WASHINGTON â€“ Aug. 30, 2013 â€“ Average U.S. rates for fixed
mortgages declined this week but stayed close to their highest levels in two
Mortgage buyer Freddie Mac said Thursday that the average rate on the 30-year loan fell to 4.51 percent. That's down from 4.58 percent last week, the highest since July 2011.
The average on the 15-year fixed mortgage dipped to 3.54 percent from 3.60 percent, also the highest since July 2011.
Rates have risen more than a full percentage point since May when Chairman Ben Bernanke first signaled that the Federal Reserve might reduce its bond purchases later this year. The purchases have helped keep long-term interest rates low.
Mortgage rates remain low by historical standards. But the sudden spike in rates could slow the housing recoveryâ€™s momentum.
To calculate average mortgage rates, Freddie Mac surveys lenders across the country on Monday through Wednesday each week. The average doesnâ€™t include extra fees, known as points, which most borrowers must pay to get the lowest rates. One point equals 1 percent of the loan amount.
The average fee for a 30-year mortgage declined to 0.7 point from 0.8 point. The fee for a 15-year loan was unchanged at 0.7 point.
The average rate on a one-year adjustable-rate mortgage fell to 2.64 percent from 2.67 percent. The fee slipped to 0.4 point from 0.5 point.
The average rate on a five-year adjustable mortgage rose to 3.24 percent from 3.21 percent. The fee held at 0.5 point.
Copyright Â© 2013 The Associated Press, Marcy Gordon, AP business writer. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.
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