Freddie Mac reported a decline in fixed mortgage rates for the week ending March 4 with 30-year mortgage rates falling back through 5% to 4.97% from 5.05% last week.
Borrowers generally have been more responsive to application activity when rates have fallen through 5%.
For example, yesterday the Mortgage Bankers Association (MBA) reported a 17% and 9% increase in the Refinance Index and Purchase Index, respectively, in the week ending Feb. 26. These numbers resulted from rates rallying late in the week to below 5%.
Overall, however, activity is unimpressive for the level of mortgage rates given the decline in home values, the tight credit conditions, and the weak job market.
Also reported, 15-year fixed mortgage rates were down seven basis points to 4.33% and 5/1 hybrid ARMs averaged 4.11% compared to 4.16% previously. Meanwhile, one-year ARM rates increased 12 basis points to 4.27%.