Mary Ellen Podmolik of the Chicago Tribune reported this morning that average fixed mortgage interest rates fell for the fourth straight week, edging closer to the 4 percent mark. She found that the average rate on a 30-year, fixed-rate mortgage was 4.14 percent this week, compared with 4.20 percent last week and 3.59 percent in the same week a year ago, according to Freddie Mac's rate survey. It was the lowest rate recorded in the agency's weekly survey since Oct. 31. Meanwhile, a 15-year, fixed-rate mortgage carried an average rate of 3.25 percent this week. That compared with 3.29 percent last week and 2.77 percent a year ago. She states that a greater-than-expected slip in the nation's industrial productivity in April, following two months of gains helped drive down rates this week.
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