Average long-term mortgage rates declined this week, with the benchmark 30-year loan slipping back below 3 per cent, reported mortgage buyer Freddie Mac on Thursday. The average rate for a 30-year mortgage eased to 2.99 per cent from 3.01 per cent last week. The rate stood at 2.87 per cent this time last year. It peaked this year at 3.18 per cent in April.
The rate for a 15-year loan, a popular option for homeowners refinancing their mortgages, fell to 2.23 per cent from 2.28 per cent last week.
The Federal Reserve recently signaled its belief that the economy has recovered sufficiently from the pandemic recession for the central bank to soon begin dialing back the emergency aid it provided after the spread of coronavirus.
The number of Americans applying for unemployment benefits fell last week, another sign that the US job market and economy continue their steady recovery from last year's coronavirus recession. Jobless claims fell by 38,000, to 326,000, the first drop in four weeks, the Labor Department reported.