Mortgage rates buffeted by Fed speculation

Aug. 29, 2013 at 6:33 PM

WASHINGTON, Aug. 29 (UPI) -- Average U.S. mortgage rates fell in the week ending Thursday in response to concerns over a monetary policy change, the Federal Home Loan Mortgage Corp. said.

Freddie Mac said interest rates were "fluctuating over taper turbulence," referring to speculation the U.S. Federal Reserve would be winding down its $85 billion per month quantitative easing program in the near future.

In the week ending Aug. 29, average interest rates on 30-year fixed rate loans fell to 4.51 percent with an average 0.7 point, down from the prior week when it averaged 4.58 percent.

A year ago at this time, rates for 30-year fixed-rate loans averaged 3.59 percent.

Rates for 15-year fixed-rate mortgages averaged 3.54 percent with an average 0.7 point in the week, down from last week when it averaged 3.6 percent. A year ago in the same week, 15-year fixed-rate loans averaged 2.86 percent.

Rates for 5-year Treasury-indexed hybrid adjustable-rate mortgages averaged 3.24 percent this week with an average 0.5 point. Last week, rates for these loans averaged 3.21 percent. A year ago, they averaged 2.86 percent.

Rates for 1-year Treasury-indexed adjustable-rate loans averaged 2.64 percent in the week with an average 0.4 point, a drop from the prior week's average rate of 2.67 percent.

Last year over the same period, rates for 1-year adjustable-rate loans averaged 2.63 percent.

One point is equal to 1 percent of the amount of the loan and is typically paid up front. It includes a corresponding discount on the loan's long-term interest rates.

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