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.Investors, at least for now, seem to have put their worries behind them, and money is flowing back into stocks. Reduced demand for bonds that fund most mortgage loans means lower prices and higher yields on those investments -- and higher rates for borrowers.Rates on 30-year fixed-rate mortgage averaged 4.86 percent with an average 0.7 point for the week ending March 31, up from 4.81 percent last week but down from 5.08 percent a year ago, Freddie Mac said in releasing the results of its latest Primary Mortgage Market Survey.The 30-year fixed-rate mortgage hit an ...
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