Using Freddie Mac’s Primary Mortgage Market Survey, Dan Green has tracked the rates on 30-year, fixed-rate mortgages and the pattern they follow.
Essentially, mortgage rates are highest in the spring, then — roundabout April — begin falling through the summer and fall, then climb again in the winter.
Here’s his chart:
Green speculates that the pattern is less about generalities in the market, but more about a coincidence in financial markets.
2012 marks the third straight year that U.S. mortgage rates peaked in spring, before falling into summer. And, perhaps, this is because, 2012 is following the same financial storyline that played out in years past.
The similarities between 2010, 2011 and 2012 are remarkable :
- January – March : Consumer spending makes gains; Holiday shopping shown strong.
- February – April : U.S. experiences strong job growth, stock market soars
- March – April : Crisis emerges in the Eurozone, job growth slows. Mortgage bonds sell.
It’s the same pattern year-after-year.