Mortgage Rates Up for Second Week in a Row

Are the winds of homebuyer fate shifting? It certainly seems to be the case: The average interest rate on 30-year fixed-rate mortgages increased for the second straight week, Freddie Mac announced today. The average rate was 4.37 percent; the previous week, it was 4.35 percent, after hitting a record low of 4.32 percent a week earlier. The uptick is regarded by many economists as another indicator that the economy may be recovering. Other factors include a recent drop in first-time claims for jobless benefits and a rise in August retail sales. But these still-excellent mortgage rates don't seem to be doing much for the housing market: Applications for new home loans fell around 9 percent last week from a week earlier, according to the Mortgage Bankers Association.
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