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MBA: Mortgage applications inch higher as refinance demand grows

Refinance share of activity reaches new high

Mortgage applications ticked up 3.1% from one week earlier, as refinance demand increased, according to data from the Mortgage Bankers Association’s Weekly Mortgage Applications Survey for the week ending Nov. 10.

The MBA noted that this week’s results do not include an adjustment for the Veterans’ Day holiday.

Looking only at the refinance market, the Refinance Index increased 6% from the previous week to its highest level since October 2017. The seasonally adjusted Purchase Index increased 0.4% from one week earlier.

The refinance share of mortgage activity increased to its highest level since September 2017, making up 51.3% of total applications. This is up from 49% the previous week.

The adjustable-rate mortgage share of activity decreased to 6.4% of total applications.

For different product types, the Federal Housing Administration’s share of total applications decreased to 10.2% from 10.6% the week prior, while the Veterans Affairs’ share of total applications increased to 10.1% from 10% the week prior.

The Department of Agriculture’s share of total applications remained unchanged from the week prior at 0.7%.

The average contract interest rate for 30-year fixed-rate mortgages with conforming loan balances ($424,100 or less) stayed at 4.18%.

Similarly, the average contract interest rate for 30-year fixed-rate mortgages with jumbo loan balances (greater than $424,100) remained unchanged at 4.12%.

The average contract interest rate for 30-year fixed-rate mortgages backed by the FHA also remained unchanged at 4.05%.

Lastly, the average contract interest rate for 15-year fixed-rate mortgages increased to its highest level since March 2017, 3.54%, from 3.51%, as the average contract interest rate for 5/1 ARMs increased to its highest level since March 2017, 3.41%, from 3.33%. 

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