Long-term mortgage rates fall, breaking 9-week rise

Markets Associated Press

  • FILE - This Thursday, Dec. 3, 2015, file photo shows an existing home for sale in Roswell, Ga.  After nine straight weeks of increases, long-term US mortgage rates fell the week of Jan. 5, 2017. (AP Photo/John Bazemore, File)

    FILE - This Thursday, Dec. 3, 2015, file photo shows an existing home for sale in Roswell, Ga. After nine straight weeks of increases, long-term US mortgage rates fell the week of Jan. 5, 2017. (AP Photo/John Bazemore, File) (The Associated Press)

  • FILE - In this July 13, 2008, file photo, shows the Freddie Mac headquarters in McLean, Va. On Jan. 5, 2017, mortgage buyer Freddie Mac says the rate on 30-year fixed-rate loans declined to an average 4.20 percent from 4.32 percent last week. 
(AP Photo/Pablo Martinez Monsivais, File)

    FILE - In this July 13, 2008, file photo, shows the Freddie Mac headquarters in McLean, Va. On Jan. 5, 2017, mortgage buyer Freddie Mac says the rate on 30-year fixed-rate loans declined to an average 4.20 percent from 4.32 percent last week. ... (AP Photo/Pablo Martinez Monsivais, File) (The Associated Press)

After nine straight weeks of increases, long-term US mortgage rates fell this week.

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Mortgage buyer Freddie Mac says the rate on 30-year fixed-rate loans declined to an average 4.20 percent from 4.32 percent last week. That was still sharply higher than a 30-year rate that averaged 3.65 percent for all of 2016, the lowest level recorded from records going back to 1971. A year ago, the benchmark rate stood at 3.97 percent.

The average for a 15-year mortgage eased to 3.44 percent from 3.55 percent last week.