Welcome to the dead of winter.
Despite the fact that mortgage interest rates dipped slightly for a third consecutive week, mortgage application volume nevertheless decreased 0.2% for the week ending Jan. 24, compared to the week prior, according to the Mortgage Bankers Association's (MBA) Weekly Mortgage Applications Survey.
The MBA notes that the results include an adjustment to account for the Martin Luther King, Jr., holiday. On an unadjusted basis, volume was down 9% compared with the previous week.
Refinances also decreased, dropping 2% compared to the previous week, on an adjusted basis, which is somewhat surprising considering the recent (but only slight) drop in rates. On an unadjusted basis, refinances decreased 3%, compared with the previous week, and were 12% lower than the same week one year ago.
The refinance share of mortgage activity decreased to 62% of total applications, down from 64% the previous week, to reach its lowest level since late September, according to the report.
The average rate for a 30-year fixed-rate mortgage (FRM) with conforming loan balances ($417,000 or less) decreased to 4.52%, down from 4.57% the week prior.
The average rate for a 30-year FRM with jumbo loan balances (greater than $417,000) decreased to 4.47%, down from 4.57% the previous week.
The average rate for a 30-year FRM backed by the Federal Housing Administration decreased to 4.18% from 4.24%.
The average rate for a 15-year FRM decreased to 3.59% from 3.68%.
The average rate for a 5/1 adjustable-rate mortgage (ARM) increased to 3.25% from 3.23%. The ARM share of activity remained unchanged at 7% of total applications.