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MBA: Mortgage Applications Decrease in Latest Weekly Survey

by Calculated Risk on 6/30/2021 07:00:00 AM

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

Mortgage applications decreased 6.9 percent from one week earlier, according to data from the Mortgage Bankers Association’s (MBA) Weekly Mortgage Applications Survey for the week ending June 25, 2021.

… The Refinance Index decreased 8 percent from the previous week and was 15 percent lower than the same week one year ago. The seasonally adjusted Purchase Index decreased 5 percent from one week earlier. The unadjusted Purchase Index decreased 6 percent compared with the previous week and was 17 percent lower than the same week one year ago.

Mortgage application volume fell to the lowest level in almost a year and a half, with declines in both
refinance and purchase applications. Mortgage rates were volatile last week, as investors tried to gauge
upcoming moves by the Federal Reserve amidst several divergent signals, including rising inflation,
mixed job market data, strong consumer spending, and a supply-constrained housing market that has led
to rapid home-price growth,” said Mike Fratantoni, MBA’s Senior Vice President and Chief Economist.
Purchase applications for conventional loans declined last week to the lowest level since last May. The
average loan size for total purchase applications increased, indicating that first-time homebuyers, who
typically get smaller loans, are likely getting squeezed out of the market due to the lack of entry-level
homes for sale.”

The average contract interest rate for 30-year fixed-rate mortgages with conforming loan balances
($548,250 or less) increased to 3.20 percent from 3.18 percent, with points decreasing to 0.39 from 0.48
(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.

With low rates, the index remains elevated.

The second graph shows the MBA mortgage purchase index

Mortgage Purchase Index
According to the MBA, purchase activity is down 17% year-over-year unadjusted.

Note: The year ago comparisons for the unadjusted purchase index are now more difficult since purchase activity picked up in late May 2020.

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

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