Mortgage rates are at new lows for a third consecutive week as investor demand for mortgage-backed securities that fund most home loans continues to be more than adequate to satisfy demand for mortgages.

Rates for 30-year fixed-rate mortgages averaged 4.19 percent with an average 0.8 point for the week ending Oct. 14, down from 4.27 percent last week and 4.92 percent a year ago, Freddie Mac said in releasing the results of its weekly Primary Mortgage Market Survey.

That’s a new low in Freddie Mac’s records, which date back to 1971. Rates haven’t been lower since April 1951, according to another set of data based on FHA rates that goes back to 1948.

Rates for 15-year fixed-rate mortgages averaged 3.62 percent with an average 0.7 point, down from 3.72 percent last week and 4.37 percent a year ago. That’s a new low in Freddie Mac records dating to 1991.

Rates for 5-year Treasury-indexed hybrid adjustable-rate mortgage (ARM) loans averaged 3.47 percent with an average 0.6 point, unchanged from a week ago but down from 4.38 percent a year ago. Rates on 5-year ARM loans have never been lower since Freddie Mac began tracking them in 2005.

"September’s employment report held no big surprises to financial markets, allowing long-term bond yields and fixed mortgage rates to continue to ease," said Freddie Mac Chief Economist Frank Nothaft. "As a result, both the 30-year and 15-year fixed mortgage rates hit all-time record lows for the third consecutive week."

Although the latest slide in mortgage rates has sparked another refinancing boom, demand for purchase loans remains down 37.1 percent from a year ago, according to a separate survey by the Mortgage Bankers Association.

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