An Implacable Problem with a Policy Solution

As the Fed has hiked interest rates, mortgage rates have of course also gone up, sending a sudden chill through the residential market and putting home ownership even more out of reach for all but those for whom the home equity they still have after prices correct suffices for long-term wealth accumulation.  However, mortgage rates have often risen higher than expected from usual yield spreads and thus Fed tightening is even more excruciating not just for the mortgage market, but also for FHFA’s equitable-finance mission and the Fed’s hoped-for soft landing.  In this analysis, we assess the dynamics of recent mortgage pricing and what might be done about it.