Mortgage Applications Slip Again, Interest Rates Also Make Small Moves

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The Mortgage Bankers Association (MBA) released its weekly report on mortgage applications Wednesday morning, noting a decline of 0.1% in the group’s seasonally adjusted composite index for the week ending August 31. The small decline is the second consecutive drop in new applications.

Mortgage loan rates moved only slightly, last week, with the 30-year fixed rate loan ending the week at 4.65%, up two basis points week over week, according to Mortgage News Daily. The yield on 10-year Treasury bonds closed the week at around 2.86%, up by five basis points week over week. The differential between the 10-year yield and the two-year yield (the yield curve) widened to about 23 basis points.

On an unadjusted basis, the MBA’s composite index fell by 2% week over week. The seasonally adjusted purchase index increased by 1% compared with the week ended August 24. The unadjusted purchase index dropped by 2% for the week and was 2% higher year over year.

The MBA’s refinance index fell by 1% week over week and the percentage of all new applications that were seeking refinancing increased from 38.7% to 38.9%.

Adjustable rate mortgage loans accounted for 6.1% of all applications, down from 6.3% in the prior week.

According to the MBA, last week’s average mortgage loan rate for a conforming 30-year fixed-rate mortgage rose from 4.78% to 4.80%. The rate for a jumbo 30-year fixed-rate mortgage ticked down from 4.68% to 4.67%. The average interest rate for a 15-year fixed-rate mortgage also ticked down from 4.24% to 4.23%.

The contract interest rate for a 5/1 adjustable rate mortgage loan increased from 3.95% to 4.09%. Rates on a 30-year FHA-backed fixed-rate loan rose from 4.77% to 4.79%.