WASHINGTON >> Long-term U.S. mortgage rates fell this week, benefiting potential homebuyers with the spring buying season underway.
Mortgage buyer Freddie Mac said Thursday the average rate on 30-year, fixed-rate mortgages dipped to 4.40 percent from 4.44 percent last week. The benchmark stood at an average 4.10 percent a year ago.
The decline followed scant movement in long-term rates last week and a months-long stretch of increases in January, February and early March as interest rates generally rose.
The average rate on 15-year, fixed-rate loans declined to 3.87 percent from 3.90 percent last week.
As trade tensions have escalated in recent weeks between the U.S. and China, investors have been switching into safer assets like bonds. That has pushed bond prices higher and suppressed their yields, which move in the opposite direction.
Delta, Sears report breaches of data
Delta now says that payment card information for about “several hundred thousand” airline customers may have been exposed by malware last fall that also hit Sears and other companies.
The airline says that the malware attack may have exposed customers’ names, addresses, credit card numbers, card security codes and expiration dates.
Delta Air Lines Inc. offered the additional details about the attack Thursday, a day after saying that only a “small subset” of customers was affected.
Sears Holdings Corp., which also operates Kmart stores, said it thinks the malware led to “unauthorized access to less than 100,000 of our customers’ credit card information.”
Target settles hiring discrimination lawsuit
NEW YORK >> Target has agreed to settle a lawsuit that said its hiring process, which automatically rejected people with criminal backgrounds, disproportionately kept blacks and Hispanics from getting entry-level jobs at its stores.
As part of the settlement, Target will pay more than $3.7 million and hire outside experts to review how it deals with applicants who have criminal backgrounds. According to the lawsuit, blacks and Hispanics were harmed by the hiring system because they are arrested and incarcerated at higher rates than whites. More than 41,000 black and Hispanic applicants were denied jobs based on their criminal history between 2008 and 2016, according to the court documents.
ON THE MOVE
>> American Civil Liberties Union of Hawaii has announced that Jeffrey Hong, a board member, has been elected to serve on the ACLU’s 16-member national executive committee. Hong is the first Hawaii board member to serve on the national committee. Besides working with the ACLU, Hong is chief technology officer for Techmana, a software development company based in Hawaii. He also founded Hawaii’s Microsoft office and served as a major and military intelligence officer in the Hawaii Army National Guard.
>> The Consuelo Foundation has announced that Greg Auberry is its new president and chief executive officer, beginning Monday. Auberry will oversee management of the foundation’s administration operations and programs in Hawaii as well as the Philippines. For 27 years Auberry has held numerous management-level positions at Catholic Relief Services. He also managed CRS startup projects and welfare programs that prevent human trafficking; supported youth and women with tuberculosis and HIV; assisted women and children in education and rural areas; and handled relief and major disaster management efforts in various Asian countries.