Volatile Movement in the Holiday Season
Mortgage rates were already near 2015 highs going into the Christmas holiday. On the 23rd, activity in mortgage-backed-securities only made this problem worse. Though the movement in MBS was a relatively small one, and one that would usually translate to a very slight change in mortgage rates, rates moved up to their highest level in the past five months.
This unusual fluctuation can be attributed to the volatile nature of the holiday season. Lenders are considerably more conservative about adjusting their rate sheets when market activity dies down during the holidays. The previous day was a far weaker one for MBS activity, but many mortgage lenders were not adjusting their rate quotes as much as they may otherwise have. Therefore, the 23rd started off on a much weaker foot than rate sheets indicated.
If you are trying to decide whether to float or lock, it would seem that the odds are in your favor. Should MBS prices linger where they are, mortgage rates could experience a significant improvement as we head into 2016.