MortgageMortgage Rates

Drop in mortgage rates won’t boost lender demand

Current refinance demand isn't sustainable

Despite a drop in mortgage rates and an increase in applications, John Carney with the Wall Street Journal argued that this looks more like a false dawn than a bright morning for mortgage lenders.

When looking at the most recent Freddie Mac Primary Mortgage Market Survey, the 30-year, fixed-rate mortgage averaged 3.98% for the week ended Oct. 30.

Meanwhile, the Mortgage Bankers Association, noted that the refinance share of mortgage activity remained unchanged at 65% of total applications.

The rise in applications was, though, driven by a double-digit increase in refinancing. That isn’t sustainable: After the most recent refinancing wave, there are fewer higher-rate mortgages to refinance.

And although Federal Housing Finance Agency Director Met Watt and U.S. Secretary of Housing and Urban Development Julian Castro recently announced their plans to expand the credit box, Carney said that in the short term it seems unlikely to lift demand.

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