Mortgage Rates Appear to Have Settled (At Least for Now)


As a general rule, there are few things less exciting in this world than the week-to-week change in mortgage rates. Yet, for most of May and June, that's where all the action was.

The good news is that, according to Freddie Mac's most recent estimate, things have begun to settle back down, adding certainty to a critical sector of the economy.


As you can see above, Freddie Mac reported today that the benchmark rate on the 30-year fixed rate mortgage stayed put this week at 4.4%. That was the same rate as last week and is 1.1 percentage points higher than the all-time low set on November 21, 2012.

While many prospective and current homeowners undoubtedly regret missing the opportunity to either buy a home or refinance their existing mortgage when rates were so low, the fact remains that mortgage rates are still dirt cheap, at roughly half the historical average.

On top of this, while it's still too early to draw a firm conclusion, there's reason to believe that higher rates may even provide a boost to the housing market itself.

Shares of the nation's largest homebuilders are rallying today on the news as well as a report that confidence in the industry is at the highest level in nearly eight years. D.R. Horton is up by 3.2%, PulteGroup by 1.7%, and Toll Brothers by 1.4%.

The 1 stock Buffett wishes he could buy, but can't
The price of becoming the world's greatest investor is that Warren Buffett can no longer make many of the types of investments that made him rich in the first place. Find out about one such opportunity in "The Stock Buffett Wishes He Could Buy." The free report details a sector of the economy Buffett's heavily invested in right now and exactly why he can't buy one attractive company in that sector. Click here to keep reading.

The article Mortgage Rates Appear to Have Settled (At Least for Now) originally appeared on

John Maxfield has no position in any stocks mentioned. The Motley Fool has no position in any of the stocks mentioned. Try any of our Foolish newsletter services free for 30 days. We Fools may not all hold the same opinions, but we all believe that considering a diverse range of insights makes us better investors. The Motley Fool has a disclosure policy.

Copyright © 1995 - 2013 The Motley Fool, LLC. All rights reserved. The Motley Fool has a disclosure policy.