In today’s Mortgage Market Update, we’ll take a look at how rates are trending, plus share some interesting information on home builder confidence – which could point to a robust spring and summer market.

First, let’s look at those rates.

According to Sigma Research, mortgage rates are currently trending NEUTRAL. Last week the MBS market improved by +50bps. This was enough to improve mortgage rates or fees. Overall mortgage rates were volatile last week.

Sigma’s forecast for the next seven days predicts rates remaining NEUTRAL. There are three things however, that have the greatest ability to influence mortgage rates this week: 1.) the Fed, 2.) events “across the pond,” and 3.) domestic events.

1.) Following last week’s “dovish” rate hike, the market is looking for more clarity and this week has a glut of Fed Speak which includes Fed Chair Janet Yellen.

  • 3/20 Neel Kashkari (the lone dissenting vote) and Charles Evans
  • 03/21 Esther George, Loretta Mester and Eric Rosengren
  • 03/23 Janet Yellen, Robert Kaplan
  • 03/24 James Bullard and John Williams

2.) What is likely the biggest news is that Great Britain will officially start Article 50 on March 29, which will finally begin the divorce process from the Eurozone and allow Great Britain to nail down some new trade agreements. However, this creates a lot of uncertainty as it has never happened before. Great Britain will no doubt end up fine, but concern surrounding the health and stability of the Eurozone could influence rates here in the U.S.

There is a Eurozone Finance Ministers meeting this week which will be closely watches as well as the French elections taking center stage with the first Presidential debate on Monday.

We also have economic data from China, Germany, Japan and several other of the top ten economic that will be released soon.

3.) Here in the U.S., we have a very light economic calendar this week and there are no Treasury auctions to digest. The only economic report of any significance is Friday’s Durable Goods Orders.

This week’s potential volatility is rated AVERAGE. Mortgage rates will likely stay in a pretty tight range this week. However, Janet Yellen’s comments on Wednesday could influence rates and make them move outside that range.

The Bottom Line: As usual, if you’re trying to compare the risks and benefits of locking your rate in today or floating your loan rate, contact your mortgage professional to discuss it with them.