30-year fixed-rate mortgage (FRM) averaged 3.79 percent with an average 0.7 point for the week ending May 17, 2012, down from last week when it averaged 3.83 percent. Last year at this time, the 30-year FRM averaged 4.61 percent.
15-year FRM this week averaged 3.04 percent with an average 0.7 point, down from last week when it averaged 3.05 percent. A year ago at this time, the 15-year FRM averaged 3.80 percent.
5-year Treasury-indexed hybrid adjustable-rate mortgage (ARM) averaged 2.83 percent this week, with an average 0.6 point, up from last week when it averaged 2.81 percent. A year ago, the 5-year ARM averaged 3.48 percent.
1-year Treasury-indexed ARM averaged 2.78 percent this week with an average 0.5 point, up from last week when it averaged 2.73 percent. At this time last year, the 1-year ARM averaged 3.15 percent.
According to Frank Nothaft, vice president and chief economist, Freddie Mac:
"The European debt crisis overshadowed improving economic indicators for the U.S. and allowed Treasury bond yields and fixed mortgage rates to ease for another week. For instance, industrial production rose 1.1 percent in April -- the largest gain since December 2010 -- and consumer sentiment in May rose to its highest reading since January 2008, according to the University of Michigan.
There was also good news in the home construction industry. Housing starts rose to an annualized rate of 717,000 homes in April, well above the market consensus forecast, and construction on one-family homes increased to its strongest pace in three months. Moreover, homebuilder confidence in May reached its highest reading since January 2008 according to the NAHB/Wells Fargo Housing Market Index."