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Mortgage applications tick up 1.6% for week as refis grow

Mortgage activity still well below YOY even as rates hold

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Mortgage applications increased 1.6% from one week earlier, according to data from the Mortgage Bankers Association’s Weekly Mortgage Applications Survey for the week ending August 1, 2014.  

The Market Composite Index, a measure of mortgage loan application volume, increased 1.6% on a seasonally adjusted basis from one week earlier.  On an unadjusted basis, the Index increased 1% compared with the previous week. 

The Refinance Index increased 4% from the previous week. 

The seasonally adjusted Purchase Index decreased 1% from one week earlier. The unadjusted Purchase Index decreased 2% compared with the previous week and was 14% lower than the same week one year ago.

“Last week was a volatile week for interest rates, but it also proved to be a positive one as refinance applications increased,” said Quicken Loans Vice President Bill Banfield. “More Americans are realizing that they need to take advantage of the low rates before they start climbing. Even underwater homeowners can still refinance, as millions have yet to take advantage of the HARP program.”

The refinance share of mortgage activity increased to 55% of total applications, the highest level since March 2014, from 53% the previous week. The adjustable-rate mortgage (ARM) share of activity remained unchanged at 8% of total applications.

The average contract interest rate for 30-year fixed-rate mortgages with conforming loan balances ($417,000 or less) increased to 4.35% from 4.33%, with points decreasing to 0.22 from  0.24 (including the origination fee) for 80% loan-to-value ratio loans. The effective rate increased from last week. 

The average contract interest rate for 30-year fixed-rate mortgages with jumbo loan balances (greater than $417,000) increased to 4.26% from 4.22%, with points increasing to 0.35 from 0.23 (including the origination fee) for 80% LTV loans.  The effective rate increased from last week. 

The average contract interest rate for 30-year fixed-rate mortgages backed by the FHA increased to 4.06% from 4.03%, with points increasing to 0.02 from 0.00 (including the origination fee) for 80% LTV loans. The effective rate increased from last week. 

The average contract interest rate for 15-year fixed-rate mortgages increased to 3.51% from 3.47%, with points increasing to 0.28 from 0.25 (including the origination fee) for 80% LTV loans. The effective rate increased from last week.

The average contract interest rate for 5/1 ARMs increased to 3.32% from 3.31%, with points decreasing to 0.35 from 0.40 (including the origination fee) for 80% LTV loans. The effective rate decreased from last week. 

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