Mortgage rates

Mortgage rates continued their decline this week, with the 30-year fixed-rate average having met or matched a record low in 10 of the past 11 weeks, according to the latest data released Thursday by Freddie Mac.

The 30-year fixed-rate average fell to 3.62 percent, down from 3.66 percent last week and 4.60 percent a year ago.

The 15-year fixed-rate average remained below 3 percent for the sixth consecutive week. The average of 2.89 percent was down from 2.94 percent last week and 3.75 percent a year ago.

The hybrid adjustable rate mortgages lingered below 3 percent this week as well. The one-year ARM was 2.68 percent, down from 2.74 percent a week ago and 3.01 percent a year ago.

The five-year ARM remained at 2.79 percen this week, the same as last week, down from 3.30 a year ago

The recent release of data showing consumers are spending less and a contraction in the manufacturing industry drove long-term Treasury bond yields lower during the week, which allowed fixed mortgage rates to plunge to new all-time record lows, according to Frank Nothaft, Freddie Mac vice president and chief economist.

“Growth in personal expenditures was revised downward to an annualized rate of 2.5 percent in the final GDP estimates for the first quarter of the year,” Nothaft said in a statement. “In addition, monthly consumer spending in April was revised from a 0.3 percent gain to 0.1 percent and was unchanged in May. Finally, the Institute for Supply Management reported that manufacturing shrank in June, the first decline since July 2009.”

Kathy Orton is a reporter and Web editor for the Real Estate section. She covers the Washington metropolitan area housing market.

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