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MBA: Mortgage applications drop as refinance activity wanes

Refi activity plummets to lowest level since January

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Mortgage applications decreased 4.8% from one week earlier as refinance activity started to pullback, according to new data from the Mortgage Bankers Association’s Weekly Mortgage Applications Survey for the week ending Feb. 26.

The refinance index decreased 7% from the previous week, falling to its lowest level since January 2016.

On the other side, the seasonally adjusted purchase index slightly dropped 1% from one week earlier.

The refinance share of mortgage activity plummeted to its lowest level since January 2016, making up 58.6% of total applications, down from 61% the previous week.

Additionally, the adjustable-rate mortgage share of activity decreased to 5.6% of total applications.

The Federal Housing Administration share of total applications stayed frozen at 12%. The Veteran Affairs’ share of total applications declined to 12.1% from 13% the week prior, while the United State Department of Labor’s share of total applications remained unchanged at 0.7%.  

The average contract interest rate for 30-year fixed-rate mortgages with conforming loan balances ($417,000 or less) marginally decreased to 3.83% from 3.85%.

The average contract interest rate for 30-year fixed-rate mortgages with jumbo loan balances (greater than $417,000) fell to 3.80%, compared to 3.75% last week.

Meanwhile, the average contract interest rate for 30-year fixed-rate mortgages backed by the FHA decreased from 3.72% to 3.67%.  

The average contract interest rate for 15-year fixed-rate mortgages increased to 3.13% from 3.12%, while the average contract interest rate for 5/1 ARMs decreased to 3.02% from 3.07%.  

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