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US mortgage rates edge up; 30-year at 4.41 percent

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WASHINGTON (AP) — US long-term mortgage rates rose modestly this week, but they remain slightly lower than they were a year ago.

Mortgage buyer Freddie Mac says the average rate on the benchmark 30-year fixed-rate mortgage increased from 4.35 percent to 4.41 percent. The average was 4.46 percent a year ago, but rates climbed for much of 2018 and peaked at nearly 5 percent in early November.

The average rate this week for 15-year fixed-rate loans rose from 3.77 percent to 3.83 percent.

Mortgage rates often move in sync with the interest paid on 10-year U. Treasury notes. Rising rates in 2018 suppressed home sales, but the lower levels in recent months point to the possibility of sales gains this year.