Long-term U.S. mortgage rates climbed for the fifth straight week amid investors’ growing concern about inflation. Mortgage giant Freddie Mac said Thursday the average rate on 30-year, fixed-rate mortgages shot up to 4.32 percent this week, up from 4.22 percent last week and the highest since December 2016. A year ago, it stood at 4.17 percent.
The rate on 15-year, fixed-rate loans, popular among homeowners who refinance, rose to 3.77 percent from 3.68 percent last week and the highest since May 2011. It was 3.39 percent a year ago.
A strong U.S. economy is raising fears that inflation may be on the rise; investors are demanding higher interest rates. The yield on 10-year Treasury notes, which influences mortgage rates, has risen the past week to 2.88 percent from 2.78 percent.