In the first quarter, 43% of the homeowners who refinanced their homes got a mortgage at least 5% larger than the original loan, nearly unchanged from a revised 44% in the previous quarter, according to Freddie Mac.The percentage was slightly higher than the 41% level recorded a year earlier, the government-sponsored enterprise said in its quarterly refinance review. "With mortgage rates above the 46-year low of last June, the refinance volume is less than last summer's," said Frank Nothaft, Freddie Mac's chief economist. "The share of cash-out refis tends to rise when overall refinancing activity slows down because fewer borrowers find it economical to refinance their mortgages simply for a lower rate, but the cash-out alternative may be a very affordable option." Freddie Mac can be found online at http://www.freddiemac.com.

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