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Published: Jun 05, 2020 4 min read
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Mortgage rates remain near record lows, giving a boost to home buyers and homeowners looking to refinance as the U.S. economy shows surprising signs of improving.

Positive news came Friday with the Bureau of Labor Statistics' release of May's employment numbers. The unemployment rate surprisingly dropped from 14.7% to 13.3% as 2.5 million jobs were added to the economy. "The economic data in May has thus far come in better than expected," according to a statement from Mike Fratantoni, chief economist of the Mortgage Bankers Association, "This points to an economy that is beginning to rebound from the impacts of the pandemic."

Fratantoni went on to add that the BLS jobs report also shows an increase in construction employment, indicating that home building is recovering as well. "The housing market is helping to lead this rebound," he said.

The volume of home purchase applications jumped 18% year-over-year for the week ended May 29, according to data from the Mortgage Bankers Association.

Refinance loan applications continued a seven-week decline, falling 3% from last week. Still, refinance applications made up 60% of all applications for the week ending May 29. Even with the steady decline, refinancing applications are more than double their year-ago levels.

"While the economy is slowly rebounding, all signs continue to point to a solid recovery in home sales activity heading into the summer as prospective buyers jump back into the market," said Sam Khater, chief economist for Freddie Mac in a statement Thursday. "Low mortgage rates are a key factor in this recovery."

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Average Mortgage Rates

The average interest rate for a 30-year fixed-rate mortgage ticked up to 3.18% with 0.7 points paid for the week ending June 4, according to Freddie Mac. That is just 0.3 percentage points higher than the all-time low of 3.15% set last week.

A year ago the average rate was 3.82%. A homeowner with a $250,000 mortgage balance paying 3.82% on a 30-year loan could cut their monthly payment from $1,168 to $1,078 by financing at today’s lower rates. (It is important to note that refinancing involves closing fees and will reset the clock on your mortgage, meaning you will have to make payments longer.)

According to Freddie Mac the average rate for a 15-year fixed-rate mortgage was 2.62%, unchanged from last week, while the average rate on a 5-year adjustable-rate mortgage dropped 0.3 percentage points to 3.10%.

Today’s Mortgage Rates

Of course mortgage rates vary widely by location and personal factors like the type of home you plan to buy, your down payment and your credit score. Here are today’s advertised mortgage rates at some of mortgage industry’s largest lenders.

Quicken

Quicken, a non-bank lender based in Detroit, is the nation’s leading mortgage lender by dollar origination volume.

Mortgage rates advertised for June 5:

30-year fixed: 3.617%

15-year-fixed: 3.088%

(Quicken doesn’t advertise a five-year adjustable rate. Rates are APRs.)

Wells Fargo

Based in San Francisco, Wells Fargo has more than 7,000 locations.

Mortgage rates advertised for June 5:

30-year fixed: 3.374%

15-year-fixed: 2.810%

5-year ARM: 2.943%

(Rates are APRs.)

JP Morgan Chase

Based in New York, JP Morgan Chase has nearly 5,000 U.S. branches.

Mortgage rates advertised for June 5:

30-year fixed: 3.187%

15-year-fixed: 2.624%

5-year ARM: 2.831%

(Rates based on New York City zip code 10006. Rates are APRs.)

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