March 14, 2019 / 2:49 PM / 4 days ago

UPDATE 1-U.S. fixed mortgage rates fall to 13-month lows - Freddie Mac

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NEW YORK, March 14 (Reuters) - Interest rates on U.S. fixed-rate mortgages declined to 13-month lows in step with lower bond yields due to worries about a slowing economy, solid investor demand for debt supply and Brexit, Freddie Mac said on Thursday.

Thirty-year mortgage rates averaged 4.31 percent in the week ended March 14, which was the lowest level since 4.22 percent in the week of Feb. 1, 2018. This was below the 4.41 percent the week before, the mortgage finance agency said.

The average interest rate on 15-year mortgages fell to 3.76 percent, which was the lowest in 13 months and 0.07 percentage point from the previous week, Freddie Mac said.

Borrowing costs on five-year adjustable-rate mortgages slipped to 3.84 percent, matching the level reached two weeks earlier.

“While these low rates will certainly get the attention of prospective homebuyers, the supply of homes for sale remains stubbornly low,” it said in a statement.

The decline in home lending costs since late 2018 has not invigorated the real estate sector.

Earlier Thursday, the Commerce Department said U.S. home sales fell 6.9 percent in January to an annualized pace of 607,000, which was a weaker pace than what analysts polled by Reuters had forecast.

In the bond market, benchmark 10-year Treasury note yields was 2.621 percent, compared with 2.636 percent a week earlier.

Reporting by Richard Leong Editing by Chizu Nomiyama and David Gregorio

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