MBA Purchase Applications Index, Jan 1990 - Jan 2010. Calculated Risk

The MBA reports: Mortgage Applications Decrease in Latest MBA Weekly Survey

The Market Composite Index, a measure of mortgage loan application volume, decreased 2.1 percent on a seasonally adjusted basis from one week earlier. …

The Refinance Index decreased 1.2 percent from the previous week and the seasonally adjusted Purchase Index decreased 4.0 percent from one week earlier. …

The average contract interest rate for 30-year fixed-rate mortgages remained unchanged at 4.94 percent, with points increasing to 1.09 from 1.06 (including the origination fee) for 80 percent loan-to-value (LTV) ratio loans.

This graph shows the MBA Purchase Index and four week moving average since 1990.

The 4 week average of the seasonally adjusted purchase index declined to 221.7, just above the 12 year low set in early January.

Refinance activity also declined even with rates below 5%, since most borrowers who are able to refinance already have - and the other half of homeowners with mortgages are unable to refinance for several reasons. (see: Dina ElBoghdady and Renae Merle at the WaPo: Refinancing unavailable for many borrowers ). 

MBA: Mortgage Purchase Applications Decline

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