Mortgage Rates Hold Near Lows

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WASHINGTON, Sept. 22 (UPI) — Long-term mortgage rates were little changed, holding near record lows for the week, the U.S. Federal Home Loan Mortgage Corp. reported Thursday.

Freddie Mac said the average interest rates for 15-year loans fell from 3.3 percent to 3.29 percent while interest rates on 30-year fixed-rate loans held steady at 4.09 percent.

Rates for 15-year fixed-rate mortgages a year ago stood at 3.82 percent. Rates for 30-year mortgages a year ago averaged 4.37 percent.

Frank Nothaft, Freddie Mac’s vice president and chief economist, said, “A sluggish economy and investor concerns over the European debt markets left mortgage rates largely unchanged this week.”

Housing market news was mixed in the week, Nothaft said. New housing construction declined in August and builder confidence remains low. “Existing home sales, however, rose to 503 million homes in August, which represents the strongest annualized rate since March of this year,” Nothaft said in a statement.

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