Loan applications to buy spring ahead 5 percent

Home buyers are returning to the mortgage market, undeterred by rising mortgage rates. Mortgage applications to buy a home, viewed as a gauge of future homebuying activity, climbed 4 percent last week on a seasonally adjusted basis, according to the Mortgage Bankers Association. Purchase applications are now nearly 5 percent higher than a year ago.

The average 30-year fixed-rate mortgage was 4.23 percent, up from 4.2 percent the week prior. 

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