Thursday, March 20, 2008
Interest Rates Go Bipolar
Mortgage rates headed in two different directions this week, with fixed-rate instruments plunging and adjustable-rate mortgages soaring.
Bankrate.com reports that the average 30-year fixed rate fell 41 basis points from the previous week, to 5.98 percent.
The average 15-year fixed -- a popular option for refinancing -- fell 39 basis points, to 5.46 percent.
Meanwhile, adjustable-rate mortgages soared. The benchmark 5/1 ARM was up sharply for the second straight week, rising 23 basis points to 6.44 percent.
Rates have been extremely volatile in recent weeks, sometimes moving a half-percent in a single day. Overall, however, the trend has been higher.