Interest rates on fixed-rate loans dipped back down to near or below 6 percent this week, thanks to reduced fears of inflation and continued weakness in the housing market, Freddie Mac said.

The average rate for a 30-year fixed-rate mortgage (FRM) averaged 6.04 percent with an average 0.6 point for the week ending Oct. 23, down from 6.46 percent last week and 6.33 percent a year ago, according to Freddie Mac’s latest Primary Mortgage Market Survey.

The 15-year FRM averaged 5.72 percent with an average 0.6 point, down from 6.14 percent last week and 5.99 percent a year ago.

Interest rates on fixed-rate loans dipped back down to near or below 6 percent this week, thanks to reduced fears of inflation and continued weakness in the housing market, Freddie Mac said.

The average rate for a 30-year fixed-rate mortgage (FRM) averaged 6.04 percent with an average 0.6 point for the week ending Oct. 23, down from 6.46 percent last week and 6.33 percent a year ago, according to Freddie Mac’s latest Primary Mortgage Market Survey.

The 15-year FRM averaged 5.72 percent with an average 0.6 point, down from 6.14 percent last week and 5.99 percent a year ago.

"Long-term mortgage rates fell this week amid news of tame inflation and a weaker housing market," said Frank Nothaft, Freddie Mac vice president and chief economist, in a statement.

Nothaft noted that new construction on one-family homes fell 12 percent in September, to an annual rate of 544,000 homes, the lowest since February 1982. One-unit housing starts were 70 percent below a peak set in January 2006, according to the Department of Commerce.

Rates for adjustable-rate mortgage (ARM) loans were mixed, the survey said.

Five-year Treasury-indexed hybrid ARMs averaged 6.06 percent with an average 0.6 point, down from 6.14 percent last week but up slightly from 6.03 percent a year ago.

One-year Treasury-indexed ARMs averaged 5.23 percent with an average 0.5 point, up from 5.16 percent last week but down from 5.66 percent a year ago.

***

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