Though the economy has clobbered earnings and spurred layoffs across corporate America, the mortgage industry is basking in a refinancing boom — adding staff and gorging on new business.

Behind the boom is a six-month slide in rates, according to Freddie Mac data — from a peak last May of 8.64% to 6.79% in mid-January (and 7.02% after an uptick in last week’s report).

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