Mortgage rates resume upward march

Demand for purchase loans well below last year's levels

Mortgage rates inched up again this week, bringing 30-year fixed-rate mortgages back to where they were at the beginning of the month, while demand for purchase loans was down more than 20 percent last week when compared to a year ago.

Rates had been rising steadily this year until mid-March, when economic uncertainty over the crisis in Japan and turmoil in the Middle East had investors seeking safety in bonds, and rates eased.