The appeals court, too, found that the two women had committed fraud. But it also accepted Zhu's argument that she was entitled to her share of the gains from the scheme. The court ordered Lei to pay Zhu the amount they had fraudulently extracted from the bank - despite acknowledging in its ruling that the pair had engaged in "illegal behavior." Lei's lawyer said she complied with the ruling. The Bank of China did not respond to questions from Reuters about the case or allegations of widespread mortgage fraud in China.
Mortgage buyer Freddie Mac says the average rate on 30-year fixed-rate mortgages rose to 3.99 percent, up from 3.94 percent last week. That average marks a five-month high, but it's still lower than the 4.32 percent a year ago. The rate on 15-year fixed-rate mortgages increased to an average 3.44 percent from 3.38 percent in the prior week. The 15-year averaged 3.55 percent a year ago.