US 30-year mortgage rate steady at 4.57 pct.

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Associated Press

Posted on September 12, 2013 at 8:01 AM

Updated Thursday, Sep 12 at 9:00 AM

WASHINGTON (AP) — Average U.S. rates on fixed mortgages held steady this week, hovering near two-year highs. But rates could change quickly next week when the Federal Reserve addresses its bond purchase program.

Mortgage buyer Freddie Mac says the average rate on the 30-year loan was unchanged from last week at 4.57 percent, just below the two-year high of 4.58 percent reached Aug. 22.

The average on the 15-year fixed mortgage held at 3.59 percent. The two-year high of 3.60 percent was hit on Aug. 22.

Long-term mortgage rates have risen more than a full percentage point since May, when Chairman Ben Bernanke first signaled that the Fed could reduce its bond purchases this year. The purchases have been intended to keep long-term loan rates extremely low.

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