Refinancing Continues to Drive Application Volume

by devteam February 1st, 2012 | Share

ThernMortgage Bankers Association’s (MBA) Weekly Mortgage Applications Surveyrnreported that mortgage applications as measured by its Market Composite Indexrnwere down 2.9 percent on a seasonally adjusted basis during the week endedrnJanuary 27 but increased 9.0 percent from the previous week on an unadjustedrnbasis.</p

Thernseasonally adjusted Purchase Index was down 1.7 percent while it increased 17.1rnpercent on an unadjusted basis from the week ended January 20 and was 4.3rnpercent lower than during the same week in 2011.  The Refinance Index decreased 3.6 percentrnfrom the previous week.</p

Allrnof the four week moving averages were higher for the week.  The seasonally adjusted Market Index rosern4.11 percent, the seasonally adjusted Purchase Index was up 2.48 percent andrnthe Refinance Index increased 4.22 percent. </p

Applications forrnrefinancing represented 80.0 percent of all applications, down from 81.3rnpercent the previous week.  Applicationsrnfor adjustable-rate mortgages (ARMs) had a 5.6 percent market share compared torn5.3 percent a week earlier. </p

Refinancingrnapplications in December increased in every U.S. state according to MBA and,rndespite multiple holidays only 12 states had fewer purchase applications thanrnin November.  In Connecticut refinancingrnapplications increased 80.1 percent from November and Maine saw a 30.8 percentrnincrease in applications for home purchase mortgages. </p

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

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


Refinance Index vs 30 Yr Fixed</p

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


Rates fell for allrnfixed rate mortgages (FRM) compared to the previous week.  The average contract interest rate forrn30-year conforming FRM (balances under $417,500) decreased to 4.09 percent withrn0.41 point from 4.11 with 0.47 point. Rates for jumbo mortgages (those withrnbalances over $417,500) decreased from 4.39 percent to 4.33 percent whilernpoints increased from 0.40 to 0.41.  Thisrnis the lowest rate for the 30-year jumbo mortgages since MBA started trackingrnthem one year ago.  </p

FHA backed 30-yearrnFRM rates decreased one basis point to 3.96 percent with points increasing torn0.61 from 0.57.  Rates for the 15-yearrnFRM were down from 3.40 percent with 0.40 point to 3.36 percent with 0.41rnpoint.  The effective rate of all of thernmortgage products listed above also decreased.</p

The sole rate increase was for the 5/1 ARM which increased on average to 2.94 percent with 0.39 pointrnfrom 2.91 percent with 0.41 point.  Therneffective rate also increased. </p

Follow what drives changes in mortgage rate each day with Mortgage Rate Watch from MND.</p

All rates quotedrnare for 80 percent loan to value loans and points include the origination fee.</p

MichaelrnFratantoni, MBA’s Vice President of Research and Economics said of the week’srnresults, “The Federal Reserve surprised the market last week by indicatingrnthat short-term rates were likely to stay at their current low-levels until thernend of 2014.  Longer-term treasury rates dropped in response, and mortgagernrates for the week were down slightly as a result.  Although total application volume dropped onrnan adjusted basis relative to last week, refinance volume remains high, withrnsurvey participants reporting that the expanded Home Affordable RefinancernProgram (HARP) contributed to roughly 10 percent of their refinancernactivity.”</p

MBA’s weeklyrnsurvey covers over 75 percent of all U.S. retail residential mortgagernapplications, and has been conducted since 1990.  Respondents includernmortgage bankers, commercial banks and thrifts.  Base period and value forrnall indexes is March 16, 1990=100.

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About the Author


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

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