— Mortgage applications increased 0.3 percent from one
week earlier, according to data from the Mortgage Bankers Association’s (MBA) Weekly Mortgage
Applications Survey for the week ending November 24, 2023. This week’s results include an adjustment
for the observance of the Thanksgiving holiday.
The Market Composite Index, a measure of mortgage loan application volume, increased 0.3 percent on
a seasonally adjusted basis from one week earlier. On an unadjusted basis, the Index decreased 33
percent compared with the previous week. The Refinance Index decreased 9 percent from the previous
week and was 1 percent higher than the same week one year ago. The seasonally adjusted Purchase
Index increased 5 percent from one week earlier. The unadjusted Purchase Index decreased 31 percent
compared with the previous week and was 19 percent lower than the same week one year ago.
“Mortgage rates decreased for the fourth time in five weeks, with the 30-year fixed rate dipping to 7.37
percent, the lowest level in 10 weeks. There was a slight increase in applications overall, driven by a five
percent increase in purchase applications, but refinance applications decreased over the week,” said Joel
Kan, MBA’s Vice President and Deputy Chief Economist. “Rates have declined more than 50 basis points
over the past six weeks, which has helped to spur a small increase in purchase applications, but activity
last week was still around 20 percent lower than a year ago. The purchase market remains depressed
because of the ongoing, low supply of existing homes on the market. Similarly, refinance activity will likely
be muted for some time, even with the recent decline in rates, as many borrowers locked in much lower
rates in 2020 and 2021.”
The average contract interest rate for 30-year fixed-rate mortgages with conforming loan balances
($726,200 or less) decreased to 7.37 percent from 7.41 percent, with points increasing to 0.64 from 0.62
(including the origination fee) for 80 percent loan-to-value ratio (LTV) loans.
The first graph shows the MBA mortgage purchase index.
According to the MBA, purchase activity is down 19% year-over-year unadjusted.