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MBA: Mortgage Applications Increased in Weekly Survey


From the MBA: Mortgage Applications Increase in Latest MBA Weekly Survey

Mortgage applications increased 1.1 percent from one week
earlier, according to data from the Mortgage Bankers Association’s (MBA) Weekly Mortgage Applications
Survey for the week ending July 14, 2023. Last week’s results included an adjustment for Independence

The Market Composite Index, a measure of mortgage loan application volume, increased 1.1 percent on
a seasonally adjusted basis from one week earlier. On an unadjusted basis, the Index increased 27
percent compared with the previous week. The Refinance Index increased 7 percent from the previous
week and was 32 percent lower than the same week one year ago. The seasonally adjusted Purchase
Index decreased 1 percent from one week earlier. The unadjusted Purchase Index increased 24 percent
compared with the previous week and was 21 percent lower than the same week one year ago.

“Mortgage rates declined last week, as markets responded positively to incoming data showing that U.S.
inflation continues to cool. Most rates in our survey declined, with the 30-year fixed rate falling to 6.87
percent,” said Joel Kan, MBA’s Vice President and Deputy Chief Economist. “Refinance applications
increased more than 7 percent, but that activity accounted for only 28 percent of applications and was
more than 30 percent behind last year’s pace. Despite last week’s lower rates, purchase applications
decreased, as home purchase activity is still being held back by low housing supply and rates that are still
much higher than a year ago.”

The average contract interest rate for 30-year fixed-rate mortgages with conforming loan balances
($726,200 or less) decreased to 6.87 percent from 7.07 percent, with points decreasing to 0.66 from 0.74
(including the origination fee) for 80 percent loan-to-value ratio (LTV) loans.

emphasis added
Click on graph for larger image.

The first graph shows the MBA mortgage purchase index.

According to the MBA, purchase activity is down 21% year-over-year unadjusted.  

Red is a four-week average (blue is weekly).  This is close to the lowest level since the mid-’90s!

The second graph shows the refinance index since 1990.

With higher mortgage rates, the refinance index declined sharply in 2022 – and has mostly flat lined at a low level since then.

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