Freddie Mac survey finds mortgage rates rising

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Mortgage rates are rising, according to a weekly survey by Freddie Mac.

The Primary Mortgage Market Survey released by McLean-based Freddie Mac showed mortgages are following bond yields higher as the economy improves.

“Bond yields rose over the past two weeks in part due to an improving assessment of the state of the economy by the Federal Reserve, better than expected results of commercial bank stress tests and the likelihood of a second bailout for Greece,” Frank Nothaft, vice president and chief economist at Freddie Mac, said in a statement. “Meanwhile, consumers continued to reduce their debt burdens in the fourth quarter of 2011. For instance, homeowners reduced their financial obligations ratio (debt payments as a share of disposable income) to the lowest point since the second quarter of 1994.”

The average 30-fixed rate mortgage averaged 4.08 percent for the week ending Thursday, marking the first time rates have risen above 4 percent since last October.

The 30-year rate was up from an average of 3.92 percent last week. Last year at this time, the 30-year fixed rate averaged 4.81 percent.

The 15-year, fixed rate mortgage averaged 3.3 percent this week, up from 3.16 percent a week ago. Last year at this time, the rate was 4.04 percent.

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