Rate Lock Advisory

Tuesday, March 19th

Tuesday’s bond market has opened in negative territory due to early stock gains. The major stock indexes are showing strength, pushing the Dow higher by 111 points and the Nasdaq up 28 points. The bond market is currently down 6/32 (2.62%), but this likely isn’t enough of a move to cause much of a change in this morning’s mortgage pricing.



30 yr - 2.62%







Mortgage Rate Trend

Trailing 90 Days - National Average

  • 30 Year Fixed
  • 15 Year Fixed
  • 5/1 ARM

Indexes Affecting Rate Lock



Factory Orders

January's Factory Orders report was posted by the Commerce Department late this morning, revealing a 0.1% rise in new orders at U.S. factories. This was a little softer than the 0.2% that was expected, making the data favorable news for bonds. However, this is only a moderately important release because a good portion of the data was already included in last week’s Durable Goods Orders report. Therefore, the minor variance in a moderately relevant piece of data was not enough to affect mortgage rates.



Federal Open Market Committee (FOMC) Statement

There are no relevant economic releases scheduled for tomorrow. Instead, we will be looking at an afternoon of Federal Reserve events for mortgage rates direction. They start with the 2:00 PM ET adjournment of the two-day FOMC meeting that began today. There is a pretty wide consensus that Fed Chairman Jerome Powell and friends will leave key short-term rates unchanged at this meeting. Since the non-move won't come as a surprise, market participants will be focused on the Fed's timetable for future rate hikes and balance sheet plans. If the post-meeting statement gives any hints of a rate hike coming soon, expect the bond market to react negatively and mortgage rates to spike higher. Reassurances from them that current economic conditions call for a patient approach and no timetable is set for the next rate hike, we should see bonds and mortgage rates improve.



Fed Talk

The FOMC meeting will adjourn at 2:00 PM ET, which is when the statement will be released. That is also when we will get the Fed's updated economic projections. Those events will be followed by a press conference with Chairman Powell at 2:30 PM. It is likely going to be a pretty active afternoon in the financial and mortgage markets, especially if the meeting yields any surprises regarding rate hikes and/or balance sheet reduction plans.

Float / Lock Recommendation

If I were considering financing/refinancing a home, I would.... Lock if my closing was taking place within 7 days... Float if my closing was taking place between 8 and 20 days... Float if my closing was taking place between 21 and 60 days... Float if my closing was taking place over 60 days from now... This is only my opinion of what I would do if I were financing a home. It is only an opinion and cannot be guaranteed to be in the best interest of all/any other borrowers.