Mortgage rates held steady Thursday as third quarter Productivity increased 9.5%, far above the consensus forecast. The data confirmed that businesses are getting more work out of existing employees, easing labor unit costs. Weekly Jobless Claims fell to 512,000, below expectations, and to the lowest level since January 3. The Senate passed a bill extending the $8,000 first-time homebuyer tax credit, making it applicable to contracts entered into by April 30, 2010, and closed by June 30, 2010. The bill includes a new $6,500 tax credit to homebuyers who have owned their current homes for at least 5 years, subject to income limits. The bill now moves to the House, where quick passage is expected. The Nonfarm Payrolls report for October will be released tomorrow at 8:30 AM.