US mortgage rates jump to highest level in 7 years

 
 
Updated 11/8/2018 12:09 PM
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  • FILE- In this Oct 2, 2018, file photo a for sale sign stands outside a home on the market in the north Denver suburb of Thornton, Colo. On Thursday, Nov. 8, Freddie Mac reports on this week's average U.S. mortgage rates.

    FILE- In this Oct 2, 2018, file photo a for sale sign stands outside a home on the market in the north Denver suburb of Thornton, Colo. On Thursday, Nov. 8, Freddie Mac reports on this week's average U.S. mortgage rates. Associated Press

U.S. mortgage rates jumped this week to the highest level in seven years, a trend that is pulling down home sales and slowing home price growth.

Mortgage buyer Freddie Mac said Thursday that the average rate on a 30-year, fixed rate mortgage rose to 4.94 percent, from 4.83 percent last week. A year ago the rate was 3.9 percent.

The average rate on a 15-year, fixed rate loan increased to 4.33 percent, from 4.23 percent last week.

Higher rates have kept many would-be purchasers on the sidelines. Sales of existing homes have fallen for six straight months, and sales of newly-built homes have declined for four months.

Freddie Mac says home price increases are slowing as a result, particularly in higher-priced coastal cities.

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