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Mortgage Rates: Report and Outlook, June 17, 2024

Mortgage rates for the week of June 17 2024

Today’s market


Last week’s consumer price index showed inflation slowing. And that was great for mortgage rates. With few consequential economic reports on this week’s calendar, we can hope that momentum will keep those rates at roughly current levels.

What’s Driving Mortgage Rates?

This morning’s lead story in The Wall Street Journal (paywall) had the headline, “A Big Bond Rally Is Promising Some Help for Home Buyers.”

The article began, “Signs of cooling inflation have driven a furious bond rally this month, … promising to inject some life into the listless housing market.” The hope is that mortgage rates will continue to fall.

They may. But there’s a risk here. The Federal Reserve last week projected only one cut to its benchmark interest rate this year, down from the three projected in March. And such cuts are arguably the most likely route to sustained falls in mortgage rates.

Markets have so far all but shrugged off the Fed’s projections. And the Journal says that investors are already placing a 70% chance on two cuts in 2024, based on CME Group data. However, Wall Street has a pretty poor record for successfully second-guessing the central bank.

So, we have grounds for optimism over future mortgage rates. But that’s tempered by the possibility of the Fed not bending to markets’ will.

What To Watch Out For This Week

Seven senior Fed officials have speaking engagements across today and tomorrow. And some of them may try to get markets to take their rate-cutting projection more seriously.

If they succeed, mortgage rates might rise. But markets are good at choosing to hear only what they want to hear.

Bond markets are closed on Wednesday for the Juneteenth holiday. So, mortgage rates, which are largely determined by yields on a type of bond, are unlikely to move that day.

None of the economic reports on this week’s calendar typically has the potential of last week’s CPI or Fed events to move mortgage rates far.

But four might have some effect. Usually, they push those rates only modestly higher or lower. And their impact tends not to last. However, shockingly good or bad data could drive more volatility.

Those four are:

  1. May retail sales (Tuesday) — Markets expect these to warm up, increasing to 0.2% from April’s 0.0%

  2. May industrial production (Tuesday) — Markets expect this, too, to warm up, increasing to 0.4% from April’s 0.0%

  3. June flash* purchasing managers’ index (PMI) for the services sector from S&P (Friday) — Markets expect this to decline, falling to 53.9 from May’s 54.8

  4. June flash* PMI for the manufacturing sector from S&P (Friday) — Markets expect this to nudge down to 51.0 from May’s 51.3

* A flash is a preliminary reading that may be changed later

Our best chance to see falling mortgage rates is if reported figures are lower than markets expect. Higher-than-forecasted actuals might push them upward.

Further Ahead

Next Friday, we’re due the personal consumption expenditures (PCE) price index. That’s an important inflation report, though markets tend to take less notice of it than the CPI.

However, the Fed says it’s its favored gauge of inflation. So, it can be consequential for mortgage rates.

Most other reports next week rarely move mortgage rates far. But it’s worth mentioning the final reading of gross domestic product (GDP) growth in the first quarter of this year. That’s scheduled for next Thursday. But it would have to spring a surprise to have much effect.


Few expert economists think average rates for 30-year, fixed-rate mortgages will dip below 6% this year. And some, including Fannie Mae, expect them to be at or over 7% (still) at the end of 2024.

Others are optimistic. The Mortgage Bankers Association forecasts 6.5% for the last quarter.

While no one expects rates in the 4s or 5s, there’s at least a chance of a gentle downward drift for rates.

About The Author:

Peter Warden has been covering mortgage, real estate, and personal finance for 15 years. He has appeared on The Mortgage Reports, Credit Sesame,, and other publications.

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