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Mortgage rates rise for 4th straight week – 30-year benchmark rises to 4.61 percent; 15-year up to 3.96 percent

NEW YORK — Rates on fixed mortgages rose for the fourth straight week this week, hitting 4.61 percent. The surge could slow refinancings and further hamper the housing market.

Freddie Mac said Thursday that the average rate on a 30-year fixed loan increased sharply from last week’s rate. And it is well above the 4.17 percent rate hit a month ago — the lowest level on records dating back to 1971.

The average rate on a 15-year fixed loan rose to 3.96 percent. Rates hit 3.57 percent last month — the lowest level since 1991….more

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