Bernanke sends mortgage rates lower
Rates continue 'yo-yoing,' but comments from Fed chairman add downward pressure. 30-year dips to 5.55%.
NEW YORK (CNNMoney.com) -- Home mortgage rates ticked lower after Federal Reserve Chairman Ben Bernanke said the central bank will continue to keep interest rates low.
The average 30-year fixed mortgage slipped to 5.55% from 5.58% the week prior, and the 15-year fixed fell to 4.89% from 4.93%, according to the weekly national survey from Bankrate.com.
Recently rates have been "yo-yoing as corporate earnings announcements and economic data toy with investor sentiment," the report noted.
On Wednesday Bernanke gave his semi-annual congressional testimony on the state of the economy, saying the central bank will "likely keep interest rates low for an extended period of time," the Bankrate report noted.
A separate Thursday report showed sales of existing homes disappointed again in June, rising just 3.6%.
Current mortgage rates remain much lower than last year's levels, when the average 30-year fixed was 6.77%, according to Bankrate.com.
At the current rate of 5.55%, the monthly payment on a $200,000 mortgage would be $1,141.86, or about $158 less than the monthly payment at last year's rate.