Mortgage rates continue to drop: Freddie

Frank Nothaft

Both 30-year and 15-year fixed mortgage rates continued to decline during the week ending Aug. 12, according to a market report released today by Freddie Mac. The 30-year rate hit 4.44 percent this past week, down from 4.49 percent the prior week and 5.29 percent during the same week a year earlier. The 15-year fixed rate mortgage saw a record low, with average rates nationwide hovering around 3.92 percent. Last week’s rate was 3.95 percent, while the same week in 2009 saw an average rate of 4.68 percent. Frank Nothaft, vice president and chief economist with Freddie Mac, said that the low rates were good for the battered housing market. “Low rates are helping to heal many battered local housing markets by increasing home purchase activity,” Nothaft. Even so, this week’s mortgage bankers association report showed that, despite the low rate nationwide, there has been little mortgage application activity in recent weeks. TRD

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