Mortgage Applications Decline Quickly After Burst from Sandy

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The Mortgage Bankers Association (MBA) released its weekly report on mortgage applications this morning, noting a decline of 2.2% in the group’s seasonally adjusted composite index compared with last week’s increase of 12.5%. Unadjusted, the composite index fell by 13%.

Applications for refinancing fell by 3% (seasonally adjusted), while seasonally adjusted purchase applications increased by 3% from the previous week. Unadjusted, the purchase index declined by 11% compared with the previous week and fell 6% compared with the same week a year ago.

The refinancing rate remained steady at 81% of total applications. About 96% of the applications were seeking fixed-rate loans, consistent with last week’s reading.

The average contract interest rate for a conforming 30-year fixed-rate mortgage increased from 3.52% to 3.54%. The rate for a jumbo 30-year fixed-rate mortgage also fell, from 3.83% to 3.76%. The average interest rate for a 15-year fixed-rate mortgage rose from 2.88% to 2.89%.

The contract interest rate for a 5/1 adjustable rate mortgage increased from 2.60% to 2.62%.

The burst of mortgage applications we saw a week ago disappeared as quickly as it arrived. The 12.5% jump was due almost entirely to the effects of Hurricane Sandy.

Paul Ausick

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