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Mortgage Rates Report: June 25, 2008

No recommendation until tomorrow. All eyes are on the Federal Reserve Open Market Committee today. At 2:15PM (EDT), 11:15 (PDT), they will release their interest rate decision and statement. The fixed income securities market believe there is a 43% chance that the Fed will RAISE rates to stifle inflation in August and that there is a 61% chance that the hike will come in November.

The eyes will be on the Fed’s commentary, though:

”We expect the Fed to keep the funds rate at 2% today but to shift to a more hawkish statement by placing more emphasis on inflation over growth risks,” strategists at Credit Suisse wrote in a research report. “The Fed will likely use this meeting as an opportunity to set the stage for a potential rate rise in August.”

If the Fed signals that rates could rise as early as August, expect mortgage rates to jump .25% higher, from today’s 6.375% 30 year fixed rate, over the next few weeks. If the Fed signals rate hikes are “possible” as a way to fight inflation, expect rates to stay level through in July (6.25% to 6.5%).

Finally, if the Fed shifts back to its anti-recessionary talk, we could see rates drop down to 6%.

As you can see, there are a lot of “ifs”. This is why today’s Fed commentary is all important. The Fed’s ambiguity has traders convinced that higher rates are a foregone conclusion.

Here’s the silver lining hidden in this dark cloud; mortgage rates are equal to what they were in July, 2007. The Fed Funds rate was at 5.25%, then.

Today, the Fed funds rate is at 2.25%. What that means is that mortgage rates SHOULD be able to withstand some 5-6 rate hikes and stay under 7%.

Alas, markets are discounting mechanisms. We still think there is a lot of risk to higher mortgage rates until the commodities bubble bursts.

Brian Brady is the Managing Director of the Mortgage Leaders Division of World Wide Credit Corporation, America’s #1 Mortgage Broker lending in 43 states.



arrow3 Responses

  1. 124 mos, 2 wks ago

    Brian – what did you think of the cut in the Fed Rate? Was this a new signal? I noticed some improvement in mortgage rates Friday.

  2. 124 mos, 1 wk ago

    I hope the FED would not raise rates. Interest rates have been rising while they have stayed steady. If the FED raised rates I would be scared to see what would happen in the current market if mortgage rates went up to 7.

  3. 104 mos, 2 wks ago

    Mortgage rates are still at an all time low.

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