February 21, 2008 / 7:02 PM / 12 years ago

US 30-year mortgage rates rise in latest week

WASHINGTON, Feb 21 (Reuters) - Interest rates on U.S. 30-year mortgages rose in the latest week, according to a weekly survey released by Freddie Mac FRE.N on Thursday.

U.S. 30-year mortgage rates averaged 6.04 percent compared to 5.72 percent a week earlier, while 15-year mortgages increased to an average of 5.64 percent from 5.25 percent.

One-year adjustable rate mortgages (ARM) averaged 4.98 percent in the week, down slightly from 5.00 percent last week.

Freddie Mac said the “5/1” ARM, set at a fixed rate for five years and adjustable each following year, averaged 5.37 percent, up from 5.19 percent last week.

“As the spread between long-term fixed-rates and adjustable-rates widens, it’s possible we could see a slight increase in the popularity of adjustable-rate mortgages,” said Frank Nothaft, Freddie Mac vice president and chief economist, in a statement.

In the same period a year ago, 30-year mortgages averaged 6.22 percent, 15-year mortgages 5.97 percent and the one-year ARM 5.49 percent. The 5/1 ARM averaged 5.96 percent.

Lenders charged an average of 0.6 percent in fees and points on 30-year mortgages and the one-year ARM, both up from 0.4 percent last week.

Fees and points on 15-year mortgages and the 5/1 ARM averaged 0.5 percent, also up from 0.4 percent a week earlier.

Freddie Mac is a mortgage finance company chartered by Congress that buys mortgages from lenders and packages them into securities to sell to investors or to hold in its own portfolio. (Reporting by Ayesha Rascoe; Editing by Tom Hals)

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