30-year mortgage rate falls to 4% (by Ruth Mantell)
WASHINGTON (MarketWatch) - Mortgage rates dropped in the latest week as concern over Europe's financial situation drove investors to U.S. securities, Freddie Mac said Thursday, reporting that the average rate on the 30-year fixed-rate mortgage fell to 4.00% in the week ending Nov. 3, compared with 4.10% in the prior week. "Market concerns over the European debt market drew investors to U.S. Treasury securities, lowering bond yields and mortgage rates. Meanwhile, on the home front, the U.S. economy continued its gradual recovery," said Frank Nothaft, vice president and chief economist of Freddie Mac. A year ago, the 30-year rate was at 4.24%, according to the buyer of residential mortgages. To obtain the latest rate, payment of an average 0.7 point was required. A point is 1% of the mortgage amount, charged in prepaid interest. The average rate on the 15-year fixed-rate mortgage fell to 3.31% in the latest week from 3.38% in the prior week. Meanwhile, the 5-year Treasury-indexed hybrid adjustable-rate mortgage fell to 2.96% from 3.08%. The 1-year Treasury-indexed ARM declined to 2.88% from 2.90%.