Mortgage Rates Hold Steady

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WASHINGTON – Mortgage rates barely budged this week, after rising slightly the previous three weeks, according to Freddie Mac.

The average for the 30-year, fixed-rate loan inched up to 4.81% this week, from 4.80% last week; while the average for the 15-year mortgage edged lower to 4.08%, from 4.09%.

ARM rates also were flat, with the average for the five-year ARM moving down to 4.69%, from 4.70%; and the average for the one-year ARM unchanged at 3.26%.

“Mortgage rates held relatively stable this week on news that the economy improved and inflation remained in check at the end of 2010,” said Frank Nothaft, chief economist for Freddie Mac. “In the fourth quarter, the economy grew at a 3.2% annualized rate, compared to 2.6% in the third quarter, and was led by a 4.4% gain in consumer spending. In addition, the core price index for consumer expenditures rose by an annualized rate of 0.4%, which was the smallest increase ever since records began in 1959.”


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