Here's a look at the state of mortgage rates from Bankrate.com's weekly national survey of large banks and thrifts conducted Jan. 6, 2010.
MortgagesRate: 5.26 percent (30-year fixed) Average Points: 0.43
Mortgage rates finally fell after five weeks of increases.
The average 30-year fixed-rate mortgage fell 7 basis points, to 5.26 percent. A basis point is one-hundredth of a percentage point.
Meanwhile, this week's average 15-year fixed-rate -- a popular option for refinancing -- slid 6 basis points, to 4.67 percent.
The average jumbo 30-year fixed edged down 1 basis point, to 6.14 percent.
Adjustable-rate mortgages split this week. The one-year adjustable-rate mortgage remained unchanged at 5.1 percent. Meanwhile, the popular 5/1 ARM slipped 3 basis points, to 4.74 percent.
Mortgage applications recovered somewhat this week, rising a seasonally adjusted 0.5 percent when compared to a week earlier, according to the Mortgage Bankers Association. For the week ending Jan. 1, applications for new purchases rose 3.6 percent, while refinancing activity was down 1.6 percent.
This week's numbers were an improvement over the previous week. For the week ending Dec. 25, overall mortgage application activity plunged 22.8 percent. Applications for new purchase slipped 4 percent, while refinancing sank 30.5 percent. The MBA did not release these figures until this week due to the Christmas holiday.
The Jan. 1 and Dec. 25 figures include adjustments for the holidays.
In other mortgage-related news, pending home sales fell 16 percent in November, ending a record streak of nine straight months of gains, according to the National Association of Realtors.
The decline -- which was much bigger than expected -- caused the NAR Pending Home Sales Index to fall to 96. Despite the decline, the index remains 15.5 percent higher than it was in November 2008.
To find and compare mortgage rates in your area, visit Bankrate's interactive search tool.
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-- Chris Kissell