Chart showing MBA cutting mortgage forecast

Mortgage rates started the week at their highest level in 20 years as the Mortgage Bankers Association continued to pare back expectations for mortgage originations this year.

Investopedia.com reported that the average rate for a 30-year fixed-rate purchase mortgage was 6.96% on Monday. Compared with average weekly data from Freddie Mac going back to 1971, it was the highest rate since it was 6.99% for the week ending April 12, 2002.

The Mortgage Bankers Association last week lowered its forecast for fourth-quarter purchase originations for the sixth month in a row. It said it now expects homebuyers will take out $372 billion in mortgages in the fourth quarter, down 23% from a year earlier and down 4% from the $388 billion it forecast for the third quarter.

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Jim DuPlessis

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