Mortgage Applications Fell on Slightly Higher Rates

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Mortgage application volume fell 3.4% on an adjusted basis during the week ended June 14, as mortgage rates inched up slightly, according to the Mortgage Bankers Association’s (MBA) Weekly Applications Survey.

Applications for refinances decreased 4% while applications for purchases also fell 4%.

On an unadjusted basis, total volume fell 4% compared with the previous week.

But things are still looking better than last year: Although applications for purchases decreased 5% on an unadjusted basis, they were up 4% compared with the same week one year earlier.

“After a six-week streak, mortgage rates for 30-year loans increased slightly, which led to a pullback in overall refinance activity,” says Joel Kan, associate vice president of economic and industry forecasting for the MBA, in a statement. “Borrowers were sensitive to rising rates, but the refinance share of applications was still at its highest level since January 2018, and refinance activity was at its second highest level this year.

“Government refinances actually increased last week, led by a 17 percent in VA refinance applications, while conventional refinance applications decreased seven percent,” Kan adds. “Purchase applications decreased more than three percent … but were still up almost four percent from last year. Strong demand from first-time buyers and low unemployment continue to push this year’s purchase activity above a year ago.”

The refinance share of mortgage activity increased to 50.2% of total applications, up from 49.8% the previous week. 

The adjustable-rate mortgage (ARM) share of activity decreased to 6.1% of total applications.

The average rate for a 30-year fixed-rate mortgage, based on closings, was 4.14%, up from 4.12% the previous week.

The average rate for a 5/1 ARM was 3.45%, up from 3.43%.

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