Are record-low interest rates masking high-cost mortgage lending?

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Freddie Mac: Mortgage rates push buyers to market

Despite slight rises, rates still low

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Although mortgage rates remained relatively still for the week ended July 24, they are still just above the lows for 2014, helping push more potential homeowners into the market, Freddie Mac’s latest Primary Mortgage Market Survey said.

The 30-year, fixed-rated mortgage was unchanged from last week and averaged 4.13%, but is down from 4.31% a year ago.

In addition, the 15-year, FRM averaged 3.26%, up from 3.23% last week, but slightly down from 3.39% in 2013.

The 5-year, Treasury-indexed hybrid adjustable-rate mortgage came in at 2.99%, increasing from 2.97% last week, but decreasing from 3.16% a year ago.

The 1-year Treasury-indexed ARM remained frozen from last week, staying at 2.39%, but is down from 2.65% this time last year.

“Mortgage rates were little changed for the week with the 30-year fixed-rate mortgage remaining unchanged,” Frank Nothaft, vice president and chief economist with Freddie Mac, said.

“Meanwhile, we received some good news on housing with existing home sales climbing 2.6% to a seasonally adjusted annual rate of 5.04 million in June, the highest pace since October 2013,” he added.

Bankrate posted similar results, with little movement in rates.

The 30-yr, FRM dropped from 4.30% to 4.28%.

Furthermore, the 15-yr, FRM increased to 3.41%, up from 3.40% last week, while the 5/1 ARM increased to 3.37%, up from 3.33% a week ago.

“Mortgage rates have entered the summer doldrums, showing very little movement one way or another. The benchmark 30-year fixed mortgage rates has fluctuated within a very narrow range – one-tenth of a percentage point – since mid-May as investors come to grips with the idea the Federal Reserve will hold interest rates steady into 2015,” Bankrate said.  

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