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Mortgage Apps: Another Decline as Trend Turns Lower

October 26, 2016
Bottom Line: Mortgage activity fell modestly with applications for both refinancing and purchases falling. The average 30-year mortgage rate fell slightly to 3.71%, down 2bps from the prior week but still up nearly 10bps on the month . On a trend basis the 4 week average is now down 13% from its peak in late July. And the 4-week average is below the 13-week average that is now down 4.2% from its peak in late September. The steady uptrend in mortgage applications for both refinancing and purchases that started at the beginning of this year ended late this summer. And that trend has now turned lower.

The MBA Mortgage Applications Index FELL by 4.1% during the week ended October 21 to 492.0, moderately below its 13 week average of 534.2 but 17.9% ABOVE its year ago level.

The Purchase Index FELL by 6.9% to 207.8, modestly below its 13 week average of 219.5 but 8.7% ABOVE its year ago level. The level of purchase activity had stayed quite low after the crisis until 2015 when it started to rise. But that trend has lost momentum since mid-2016.

The Refinance Index FELL by 2.3% to 2,123. Despite this decline, refinancing activity is moderately below its 13 week average of 2,345 but 24.3% ABOVE its year ago level.

Contract Mortgage Rates FELL with the 30-year fixed rate declining by 2 bps to 3.71% and with the 15-year fixed rate declining by 2 bps to 3.01%.