Rates on fixed mortgages dipped for the second straight week as Treasury yields fell, as reported by MSNBC.com and the Associated Press.
Freddie Mac said Thursday that the average rate on a 30-year mortgage dropped to 4.71% from 4.77% during the previous week. Rates were at a 40-year low of 4.17% in November 2010.The average rate on a 15-year loan slipped to 4.08% from 4.13%. The 15-year rate reached 3.57%, its lowest level on record since 1991.
Treasury yields dropped after the December employment report cane in weaker than expected. This news drove investors to buy safer Treasury binds, driving up prices and lowering yields. Mortgage rates tend to track the yield on the 10-year Treasury note.
Rates are not expected to revisit last year’s historic lows, unless the economy takes a sharp turn for the worst. Even if they do, low mortgage rates did little last year to spark flagging home sales, although the housing market did see the initial signs of improvement.