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U.S. mortgage interest rates reach a 12 year high, demand falters

The bulk of the run up, however, has occurred since the start of the year, causing the fastest climb in home-financing costs in decades as the Fed abandoned a cautious approach to raising its benchmark overnight lending rate in favor of swifter and more decisive action to bring down persistently high inflation. The central bank is also set to decide at its next meeting on May 3-4 to begin reducing its portfolio of $8.5 trillion of U.S. Treasuries and mortgage-backed securities, a stash of assets that had helped keep consumer borrowing costs – for mortgages in particular – low throughout the COVID-19 pandemic. Those expectations for Fed tightening actions have led to a surge in Treasury yields as financial markets reacted.

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