GMAC Mortgage Corp., Elkins Park, Pa., is so excited about falling mortgage rates that it put out a press release about them.

The company points out that buyers who previously would have qualified for a $91,000 loan at 9% can qualify for $100,000 at 8%.

"Lower rates also renew interest in refinancing," said Pat Sheehy, managing director of residential lending. "The old rule that says you shouldn't refinance unless you can save 2% on your interest rate no longer applies."

Mr. Sheehy added that some consumers might take the opportunity to refinance as a way to shorten the term of their mortgage while keeping monthly payments the same.

GMAC Mortgage is a unit of General Motors Acceptance Corp.

With a strong rally continuing in the long end of the Treasury bond market, the 30-year issue was trading with a yield of 6.96% at midweek.

The rally further flattened the yield curve, with the gap between one- year and 30-year issues shrinking to only about one percentage point. Such a situation encourages borrowers to refinance from adjustable-rate mortgages into fixed-rate models.

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