Mortgage Volume Flattens as Rates Rise


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The volume of mortgage
applications received during the week ended April 20 was largely unchanged from
the previous week
.  The Mortgage Bankers
Association’s (MBA) said its Market Composite Index, a measure of that volume, ticked
down 0.2 percent on a seasonally adjusted basis from one week earlier although
it was 1 percent higher before adjustment. 
The seasonally adjusted Purchase Index was unchanged.  The unadjusted Purchase Index increased 1
percent compared with the previous week and was 11 percent higher than the same
week in 2017.  


Refi Index vs 30yr Fixed



Purchase Index vs 30yr Fixed



The refinance portion
of mortgage activity continued to retreat to new post-recession lows,
accounting for 37.2 percent of the total received compared to 37.6 percent the
previous week.  It was the smallest share
for refinancing since September 2008. The Refinance Index itself was down 0.3
percent compared to the week ended April 13.

for FHA-backed mortgages accounted for 10.2 percent of those received, down
from 10.6 percent and the VA share dipped to 10.1 percent from 10.4 percent. USDA
applications remained at 0.8 percent of the total.

Both contract and
effective interest rates rose across the board during the week, with some
hitting new multi-year highs. The average contract interest rate for 30-year
fixed-rate mortgages (FRM) with conforming loan balances of $453,100 or less
increased to the highest level since September 2013, 4.73 percent, up from 4.66
percent.  Points increased to 0.49 from 0.46. 

Thirty-year FRM
with loan balances exceeding the conforming limit
had an average contract rate of
4.64 percent with 0.39 point.  It was the
highest level for the jumbo loan since January 2014.  The rate had averaged 4.53 percent with 0.38
point the previous week.  

The average rate
for 30-year FRM backed by the FHA increased 1 basis point to 4.71 percent. Points
jumped from 0.53 to 0.79. 

15-year FRM hit a seven year high at 4.13 percent, rising from 4.08 percent the
previous week.   Points increased to 0.52 from 0.47.  

The average
contract interest rate for 5/1 adjustable rate mortgages (ARMs) was 3.98
percent, up from 3.94 percent and its highest level since February 2011. Points
averaged 0.44, up from 0.43.  The
adjustable-rate mortgage (ARM) share of activity decreased to 6.5 percent of
total applications from 6.6 percent.

MBA’s Weekly
Mortgage Applications Survey has been conducted since 1990 and covers over 75 percent
of all U.S. retail residential mortgage applications.  Respondents include mortgage bankers,
commercial banks and thrifts.  Base
period and value for all indexes is March 16, 1990=100 and interest rate
information is based on loans with an 80 percent loan-to-value ratio and points
that include the origination fee.


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