MBA: Mortgage Applications Decrease in Latest Weekly Survey

From the MBA: Mortgage Applications Decrease in Latest MBA Weekly Survey

Mortgage applications decreased 5.1 percent from one week earlier, according to data from the Mortgage Bankers Association’s (MBA) Weekly Mortgage Applications Survey for the week ending July 31, 2020.

… The Refinance Index decreased 7 percent from the previous week and was 84 percent higher than the same week one year ago. The seasonally adjusted Purchase Index decreased 2 percent from one week earlier. The unadjusted Purchase Index decreased 2 percent compared with the previous week and was 22 percent higher than the same week one year ago.

“Mortgage rates dropped to another record low last week, falling below the previous record set three weeks ago to 3.14 percent. Refinance activity decreased – despite the decline in rates – but the current pace remains more than 80 percent higher than a year ago when rates were over 4 percent. MBA’s forecast calls for rates to remain at these low levels, which will continue to spur strong refinance activity and offer homeowners relief in the form of lower monthly mortgage payments during these uncertain economic times,” said Joel Kan, MBA’s Associate Vice President of Economic and Industry Forecasting. “Purchase applications also fell slightly, but were still 20 percent higher than a year ago and have now risen year-over-year for 11 straight weeks. Purchase loan balances continued to climb, which is perhaps a sign that the still-weak job market and tighter credit for government loans are constraining some first time homebuyers.”

The average contract interest rate for 30-year fixed-rate mortgages with conforming loan balances ($510,400 or less) remained unchanged at 3.20 percent, with points increasing to 0.37 from 0.35 (including the origination fee) for 80 percent loan-to-value ratio (LTV) loans.
emphasis added

Mortgage Refinance IndexClick on graph for larger image.

The first graph shows the refinance index since 1990.

The refinance index has been very volatile recently depending on rates and liquidity.

But with record low rates, the index is up significantly from last year.

Mortgage Purchase Index The second graph shows the MBA mortgage purchase index

According to the MBA, purchase activity is up 22% year-over-year.

Note: Red is a four-week average (blue is weekly).

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