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Mortgage Apps: Refis Tumble, Purchases Edge Higher

November 17, 2021
Bottom Line:  As mortgage rates continued to hover around 3 3/8%, applications for refis continued to decline last week, while purchase volumes inched higher. The Veteran's Day holiday last week had only a minimal activity on the actual vs. reported tally of applications. On a trend basis, there are encouraging signs for a modest rebound in purchase applications.  After slowly falling throughout the summer, buyers who may have been watching appear to have jumped in as mortgage rates rose and more headlines suggested potential higher rates to come. Refinancing activity, meanwhile, has continued to trend lower with most borrowers with the ability to refi having done so in 2020.
The MBA Mortgage Application Index FELL -2.8% at 640.0, BELOW the 13-week average of 687.0 and -23.0% BELOW the year-ago level. Non-seasonally adjusted the index FELL slightly more, DOWN -4.1%.
The Purchase Index ROSE 1.5% at 282.0, ABOVE the 13-week average of 273.0 but -7.0% BELOW the year-ago level.
The Refinancing Index FELL -5.1% at 2695.0, BELOW the 13-week average of 3073.0 and -30.9% BELOW the year-ago level.
The effective (adjusted for points paid) 30-year mortgage rate ROSE 7bps to 3.33%, ABOVE the 13-week average of 3.23%, and 24bp ABOVE the year-ago level.
Current coupon yields in the secondary market were up 16.0 bps last week, closing at 2.05%, and were up 3.0 bps this week through Monday.