The WPJ

Mortgage Application Volumes Dip in U.S.

Residential News » Residential Real Estate Edition | By David Barley | December 1, 2011 10:22 AM ET



According to the Mortgage Bankers Association's Weekly Mortgage Applications Survey for the week ending November 25, mortgage applications decreased 11.7 percent from one week earlier. This week's results include an adjustment to account for the Thanksgiving holiday.

The Market Composite Index, a measure of mortgage loan application volume, decreased 11.7 percent on a seasonally adjusted basis from one week earlier. On an unadjusted basis, the Index decreased 39.0 percent compared with the previous week. The Refinance Index decreased 15.3 percent from the previous week. The seasonally adjusted Purchase Index decreased 0.8 percent from one week earlier. The unadjusted Purchase Index decreased 33.7 percent compared with the previous week and was 18.2 percent lower than the same week one year ago.

The four week moving average for the seasonally adjusted Market Index is down 3.29 percent. The four week moving average is up 2.37percent for the seasonally adjusted Purchase Index, while this average is down 4.92 percent for the Refinance Index.

The refinance share of mortgage activity decreased to 73.9 percent of total applications from 75.9 percent the previous week. The refinance share of mortgage activity is at the lowest level since July 2011. The adjustable-rate mortgage (ARM) share of activity increased to 5.8percent from 5.7 percent of total applications from the previous week.

During the month of October, the investor share of applications for home purchase was at 6.1 percent, a slight increase from 6.0 percent in September. This change was led by an increase in the New England region. In addition, the share of purchase mortgages for second homes decreased to 5.6 percent in October from 5.8 percent in September.

The average contract interest rate for 30-year fixed-rate mortgages with conforming loan balances ($417,500 or less) decreased to 4.21 percent from 4.23 percent, with points increasing to 0.49 from  0.46 (including the origination fee) for 80 percent loan-to-value (LTV) ratio loans. The effective rate also decreased from last week.

The average contract interest rate for 30-year fixed-rate mortgages with jumbo loan balances (greater than $417,500) decreased to 4.55 percent from 4.59 percent, with points increasing to 0.45 from 0.40 (including the origination fee) for 80 percent loan-to-value (LTV) ratio loans. The effective rate also decreased from last week.

The average contract interest rate for 30-year fixed-rate mortgages backed by the FHA  decreased to 4.00 percent, the lowest rate since January 2011, from 4.05 percent, with points increasing to 0.62 from 0.55 (including the origination fee) for 80 percent loan-to-value (LTV) ratio loans. The effective rate also decreased from last week.

The average contract interest rate for 15-year fixed-rate mortgages remained unchanged at 3.58 percent, with points decreasing to 0.45 from 0.53 (including the origination fee) for 80 percent LTV loans. The effective rate also decreased from last week.

The average contract interest rate for 5/1 ARMs decreased to 2.98 percent from 3.00 percent, with points decreasing to 0.47 from 0.49(including the origination fee) for 80 percent loan-to-value (LTV) ratio loans. The effective rate also decreased from last week.



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