Thursday, March 11, 2010

Mortgage interest rates curl lower

Eating hazardous to your health
The 30-year average mortgage interest rate this week, closed in on the record low average, 4.71 percent, posted Dec. 3, 2009.

by Broderick Perkins
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Deadline Newsroom - Mortgage interest rates slid more the week ending March 11, down to 4.95 percent for the average interest rate on a 30-year, fixed-rate mortgage (FRM). The rate was down from last week's 4.97 percent average, according to Freddie Mac's weekly Primary Mortgage Market Survey (PMMS).

For the week ending March 11, the rate includes an average 0.7 point. Last year, at this time, the 30-year FRMaverage was 5.03 percent.

The 30-year FRM's average interest rate this week, closed in on the record low average, 4.71 percent, posted Dec. 3, 2009 as the lowest conforming loan rate since Freddie Mac began its weekly survey in 1971.

"During a light week of mixed economic reports, mortgage rates eased somewhat," said Frank Nothaft, Freddie Mac vice president and chief economist.

"Pending existing home sales fell 7.6 percent in January, well below the market consensus of a 1 percent gain. Meanwhile, the economy lost only 36,000 jobs in February, fewer than market forecasts, and the unemployment rate held steady at 9.7 percent, " Nothaft added.

The 15-year FRM this week, averaging 4.32 percent, also slipped from last week's 4.33 percent average. The rate carried an average 0.7 point. A year ago the 15-year FRM averaged 4.64 percent.

The 5-year Treasury-indexed hybrid adjustable-rate mortgage (ARM) averaged 4.05 percent the week ending March 11, with an average 0.6 point, again, down from 4.11 percent from last week. A year ago, the 5-year ARM averaged 4.99 percent.

The 1-year Treasury-indexed ARM averaged 4.22 percent this week with an average 0.6 point, also down from last week's 4.27 percent average, according to Freddie Mac. Last year, at this time, the 1-year ARM averaged 4.80 percent.

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