US rate on 30-year mortgage falls to 4.29 percent

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(AP Photo)

(AP Photo)

WASHINGTON (AP) – Average U.S. rates on fixed mortgages eased this week after last week’s surge, declines that could prompt homebuyers to act quickly before rates rise further.

Freddie Mac says the average on the 30-year loan dropped to 4.29 percent. That’s down from 4.46 percent last week, the highest in two years and a full point more than a month ago.

The average on the 15-year mortgage fell to 3.39 percent, down from 3.50 percent last week – the highest since August 2011.

Mortgage rates jumped last week after the Federal Reserve signaled it could slow its monthly bond purchases later this year if the economy keeps improving. A pullback by the Fed would likely send long-term interest rates even higher.

Despite the gains, mortgages are still low by historical standards.

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