RATES TICK UP: Average rates on U.S. fixed mortgages ticked up this week but are still low by historical standards, a trend that has aided the housing market recovery.
THE NUMBERS: Mortgage buyer Freddie Mac says the average on the 30-year loan rose to 4.39 percent from 4.31 percent last week. The average on the 15-year fixed loan increased to 3.43 percent from 3.39 percent last week.
FED BOND BUYS: Mortgage rates spiked in June after the Federal Reserve indicated it could slow its bond purchases later this year. The purchases have kept long-term interest rates low. But on Wednesday the Fed hinted it might hold off because the economy remains sluggish.