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FHFA Reports Mortgage Interest Rates, April 2009

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
5/28/2009

Washington, D.C. – The Federal Housing Finance Agency today reported that the average interest rate on conventional 30-year, fixed-rate, mortgage loans of $417,000 or less decreased 18 basis points to 4.87 percent in April. The average interest rate on 15-year, fixed-rate loans of $417,000 or less decreased 3 basis points to 4.75 percent in April. These rates are calculated from the FHFA’s Monthly Interest Rate Survey (MIRS) of purchase-money mortgages. These results reflect loans closed during the April 24–30 period. Typically, the interest rate is determined 30 to 45 days before the loan is closed. Thus, the reported rates depict market conditions prevailing in mid- to late-March.

The contract rate on the composite of all mortgage loans (fixed- and adjustable-rate) was 4.88 percent in April down 17 basis points from 5.05 percent in March. The effective interest rate, which reflects the amortization of initial fees and charges, was 4.96 percent in April down 18 basis points from 5.14 percent in March.

This report contains no data on adjustable-rate mortgages due to insufficient sample size.

Initial fees and charges were 0.57 percent of the loan balance in April, down 0.03 percent from 0.60 in March. Forty-five percent of the purchase-money mortgage loans originated in April were "no-point" mortgages, up from forty-three percent in March. The average term was 28.3 years in April, up from 28.1 years in March. The average loan-to-price ratio in April was 75.1 percent, up from 74.7 percent in March. The average loan amount increased by $7,100 to $217,000 in April.

The National Average Contract Mortgage Rate for the Purchase of Previously Occupied Homes by Combined Lenders, used as an index in some ARM contracts, was 4.88 percent based on loans closed in April. This is a decrease of 0.18 percent from the previous month. This Contract rate series can be found at www.fhfa.gov/DataTools/Downloads/Pages/Monthly-Interest-Rate-Data.aspx.

National Average Contract Mortgage Rate Graph: April 2008 - April 2009 

Source: FHFA

The MIRS was previously released by the Federal Housing Finance Board (FHFB). Recorded information on this index is available by calling (202) 408-2940. For technical questions on this index, please call David Roderer at (202) 408-2540. The May index value will be announced on June 25, 2009.

Technical note: The data is based on a monthly survey of major lenders that are asked to report the terms and conditions on all conventional, single-family, fully amortized, purchase-money loans closed the last five working days of the month. The data thus excludes FHA-insured and VA-guaranteed mortgages, refinancing loans, and balloon loans. This month’s data is based on 7,644 reported loans from 49 lenders, representing savings associations, mortgage companies, commercial banks, and mutual savings banks. The effective interest rate includes the amortization of initial fees and charges over a 10-year period, which is the historical assumption of the average life of a mortgage loan. The data is weighted to reflect the shares of mortgage lending by lender size and lender type as reported in the latest release of the Federal Reserve Board’s Home Mortgage Disclosure Act data.

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The Federal Housing Finance Agency regulates Fannie Mae, Freddie Mac and the 12 Federal Home Loan Banks. These government-sponsored enterprises provide more than $6.3 trillion in funding for the U.S. mortgage markets and financial institutions.

Contacts:
Corinne Russell (202) 649-3032 / Stefanie Johnson (202) 649-3030
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