Industry News

Mortgage rates plummet on softer economic news

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Economic worries continued to push mortgage rates lower this week, with rates on 30-year fixed loans falling to their lowest levels in more than two years, Freddie Mac reported today. The average rate on 30-year fixed mortgages dropped 20 basis points in the last week, from 6.07 percent to 5.87 percent, and the average 15-year fixed was down 25 basis points during the period, from 5.68 percent to 5.43 percent. 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. Freddie Mac reported that average rates on adjustable-rate mortgages (ARMs) also declined, with the five-year Treasury-indexed hybrid ARM falling from 5.78 percent to 5.63 percent and the one-year ARM dropping from 5.47 percent to 5.37 percent. Points on these loans averaged 0.5 and 0.4, respectively. "The latest employment report showed that the economy added 18,000 jobs in December, the smallest gain since August 2003, and the unemploymen...