Mortgage rates edged a hair higher this week.
The average 30-year fixed-rate ticked up 1 basis point, to 5.56 percent. A basis point is one-hundredth of a percentage point.
This week's average 15-year fixed-rate -- a popular option for refinancing -- slipped 1 basis point, to 4.88 percent.
The average jumbo 30-year fixed rose 13 basis points, to 6.62 percent.
Adjustable-rate mortgages were split. The one-year adjustable-rate mortgage sank 15 basis points, to 5.08 percent. The popular 5/1 ARM rose 2 basis points, to 4.95 percent.
Mortgage application activity slid a seasonally adjusted 6.3 percent when compared to a week earlier, according to the Mortgage Bankers Association.
For the week ending July 24, refinancing activity was down 10.9 percent while applications for new purchases remained unchanged.
Several reports released this week suggested that the nation's housing market finally may be reaching a bottom. For example:
- New home sales rose 11 percent in June when compared to May, according to the Department of Commerce. It was the third straight month of increasing transactions.
- Sales of existing homes also increased for the third consecutive month, registering a 3.6-percent gain in June, according to the National Association of Realtors.
- U.S. home prices rose on a month-to-month basis in May, the first such increase in three years, according to the S&P/Case-Shiller Home Price Index. Prices grew 0.5 percent in May in the survey, which measures 20 major metro areas across the country. Prices were still down 17.1 percent year over year, but this was the fourth straight month of improvement on an annual basis.
To find and compare mortgage rates in your area, visit Bankrate's interactive search tool.
-- Chris Kissell