Your Black Money: Mortgage Rates Fall Again

29 Aug

Rates on 30-year mortgages fell for the second straight week, declining to the lowest level in more than a month.

Freddie Mac, the mortgage company, reported Thursday that 30-year, fixed-rate mortgages averaged 6.40% this week, down from 6.47% last week. That was the lowest since the week of July 17 when 30-year mortgages stood at 6.26%.

The 30-year mortgage has been above 6% since late May, reflecting the view of financial markets that rising inflation pressures will keep the Federal Reserve from cutting interest rates further even though the economy is still mired in a period of significant weakness.

The housing market continues to struggle to emerge from its worst slump in decades. Reports this week showed that sales of existing homes, the largest part of the market, and new homes managed to post small increases in July although activity still remains far below the level of last summer.

Frank Nothaft, chief economist at Freddie Mac, said one hopeful sign was that the pace of home price declines has slowed in recent months.

 

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