Falling interest rates forced the nation's mortgage bankers and brokers to add more workers in February, according to new employment numbers released Friday by the Bureau of Labor Statistics.Mortgage-related firms added 4,200 full-time workers during the month, bringing total industry employment to 436,700. Industry employment had been falling steadily since last July, when mortgage rates hit a 40-year low. Rates have risen steadily -- with a few hiccups -- since last summer, but over the past six weeks they have fallen again. However, the yield on the 10-year Treasury spiked Friday when new BLS figures showed the nation's overall employment rate rising. If the yield on the 10-year stays where it is (around 4.1%) or moves higher, mortgage firms may begin cutting workers once again. The yield on the 10-year recently stood at 3.71%. The BLS can be found online at http://stats.bls.gov.

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