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Mortgage Application Activity Down 2.3%

WRE News February 16, 2024


Mortgage Application Activity Down 2.3%

Fewer people were filling out mortgage applications last week, according to new data from the Mortgage Bankers Association (MBA).

The Market Composite Index, the MBA’s measure of mortgage loan application volume, dropped by 2.3% week-over-week on a seasonally adjusted basis. On an unadjusted basis, the index increased 2% compared with the previous week.

The seasonally adjusted Purchase Index decreased 3% from one week earlier while the unadjusted index increased 4% compared with the previous week and was 12% lower than the same week one year ago. The Refinance Index decreased 2% from the previous week and was 12% higher than the same week one year ago; the refinance share of mortgage activity decreased to 34.2% of total applications from 35.4% the previous week.

Among the federal programs, the FHA share of total applications increased to 13.4% from 13.1% the week prior while the VA share of total applications decreased to 13.1% from 14.1% and the USDA share of total applications remained unchanged at 0.4%.

“Application activity was weaker last week, as mortgage rates moved higher across the board. The 30-year fixed mortgage rate was up to 6.87% – the highest rate since early December 2023,” said Joel Kan, MBA’s vice president and deputy chief economist. “Purchase applications remained subdued as elevated rates continue to add to affordability challenges along with still-low existing housing inventory. Refinance applications declined and remained depressed, with rates still higher than a year ago.”

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