Industry News

Consumer spending jolts mortgage rates

News gives financial markets inflation jitters

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Mortgage rates climbed for the third straight week following recent reports that home sales and consumer spending performed better than expected in November, Freddie Mac and Bankrate.com reported today in their weekly surveys. In Freddie Mac's survey, the 30-year fixed-rate mortgage climbed this week to an average 6.18 percent from 6.13 percent last week, and the 15-year fixed-rate mortgage gained from 5.89 percent to 5.93 percent. Points, which are fees charged by lenders for loan processing expressed as a percent of the loan, averaged 0.4 on the 30- and 15-year loans. "Mortgage rates edged up over the week following news of a jump in consumer spending in November," said Frank Nothaft, Freddie Mac vice president and chief economist, in a statement. "Financial markets were concerned that stronger spending could keep inflation elevated. These worries were further compounded by the releases of new- and existing-home sales for the same month, which both exceeded market forecasts and ...