Industry News

Mixed economic signals keep lid on mortgage rates

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Long-term mortgage rates were mixed again this week as markets tried to make sense of strong GDP growth, falling consumer confidence and increased demand for bonds, Freddie Mac and reported today. In Freddie Mac's survey, the 30-year fixed-rate mortgage held at an average 6.24 percent -- a six-month low -- while the average 15-year fixed rate sank from 5.9 percent to 5.88 percent, also a six-month low. Points, or fees lenders charge for loan processing expressed as a percent of the loan, averaged 0.4 on the 30- and 15-year loans. Average rates on adjustable-rate mortgages (ARMs) also varied this week, with the five-year Treasury-indexed hybrid ARM rising from 5.89 percent to 5.96 percent and the one-year Treasury-indexed ARM holding at 5.5 percent, its lowest level in six months. Points on the five-year and one-year loans averaged 0.4 and 0.5, respectively. "Higher productivity growth in the third quarter coupled with a larger-than-expected decline in consumer c...