Average US 30-year mortgage rate slips to 4.02 percent

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Rates on adjustable five-year loans declined to 3.13 percent from 3.14 percent last week. The rate stood at 3.58 percent a year ago and averaged 3.65 percent in 2016, the lowest level in records dating to 1971.

"The 30-year mortgage rate fell 3 basis points this week to 4.02%", said Freddie Mac chief economist Sean Becketti.

The rate on 15-year mortgages eased to 3.27 percent from 3.29 percent last week.

The larger jumbo 30-year fixed slid to 4.08 percent, and the average 15-year fixed mortgage rate dropped to 3.35 percent. Because mortgage rates tend to follow the same path as long-term bonds, it is likely that rates will continue to fall in the coming week.

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Freddie Mac makes home possible for millions of families and individuals by providing mortgage capital to lenders.

Political uncertainty is causing anxious investors, who are pulling back from stocks and moving into bonds. USA stocks plunged on Wednesday to the lowest level in a year as the controversy swirled over President Donald Trump's firing of former FBI Director James Comey, and the possible divulgence of classified information to the Russians.

Bankrate's national weekly mortgage survey is conducted each Wednesday from data provided by the top 10 banks and thrifts in 10 top markets. Only small changes have been noted to 10-year Treasury yields, which often mirror mortgage rate trends. One point equals 1 percent of the loan amount. The market composite index - a measure of total loan application volume - decreased 4.1 percent. "Purchase volume is running more than 9 percent above last year's pace, with conventional purchase application volume up more than 12 percent".

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