In Freddie Mac's results of its Primary Mortgage Market Survey®, mortgage rates continued to follow bond yields higher amid improving economic data. The average 30-fixed rate mortgage averaged 4.08 percent for the week clearing the 4 percent barrier for the first time since October 27, 2011, when it averaged 4.10 percent.
According to Frank Nothaft, vice president and chief economist, Freddie Mac:
"Mortgage rates are catching up with increases in U.S. Treasury bond yields placing the average 30-year fixed mortgage rate above 4 percent for the first time since the end of October 2011. Bond yields rose over the past two weeks in part due to an improving assessment of the state of the economy by the Federal Reserve, better than expected results of commercial bank stress tests and the likelihood of a second bailout for Greece. Meanwhile,
consumers continued to reduce their debt burdens in the fourth quarter of 2011. For instance, homeowners reduced their financial obligations ratio (debt payments as a share of disposable income) to the lowest point since the second quarter of 1994."
Realtytimes.com March 23, 2012