Mortgage Applications Increase for Fourth Straight Week


Mortgage applications increased for the fourth straight week, with an uptick of 0.3% from one week earlier, according to the latest Weekly Mortgage Applications Survey from the Mortgage Bankers Association’s (MBA) for the week ending November 24, 2023. This week’s results include an adjustment for the observance of the Thanksgiving holiday.

This week’s numbers: 

  • The Market Composite Index, a measure of mortgage loan application volume, increased 0.3% on a seasonally adjusted basis from one week earlier. 
  • On an unadjusted basis, the Index decreased 33% compared with the previous week. 
  • The Refinance Index decreased 9% from the previous week and was 1% higher than the same week one year ago. 
  • The seasonally adjusted Purchase Index increased 5% from one week earlier. 
  • The unadjusted Purchase Index decreased 31% compared with the previous week and was 19% lower than the same week one year ago.
  • The refinance share of mortgage activity decreased to 30.6% of total applications from 32.4% the previous week. 
  • The adjustable-rate mortgage (ARM) share of activity decreased to 8.1% of total applications.
  • The FHA share of total applications decreased to 13.5% from 14.8% the week prior. 
  • The VA share of total applications increased to 12.6% from 11.3% the week prior. 
  • The USDA share of total applications increased to 0.5% from 0.4% the week prior.
  • The average contract interest rate for 30-year fixed-rate mortgages with conforming loan balances ($726,200 or less) decreased to 7.37% from 7.41%, with points increasing to 0.64 from 0.62 (including the origination fee) for 80% loan-to-value ratio (LTV) loans. The effective rate decreased from last week.
  • The average contract interest rate for 30-year fixed-rate mortgages with jumbo loan balances (greater than $726,200) increased to 7.54% from 7.51%, with points unchanged at 0.62 (including the origination fee) for 80% LTV loans. The effective rate increased from last week.
  • The average contract interest rate for 30-year fixed-rate mortgages backed by the FHA decreased to 7.18% from 7.19%, with points increasing to 0.81 from 0.79 (including the origination fee) for 80% LTV loans. The effective rate decreased from last week.
  • The average contract interest rate for 15-year fixed-rate mortgages decreased to 6.88% from 6.89%, with points decreasing to 0.52 from 0.76 (including the origination fee) for 80% LTV loans. The effective rate decreased from last week.
  • The average contract interest rate for 5/1 ARMs decreased to 6.59% from 6.76%, with points decreasing to 0.76 from 0.82 (including the origination fee) for 80% LTV loans. The effective rate decreased from last week. 

MBA’s take: 

“Mortgage rates decreased for the fourth time in five weeks, with the 30-year fixed rate dipping to 7.37%, the lowest level in 10 weeks. There was a slight increase in applications overall, driven by a five percent increase in purchase applications, but refinance applications decreased over the week,” said Joel Kan, MBA’s vice president and deputy chief economist. “Rates have declined more than 50 basis points over the past six weeks, which has helped to spur a small increase in purchase applications, but activity last week was still around 20% lower than a year ago. The purchase market remains depressed because of the ongoing, low supply of existing homes on the market. Similarly, refinance activity will likely be muted for some time, even with the recent decline in rates, as many borrowers locked in much lower rates in 2020 and 2021.”





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