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MBA: Mortgage Applications Increased in Weekly Survey


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

Mortgage applications increased 5.3 percent from one
week earlier, according to data from the Mortgage Bankers Association’s (MBA) Weekly Mortgage
Applications Survey for the week ending April 7, 2023.

The Market Composite Index, a measure of mortgage loan application volume, increased 5.3 percent on
a seasonally adjusted basis from one week earlier. On an unadjusted basis, the Index increased 6
percent compared with the previous week. The Refinance Index increased 0.1 percent from the previous
week and was 57 percent lower than the same week one year ago. The seasonally adjusted Purchase
Index increased 8 percent from one week earlier. The unadjusted Purchase Index increased 9 percent
compared with the previous week and was 31 percent lower than the same week one year ago.

“Incoming data last week showed that the job market is beginning to slow, which led to the 30-year fixed
rate decreasing to 6.30 percent – the lowest level in two months,” said Mike Fratantoni, MBA’s SVP and
Chief Economist. “Prospective homebuyers this year have been quite sensitive to any drop in mortgage
rates, and that played out last week with purchase applications increasing by 8 percent. Refinance
application volume was a mixed bag with total volume essentially flat, conventional volume down for the
week, but VA refinance volume increasing. The level of refinance activity remains almost 60 percent
below last year, as most homeowners are currently locked in at much lower rates.”
The average contract interest rate for 30-year fixed-rate mortgages with conforming loan balances
($726,200 or less) decreased to 6.30 percent from 6.40 percent, with points decreasing to 0.55 from 0.59
(including the origination fee) for 80 percent loan-to-value ratio (LTV) loans.

emphasis added
Click on graph for larger image.

The first graph shows the MBA mortgage purchase index.

According to the MBA, purchase activity is down 31% year-over-year unadjusted.  

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

The second graph shows the refinance index since 1990.

With higher mortgage rates, the refinance index declined sharply in 2022.

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