Mortgage Loan Rates Moderate, Lending Up

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The Mortgage Bankers Association (MBA) released its weekly report on mortgage applications this morning, noting a rise of 1.3% in the group’s seasonally adjusted composite index following a decline of 2.5% for the previous week. Mortgage loan rates decreased across the board last week.

The seasonally adjusted purchase index decreased by 0.4% from the last report. On an unadjusted basis, the composite index rose 0.3% week-over-week. The unadjusted purchase index decreased by 3% for the week, but is up about 6% year-over-year.

The MBA’s refinance index rose 2% after dropping 5% in the previous week.

The share of refinancings rose from 60% to 61%. Adjustable rate mortgage loans account for 7% of all applications.

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The average mortgage loan rate for a conforming 30-year fixed-rate mortgage decreased from 4.8% to 4.73%. The rate for a jumbo 30-year fixed-rate mortgage fell from 4.78% to 4.71%. The average interest rate for a 15-year fixed-rate mortgage fell from 3.84% to 3.75%.

The contract interest rate for a 5/1 adjustable rate mortgage loan rose from 3.5% to 3.49%.

Mortgage interest rates remain near two-year highs and the decline in refinancings has been halted, at least for one week.

Purchase applications remain higher than they were a year ago and that is the best news out of the reports for the past few weeks. The modest increase in refinancings does not signal anything in particular.

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