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Mortgage Rates Retreat on Weak Economic News

December's ""discouraging jobs report"":https://themreport.com/articles/december-jobs-report-shows-paltry-growth-plunge-in-labor-force-2014-01-10 caused mortgage rates to pull back once again this week.

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""Freddie Mac's"":http://www.freddiemac.com/ weekly Primary Mortgage Market Survey shows the 30-year fixed-rate mortgage (FRM) falling to an average rate of 4.41 percent (0.7 point) for the week ending January 16, down from 4.51 percent last week. A year ago, the 30-year fixed average sat at 3.38 percent.

The 15-year FRM averaged 3.45 percent (0.7 point) this week, down from 3.56 percent previously.

Adjustable rates were flat to down this week. The 5-year Treasury-indexed hybrid adjustable-rate mortgage (ARM) averaged 3.10 percent (0.5 point), down from 3.15 percent, while the 1-year ARM averaged 2.56 percent (0.5 point), unchanged from last week.

""Mortgage rates drifted downward this week amid signs of a weakening economic recovery,"" explained Freddie Mac chief economist Frank Nothaft.

In addition to December's disappointing jobs report--which showed payroll growth of only 74,000 along with a substantial drop in labor participation--Nothaft cited weak retail sales numbers as another factor in this week's rate movements.

Finance site ""Bankrate.com"":http://www.bankrate.com/ also reported declines in fixed and adjustable rates for the week. The site's weekly national survey shows the 30-year fixed falling to 4.57 percent, while the 15-year fixed was down to 3.62 percent.

The 5/1 ARM, meanwhile, fell to 3.40 percent, according to Bankrate's data.

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