MBA: Mortgage Apps Rose for Fifth Straight Week
Mortgage application activity continued to rise last week, led by a resurgence in purchase applications. The Mortage Bankers Association's market composite index -- a measure capturing all application activity -- rose 3.0 percent to 1086.6 for the week ended February 1, 2008, compared to 1054.9 the week prior. That's five straight weeks of increased application volume to start 2008. Purchase activity jumped 12 percent to 405.3, the MBA reported -- the first rise in three weeks. Refinance applications finally cooled off and fell 1 percent to 5054.0. Borrowers looking to refinance likely were affected by increasingly uncertainty over the direction of mortgage rates, as HW reported last week. The application index is calibrated to March 16, 1990; a reading of 1086.9 means that application activity was roughly 10.8 times greater than when the index was first established. With purchases up, the refinance share of applications predictably fell to 69.2 percent, off from a relative high of 73 percent the week previous, the MBA said. For more information, visit http://www.mortgagebankers.org.