Refinancings Rise as Mortgage Loan Rates Track Lower

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The Mortgage Bankers Association (MBA) released its weekly report on mortgage applications this morning, noting an increase of 1.8% in the group’s seasonally adjusted composite index following a rise of 0.2% for the previous week.

The seasonally adjusted purchase index decreased by 1.4% from the last report. On an unadjusted basis, the composite index rose by 2% week-over-week. The unadjusted purchase index decreased by 0.5% for the week and is up 13% year-over-year.

The share of refinancings remained unchanged from the previous week at 75%. Adjustable rate mortgage loans now account for 4% of all applications, also unchanged from last week.

The average mortgage loan rate for a conforming 30-year fixed-rate mortgage fell from 3.65% to 3.60%. The rate for a jumbo 30-year fixed-rate mortgage increased from 3.75% to 3.80%. The average interest rate for a 15-year fixed-rate mortgage dropped from 2.91% to 2.89%.

The contract interest rate for a 5/1 adjustable rate mortgage loan fell from 2.89% to 2.84%.

Refinancings rose rather sharply in the past week, up 3% compared with a rise of just 0.3% in the prior week. The conforming 30-year fixed rate mortgage is at its lowest point since December.

Later this morning we’ll get a report from the U.S. Census Bureau on construction spending in March. The consensus estimate is for spending to have risen by 0.6% over the February spending.