Interest Rate Roundup for Dec. 9, 2010

Mortgages* 4.89% (30-year fixed)* 0.36 (average points)

Here's a look at the state of mortgage rates from's weekly national survey of large banks and thrifts conducted Dec. 8, 2010.

Mortgage rates continued to catapult upward in the latest weekly survey, with 30-year fixed home loans climbing a sharp 18 basis points to 4.89%.

The relatively sharp increase comes after several weeks of rising rates and, if the trend continues, would send 30-year fixed rate mortgages over the 5% threshold in the near future.The ascent was even more severe for 15-year fixed-rate mortgages, which climbed 19 basis points, to 4.26% from 4.07% a week ago. A basis point is one-hundredth of 1 percentage point.Other popular home loans had more modest hikes, but rose nonetheless. The 5/1 adjustable-rate mortgage hit 3.85%, a gain of 11 basis points. With a 5/1 ARM, the mortgage has a fixed rate for the first five years, then is adjusted annually for the remainder of the loan's term.

Meanwhile, 30-year jumbo mortgages were at 5.39%, a hike of 10 basis points.

The latest mortgage figures come as a new survey shows that Americans continue to have grave misgivings about the direction of the housing market.

The survey, released jointly by and RealtyTrac, found 58 percent of American adults expect recovery in the housing market won't happen until after 2012. One in five respondents believe it will be 2015 before housing regains its economic health.

"Government incentives have come and gone, and historic lows in interest rates have done little to spur recovery,'' says Pete Flint, CEO of Trulia.

Find out monthly mortgage payments using Bankrate's mortgage calculator.-Gregg Fields

CDs* 0.49% (1-year CD yields)* 1.5% (5-year CD yields)

Here's a look at the state of CD rates from's weekly national survey of large banks and thrifts conducted Dec. 8, 2010.

CD rates broke their nonlosing streak in this week's rate survey. All in the survey slipped a bit.The average one-year CD yield fell 2 basis points to 0.49%. Also down 2 basis points, the average five-year CD yield came in at 1.5%.

Jumbo CDs also lost some ground. The average one-year jumbo CD yield is down 2 basis points to 0.54%. The five-year yield lost 1 basis point to 1.52%.

For the 14th week in a row, the average money market account yield is 0.19%.

If low rates on savings vehicles have you despairing, there are alternatives. For instance, high-yield checking may be the answer to your rate woes. There are some high-yield checking programs with rates as high as 4%. For more alternatives to skimpy savings rates, read "5 ways to beat puny savings account rates."

Check Bankrate's rate tables for high-yield CDs and high-yield money market accounts.

All deposit products listed with Bankrate are FDIC-insured.

-Sheyna Steiner

Auto Loans* 6.19% (60-month, new car)* 7.16% (36-month, used car)

Here's a look at the state of auto loan rates from's weekly national survey of large banks and thrifts conducted Dec. 8, 2010.

Auto loan rates fell further this week into record-low territory. New-car rates were lower across the board, with the average rate for a 60-month, new-car loan falling 3 basis points to 6.19%. The rate for 48-month, new-car loans also slid, dropping 2 basis points to 6.22%.

Used-car loans were also lower in this week's survey. The average rate for a 36-month, used-car loan shed 5 basis points, to 7.16%.

This month the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration, or NHTSA, proposed new requirements for rearward visibility in cars and trucks by 2014, according to a report by The Detroit News. The requirements are intended to prevent motorists from accidently backing over pedestrians, particularly children under 5 years of age, 100 of whom are killed in such accidents every year. To comply with the proposed rules, automakers would most likely have to install rear-facing cameras and screens in new autos, adding between $159 and $203 to the cost of producing a new vehicle.

To find updated auto rates in your area, visit Bankrate's auto rate table.

-Claes Bell

Home Equity* 5.49% (line of credit)* 7.09% (loan)

Here's a look at the state of home equity rates from's weekly national survey of large banks and thrifts conducted Dec. 8, 2010.

Loans based on home equity saw little movement in the latest Bankrate survey.Home equity loans rose 1 basis point, to 7.09%. A basis point is one-hundredth of 1 percentage point.

Meanwhile, loans known as a home equity loan of credit, or HELOC, were unchanged at 5.49%.

To find the best home equity loan rates in your area, check Bankrate's interactive tool.

See all home equity loan rates content.

-Gregg Fields

Credit Cards* 13.04% (all fixed)* 14.45% (all variable)

Here's a look at the state of credit card rates from's weekly national survey of large banks and thrifts conducted Dec. 8, 2010.

Changes in the survey were the cause of some of the rate drops this week. A dwindling number of credit cards in the survey carry a fixed annual percentage rate, or APR. The removal of one fixed-rate card this week due to its new purchase rate of 59.9%, previously 23.9%, caused the average to plunge 72 basis points to 13.04%.

Several cards from a federal credit union were added this week. The average APR for variable-rate credit cards dropped 12 basis points to 14.45%.

On Tuesday, TransUnion released its annual forecast for national credit card delinquencies. The credit reporting agency, based in Chicago, predicts that the ratio of credit cardholders past due 90 or more days on at least one account will decline from a projected rate of 0.75% at the close of 2010 to 0.67% at the end of 2011. makes it easier to find cash-back credit cards and low-rate cards. You can search by issuer, card type or credit score.

-Leslie McFadden