Mortgage Rates Halt Three-MonthClimb

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McLEAN, Va. - (11/29/05) -- Long-term mortgage rates fell lastweek for the first time in 13 weeks, as inflation fears eased,according to Freddie Mac. The average for the benchmark 30-year,fixed-rate loan dipped to 6.28% last week, from a two-year high of6.37% the week before; and the average for the 15-year, fixed-ratemortgage fell to 5.81%, from 5.90% two weeks ago. ARM rates alsodeclined, with the one-year ARM averaging 5.14% last week, downfrom 5.20% the week before; and the five-year ARM average at 5.75%,compared to 5.86% the prior week. Frank Nothaft, chief economist atFreddie Mac, attributed to dip in rates to the drop-off ininflation fears. "Lower oil prices -- at least compared to the lastseveral months -- have helped to alleviate some of the inflationfears that the market has been experiencing lately," said Nothaft,"That helped to reduce upward pressure on interest rates last week,allowing mortgage rates to ease a bit for the first time in 13weeks."

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