Industry News

Slow economy keeps lid on mortgage rates

Home purchases increase as 30-year fixed holds in mid-fives

Mortgage rates this week were virtually unchanged from last week, as markets felt the effect of declining consumer confidence and weak job growth, according to surveys conducted by mortgage buyer Freddie Mac and Bankrate. In Freddie Mac's weekly survey, the 30-year fixed-rate mortgage averaged 5.58 percent for the week ended today, unchanged from last week. The average for the 15-year fixed-rate mortgage this week is 4.89 percent, up very slightly from last week's average of 4.87 percent. Points on both the 30- and 15-year averaged 0.7. One-year Treasury-indexed adjustable-rate mortgages averaged 3.5 percent this week, with an average 0.7 point, down from 3.53 percent last week. This is the lowest the one-year ARM has been since the week ended July 4, 2003, when it averaged 3.49 percent. "Financial markets seem to have locked into this level of mortgage rates. There was very little movement either way this week," said Frank Nothaft, Freddie Mac chief economist. "And it looks like ...

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