Mortgage rates eased in the week ending May 6 as Treasury yields declined on the flight to quality. 

According to Freddie Mac, 30-year fixed mortgage rates averaged 5.0%, down from 5.06% last week. 

Mortgage rates are at their lowest level since the week ending March 25, and are down 21 basis points since the first week of April.

The 15-year fixed rate and 5/1 hybrid ARM rates both slipped three basis points to 4.36% and 3.97%, respectively. One-year ARM rates tumbled 18 basis points to 4.07%.

According to the Mortgage Bankers Association, refinancing activity is not expected to experience a significant response to the improved rate levels. 

Purchase activity is also anticipated to have slipped this week with the expiration of the homebuyers tax credit on April 30.

In comments earlier this week following release of the Pending Home Sales Index, National Association of Realtors Chief Economist Lawrence Yun said he expected sales would be lower following the expiration of the tax credit.

However, he expects that in 2H10 and into 2011, "home sales will likely become self-sustaining if the economy can add jobs at a respectable pace." 

    For the week ending April 30, the MBA reported the Refi Index fell 2.1% to ~2118, while the Purchase Index jumped 13% to ~292.

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