Mortgage Loan Rates Make Small Moves, Applications Rise

The Mortgage Bankers Association (MBA) released its weekly report on mortgage applications Wednesday morning, noting an increase of 3.6% in the group’s seasonally adjusted composite index for the week ending October 13. During the week, mortgage loan rates rose on two of five loan types that the MBA tracks.

On an unadjusted basis, the composite index decreased by 7% week over week. The seasonally adjusted purchase index increased by 4% compared with the week ended October 6. The unadjusted purchase index decreased by 6% for the week and is now 9% higher year over year.

The MBA’s refinance index increased by 3% week over week, and the percentage of all new applications that were seeking refinancing dipped from 49% to 48.6%.

Adjustable rate mortgage loans accounted for 6.1% of all applications, down 0.5 percentage points from the prior week.

While mortgage rate movements varied last week, the overall trend was essentially “more of the same.” Rates moved to recent lows last Friday but have been creeping back up to a range of 3.875% to 4.00% on a 30-year fixed-rate loan. Upfront costs are responsible for most of the changes in quoted rates.

According to the MBA, last week’s average mortgage loan rate for a conforming 30-year fixed-rate mortgage slipped from 4.16% to 4.14%. The rate for a jumbo 30-year fixed-rate mortgage rose from 4.11% to 4.13%. The average interest rate for a 15-year fixed-rate mortgage ticked up from 3.44% to 3.45%.

The contract interest rate for a 5/1 adjustable rate mortgage loan decreased from 3.33% to 3.31%. Rates on a 30-year FHA-backed fixed-rate loan remained unchanged 4.00%.