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Purchase Apps UpAverage 30-year 5.67%

February 7, 2008

By SAM GARCIA

Mortgage rates were mostly unchanged during the latest week, though purchase activity picked up.

The 30-year fixed rate average was 5.67% for the week ending Feb. 7, according to Freddie Mac’s survey of 125 thrifts, commercial banks and mortgage lenders. The 30-year eased 1 basis point from the previous week but was 61 BPS better than the same week during 2007.

The average 15-year fixed rate nudged down to 5.15% from 5.17% a week earlier, Freddie said.

The 10-year Treasury yield, which fixed mortgage rates tend to follow, was 3.64% near midday, according to data from CNNMoney. A week ago, the 10-year yield stood around 3.63%.

Bankrate.com’s survey respondents were split over the direction of mortgage rates during the next month-and-a-half, with more than a third forecasting a rise and just under a third each predicting a decline or no change.

The average for the 5-year Treasury-indexed hybrid adjustable-rate mortgage was 5.21% in Freddie’s latest survey, 11 BPS better than the prior week.

The 1-year Treasury-indexed ARM eased just 2 BPS from the past week to average 5.03% this week, according to Freddie. The 1-year Treasury itself yielded 2.05% yesterday, tumbling from 2.30% a week earlier.

Another ARM index, the 6-month London Interbank Offered Rate, was 3.11% for the week ending Feb. 6, down from 3.18% seven days earlier, Bankrate.com reported.

ARMs accounted for almost 9% of loan applications tracked by the Mortgage Bankers Association for the week ending Feb. 1, up just slightly from a week earlier.

MBA’s latest survey of mortgage bankers, commercial banks and thrifts indicated total applications rose 3 percent from the previous week, bringing the Market Composite Index to 1086.6. The increase was fueled by a 10% gain in purchase applications and a 1% increase in refinance activity. Refinances accounted for 69% of the latest week’s activity, off from 73% the prior week.


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