Mortgage application filings ticked up 1.7% for the week ending May 4 as more consumers filled out purchase applications and the 30-year, fixed-rate mortgage hit a new low, an industry trade group said Wednesday.

The Mortgage Bankers Association released its market composite index, a measure of loan application volume, and found the 1.7% increase occurred as the purchase index edged up 3.4% on a seasonally adjusted basis. That increase in the purchase index is the result of a 5.4% jump in the seasonally adjusted conventional purchase index, the MBA said.  

Meanwhile, the refinance index edged up 1.3% from the previous week as the conventional refinance index rose 1.8% and the government refinance index fell 2.3%.

Refinancing activity made up approximately 72.1% of all mortgage activity for the week, which is mostly flat from 72.6% the week before. Still, it is the lowest refinance share recorded since April 6.

The government share of purchase activity declined from 37% to 35.8%, making it the lowest government purchase share since March 27, 2009. The average interest rate on a 30-year, fixed-rate mortgage with conforming loan balances of $417,500 or less declined from 4.05% to 4.01%, the lowest rate in the history of the MBA survey.  

The average interest rate for the 30-year, FRM with jumbo loan balances declined from 4.32% to 4.29%, while the average interest rate for the 30-year, FRM backed by the FHA increased from 3.80% to 3.81%. The contract rate for the 15-year, FRM declined from 3.31% to 3.29%. 


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