Freddie Mac generally upbeat on '06

July 10, 2006 at 3:58 PM

MCLEAN, Va., July 10 (UPI) -- Freddie Mac, the U.S. chartered mortgage lender, expects 2006 to be the third best year ever for the national housing market.

That optimism comes despite rising interest rates, the company said Monday in a statement.

"Though the direction of housing activity is unambiguously heading cooler, we remain confident that the climate is still temperate and that 2006 will finish as the third strongest year ever for the national housing market."

The company also predicted "some volatility in mortgage rates as they continue to bounce around a gently rising trend, averaging 6.8 percent over the remainder of the year for 30-year fixed-rate mortgages."

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