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by Trevor Sines

Mortgage rates stayed close to the highest levels in more than 2 years today, even though underlying bond markets left plenty of room for improvement.  Typically, when bond markets improve as much as they did today, rates would be noticeably lower.  The inconsistency has to do with more conservative lender pricing strategies surrounding the holiday season.

Why does this happen?  There can be a variety of reasons.  At the most basic level, keeping rates higher than they otherwise might be is a way to decrease new business volume.  That might not sound like a good thing, but it can be if it keeps customer service optimal during times of decreased staffing levels. 

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