Mortgage applications plunged 14.9% last week, according to the Mortgage Bankers Association's (MBA) Weekly Mortgage Applications Survey, which accounts for the Columbus Day holiday.
The MBA reports that its seasonally adjusted Purchase Index decreased 8.8% from one week earlier and is at its lowest level since December 1996. Both conventional and government purchase activity declined last week, with the Conventional Purchase Index decreasing 11% and the Government Purchase Index decreasing 5.9% from the previous week. The unadjusted Purchase Index decreased 8.6% compared with the previous week and was 5.1% lower than the same week one year ago.
The MBA's Refinance Index decreased 16.6% from the previous week.
While all the other indices fell year-over-year, the Government Purchase Index increased 3.3% on an unadjusted basis – the second straight increase, the MBA says. The government share of purchase activity has increased three consecutive weeks to 43.5, the highest level since April.