Industry NewsMortgage

Mortgage rates surge again

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Mortgage rates surged for a second week in a row this week, with conservative investments like Treasury bonds and mortgage-backed securities looking less attractive to investors amid growing signs that an economic recovery is under way.Rates on 30-year fixed-rate mortgages averaged 4.08 percent with an average of 0.8 point for the week ending March 22, up from 3.92 percent last week but still well below the 4.81 percent average at the same time last year, Freddie Mac said in releasing the results of its weekly Primary Mortgage Market Survey.It was the first time since October that rates on the "plain vanilla" loan favored by most homebuyers have been above 4 percent. Rates on 30-year fixed-rate mortgages hit an all-time low in records dating to 1971 of 3.87 percent during the first three weeks of February.A separate survey by the Mortgage Bankers Association showed that while demand for purchase loans was down only slightly last week, requests for refinancings fell 9.3 percen...