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Mortgage rates continue their downward trickle

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Home price data increased but not as much as projected. That is one factor attributed to mortgage rates continuing their downward trickle.

In the latest weekly survey, the benchmark 30 year rate has dipped to 4.120%, down 2 basis points from the previous survey. The popular 15 year rate also inched down and is now reported at 3.210%.

Mortgage rates are cyclical and move based on several key financial indicators. While the 10 year Treasury bond is the primary index to gauge direction; home sales, consumer confidence, unemployment numbers are also part of the mix.

"Fixed mortgage rates eased a bit for the fifth consecutive week as reports that existing home sales are up 1.3 percent but not as much as expected. However, new home sales rose 6.4 percent in April.” Frank Nothaft, vice president and chief economist, Freddie Mac

Lenders offering rates to consumers find themselves in a very competitive environment, especially as home buyers or those refinancing their existing mortgage seek out bargains. The rate survey has been an industry tool to gauge where rates stand week-to-week. Freddie Mac provides mortgage funds to lenders who originate loans. Each week they obtain data which is comprised as part of the survey.

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