The National Association of Realtors said Wednesday that its pending home sales index climbed 5.5 percent in February to 112.3, its highest point since April and its second-highest point since 2006.

Mortgage buyer Freddie Mac said Thursday the rate on 30-year fixed-rate home loans declined to 4.14 percent from 4.23 percent last week. The benchmark rate stood at 3.71 percent a year ago and averaged 3.65 percent in 2016, the lowest level in records dating to 1971.

Alma Gaul