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Mortgage applications jumped and rates dropped as Congress argued over federal budget plan

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As Congress battled over whether to raise the debt ceiling last week, economic uncertainty drove mortgage rates down, leading many potential buyers to pounce on low rates.

For those in the lending or building industry, the political drama was a spark plug for market activity, according to the Wall Street Journal. The Mortgage Bankers Association reports mortgage applications were up 7.1 percent last week from the week before, while refinance activity rose 7.8 percent and purchasing jumped 5.1 percent.

According to the MBA, rates on 30-year fixed-rate mortgages averaged 4.45 percent, decreased from 4.57 percent, while the average for 15-year fixed-rate mortgages dropped from 3.67 percent to 3.52 percent.

Of course, relying on Capitol Hill to flirt with economic disaster is no way to run a business, but the MBA report offers a little light on what’s otherwise been a cruel summer.