Mortgage Applications Decline Entering Home Buying Season

March 30, 2011 (Chris Moore)
Mortgage-season-image
The Mortgage Bankers Association (MBA) today released its Weekly Mortgage Applications Survey for the week ending March 25, 2011. The Market Composite Index, a measure of mortgage loan application volume, decreased 7.5 percent on a seasonally adjusted basis from last week.

On an unadjusted basis, the Index decreased 7.2 percent compared with the previous week. The four week moving average for the seasonally adjusted Market Index is up 2.0 percent.

The seasonally adjusted Purchase Index decreased 1.7 percent from one week earlier. The four week moving average is up 2.1 percent for the seasonally adjusted Purchase Index. The unadjusted Purchase Index decreased 1.5 percent compared with the previous week and was 21.9 percent lower than the same week one year ago.

The Refinance Index decreased 10.1 percent from the previous week. The four week moving average is up 2.0 percent.

“Treasury and mortgage rates increased towards the end of last week, as global markets calmed following the recent crises in Japan and the Middle East. Refinance volume predictably fell in response to these rate increases. As rates climb back to 5 percent, fewer homeowners have both the incentive and the ability to refinance,” said Michael Fratantoni, MBA’s Vice President of Research and Economics. “Purchase volume remained roughly flat as we enter what is typically the peak homebuying season.”

The refinance share of mortgage activity decreased to 66.3 percent of total applications from 66.4 last week.

The adjustable-rate mortgage (ARM) share of activity decreased to 5.7 percent from 5.9 percent of total applications from the previous week.

The average contract interest rate for 30-year fixed-rate mortgages increased to 4.92 percent from 4.80 percent last week, with points decreasing to 0.83 from 0.96 (including the origination fee) for 80 percent loan-to-value (LTV) ratio loans. The effective rate increased from last week.

The average contract interest rate for 15-year fixed-rate mortgages increased to 4.16 from 4.02 percent last week, with points increasing to 0.99 from 0.90 (including the origination fee) for 80 percent LTV loans. The effective rate increased from last week.

Tags: MBA, home purchase applications, mortgage rates, fixed rate mortgage, adjustable rate mortgage, refinance, interest rate

Sources:
Mortgage Bankers Association
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