NEW YORK (CNNfn) - Mortgage rates continued to seesaw this week, by reversing their slide and edging up which in turn put a damper on the robust housing market, according to a report released by Freddie Mac.|
The average rate on a 30-year fixed-rate mortgage (FRM) was 8.21 percent for the week ending July 21, rising from 8.09 percent a week earlier. The same mortgage was 7.52 percent a year ago.
The average for a fixed-rate 15-year mortgage was 7.93 percent this week, up from 7.80 percent the previous week. A year ago the rate was 7.16 percent.
A one-year adjustable rate mortgage (ARM) averaged 7.32 percent, up from 7.22 percent the previous week. The same mortgage averaged 5.97 percent a year ago.
[Click here to see a breakdown of U.S. mortgage rates by region.]
"The drop in housing starts in June shows that higher mortgage rates have begun to put a damper on the bustling housing market, reinforcing the perception that the economy is finally slowing to a more sustainable pace," said Robert Van Order, chief economist for Freddie Mac.
Van Order added that although mortgage rates are higher than they were a year ago, "historically, they are still very affordable at current levels."
Freddie Mac (FRE: Research, Estimates), or Federal Home Mortgage Corp., is a publicly traded company the government established in 1970 to provide a flow of funds to mortgage lenders.
It buys mortgages from banks, bundles them, and then resells them as mortgage-backed securities. Its products and the products of other similar agencies have become increasingly popular as an alternative to government-backed bonds, particularly with international investors.