By dialing telephone numbers that begin with 976, callers have long been able to hear everything from sports highlights to heavy-breathing aural sex. Add another service to the list: a menu of interest rates by phone. A consumer calling the Answer Quest telephone service in Los Angeles or Detroit can get recorded messages on the best local interest rates for mortgages, commercial real estate, car loans and CDs, or on current precious-metal prices--each for $2. For an additional $2, Answer Quest offers selective ''financial hot tips,'' like how to pick a stockbroker.


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