WASHINGTON — U.S. mortgage rates were mixed this week.
The average rate on the benchmark 30-year, fixed rate home loan was unchanged from last week at 3.1%; a year ago, it stood at 2.72%. Fifteen-year, fixed rate mortgage rates blipped up to 2.42% from 2.39% last week; it was 2.28% a year ago.
The U.S. housing market has been hot, helped by low interest rates, a limited supply of available homes and pent-up demand from consumers who spent much of the past year and a half cooped up at home.
Many economists expect U.S. interest rates to rise in coming months as the Federal Reserve moves away from the easy money policies it adopted last year when the coronavirus slammed the U.S. economy last spring. "Looking ahead, homebuyers can expect a continued gradual rise in mortgage rates punctuated by occasional dips,″ said Danielle Hale, chief economist at Realtor.com.
A strong rebound from the pandemic recession has fueled a runup in consumer prices, which climbed 6.2% last month from a year earlier — biggest gain since 1990.
Rates on five-year adjustable rate loans fell to 2.47% from 2.49% last week. They were at 3.16% a year ago.