Long-Term Mortgage RatesDecline

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McLEAN, Va. - (03/24/06) -- Mortgage rates dipped this week, forthe second week in a row, after rising to three year highs,according to Freddie Mac. The average for the 30-year, fixed-ratemortgage declined slightly to 6.32% this week, from 6.34% lastweek; while the average for the 15-year, fixed-rate loan slipped to5.97%, from 5.98%. ARM rates moved slightly higher, with theaverage for the five-year ARM climbing to 5.41% this week, from5.37% last week; and the average for the one-year ARM rising to5.96%, from 5.93%. Analysts attributed the decline in long-termrates to an easing in inflationary indicators. "The most recenteconomic indicators ... showed that inflation is, indeed, beingheld in check. That news allowed long-term mortgage rates to drifta little lower,'' said Frank Nothaft, chief economist for FreddieMac.

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