US mortgage rates rise to 3-month high

WASHINGTON (AP) — U.S. long-term mortgage rates rose slightly this week to their highest point in 12 weeks, though they remain far below their levels of a year ago.

Mortgage giant Freddie Mac said Thursday that the average rate for a 30-year fixed mortgage rose to 3.75% from 3.69%the previous week. That’s down from 4.9% at the same time last year and by historic standards is very low.

Lower rates have helped reinvigorate the housing market, which stumbled last year. Sales of existing homes reached a 17-month high in August, though they fell modestly in September. New home sales jumped 15.5% in September from a year earlier. Single-family home construction has also ticked up.

The average rate on a 15-year mortgage moved up to 3.18% from 3.15% a week ago.

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