankrate, the average 15-year fixed mortgage dropped to 3.87 percent, and the larger jumbo 30-year fixed rate fell to 5.14 percent. Adjustable rate mortgages also hit new lows, with the average 5-year ARM decreasing to 3.64 percent and the average 7-year ARM falling to 3.88 percent.

Mortgage rates set yet another record low in anticipation that more efforts from the Federal Reserve – known as quantitative easing – are on the way in an effort to juice the economic recovery. Investors expecting lower interest rates to result have been front-running the Fed by purchasing government- and mortgage-backed bonds, driving yields lower. Mortgage rates are dictated by yields on government- and mortgage-backed debt.

The last time mortgage rates were above 6 percent was Nov. 2008. At that time, the average rate was 6.33 percent, meaning a $200,000 loan would have carried a monthly payment of $1,241.86. With the average rate now at 4.45 percent, the monthly payment for the same size loan would be $1,007.44, a savings of $234 per month for a homeowner refinancing now.

SURVEY RESULTS

30-year fixed: 4.45% — down from 4.5% last week (avg. points: 0.32)

15-year fixed: 3.87% — down from 3.94% last week (avg. points: 0.30)

5/1 ARM: 3.64% — down from 3.68% last week (avg. points: 0.36)

Bankrate’s national weekly mortgage survey is conducted each Wednesday from data provided by the top 10 banks and thrifts in the top 10 markets.

For a full analysis of this week’s move in mortgage rates, go to http://www.bankrate.com.

The survey is complemented by Bankrate’s weekly Rate Trend Index, in which a panel of mortgage experts predicts which way the rates are headed over the next seven days. There is no clear consensus this week, with 38 percent of panelists predicting mortgage rates will continue to rise. The remaining respondents are evenly divided, with 31 percent forecasting a decline and an equal 31 percent expecting mortgage rates to stay more or less unchanged over the next week.

For the full mortgage Rate Trend Index, go to http://www.bankrate.com/RTI.

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