Fed Action Spurs Refinancing Activity

by devteam September 29th, 2011 | Share

Lowerrninterest rates following the Federal Reserve’s announcement fueled a surge in mortgage applications laternlast week.  According to the MortgagernBankers Association (MBA), its Market Composite Index which measures the volumernof those applications increased 9.3 percent on a seasonally adjusted basisrnduring the week ended September 23.  On arnnon-adjusted basis volume was up 9.2 percent.</p

ThernRefinance Index rose 11.2 percent while the seasonally adjusted Purchase Index</bwas up 2.6 percent.  The unadjustedrnPurchase Index increased 2.2 percent from the week ended September 16 and wasrn0.1 percent higher than during the same period in 2010.</p

Purchase Index vs 30 Yr Fixed</b</p

ChartManager.loadChart(‘purchaseappschart’, ‘PurchaseMtgAppChart’);


Refinance Index vs 30 Yr Fixed</p

ChartManager.loadChart(‘refiappschart’, ‘RefiMtgAppChart’);


Fourrnweek moving averages rose for the seasonally adjusted Market Index which was uprn1.96 percent and the Purchase Index, up 2.60 percent; the seasonally adjustedrnPurchase Index decreased 0.18 percent. </p

“Mortgagernrates declined last week, at least partially in response to the Fed’srnannouncement that they would shift their portfolio towards longer-term Treasuryrnsecurities, and that they would resume buying mortgage-backed securities,”rnsaid Mike Fratantoni, MBA’s Vice President of Research and Economics.rn”With lower rates, refinance application volume increased to its highestrnlevel since August 19, 2011. Purchase application volume also increased.rnHowever, the increase was in conventional purchase applications, which were uprnby 4.9 percent. Purchase applications for government loans fell by 0.6 percentrnover the week, likely influenced by the pending decline in FHA loanrnlimits.”</p

Refinancing as arnshare of all mortgage activity rose to 79.7 percent, an increase of 14 basisrnpoints from the previous week and the highest share of activity since thernsurvey recalibrated its benchmarks in January. rnAdjustable rate mortgage (ARM) activity fell 6.7 percent.</p

Figures for ofrnAugust show that the average size of a loan used to purchase a home during thernmonth was $212,700, up from $211,200 in July. rnLoans for refinancing averaged $241,300, up from $209,200 the previousrnmonth.  The largest loans were made inrnthe Pacific region where the size of the average purchase mortgage was $304,800rnand the average loan for refinancing was $344,500.</p

Rates for arnconforming 30 year fixed-rate mortgage (FRM) decreased by 4 basis points torn4.25 percent during the week and points, including the origination fee, wererndown from 0.41 to 0.35 point.  Thernaverage contract interest rate for a jumbo 30-year FRM (a loan with an amountrnexceeding $417,500) decreased from 4.55 percent with 0.46 point to 4.51 percentrnwith 0.38 point.  FHA backed 30-yearrnloans decreased to 4.05 percent with 0.39 point from 4.07 percent with 0.51rnpoint.  The effective rate for all three 30-yearrnproducts also decreased.</p

The rate forrnconforming 15-year fixed-rate mortgages rose a single basis point to 3.47 percentrnwith points unchanged at 0.45.  Therneffective rate also increased from the previous week.  The rate for a 5/1 ARM decreased from 2.96rnpercent with 0.49 point to 2.95 percent with 0.48 point and the effective raterndeclined as well.  Interest rates quotedrnare, in all cases for loans with an 80 percent loan to value ratio.</p

MBA’s applicationrnsurvey is conducted among mortgage bankers, commercial banks and thrifts and coversrnover 75 percent of all U.S. retail residential mortgage applications. </p

All Content Copyright © 2003 – 2009 Brown House Media, Inc. All Rights Reserved.nReproduction in any form without permission of is prohibited.

About the Author


Steven A Feinberg (@CPAsteve) of Appletree Business Services LLC, is a PASBA member accountant located in Londonderry, New Hampshire.

See all blogs


Leave a Comment

Leave a Reply

Latest Articles

Real Estate Investors Skip Paying Loans While Raising Billions

By John Gittelsohn August 24, 2020, 4:00 AM PDT Some of the largest real estate investors are walking away from Read More...

Late-Stage Delinquencies are Surging

Aug 21 2020, 11:59AM Like the report from Black Knight earlier today, the second quarter National Delinquency Survey from the Read More...

Published by the Federal Reserve Bank of San Francisco

It was recently published by the Federal Reserve Bank of San Francisco, which is about as official as you can Read More...