Mortgage Applications Decrease This Week


Following a rise in mortgage rates last week, mortgage applications decreased 1.6% from after last week’s 7.1% increase, according to the latest Weekly Mortgage Applications Survey from the Mortgage Bankers Association’s (MBA) for the week ending March 15, 2024. 

Here’s a look at this week’s numbers: 

  • The Market Composite Index, a measure of mortgage loan application volume, decreased 1.6% on a seasonally adjusted basis from one week earlier. 
  • On an unadjusted basis, the Index decreased 1% compared with the previous week. 
  • The Refinance Index decreased 3% from the previous week and was 3% lower than the same week one year ago. 
  • The seasonally adjusted Purchase Index decreased 1% from one week earlier. 
  • The unadjusted Purchase Index decreased 1% compared with the previous week and was 14% lower than the same week one year ago.
  • The refinance share of mortgage activity decreased to 31.2% of total applications from 31.6% the previous week. 
  • The adjustable-rate mortgage (ARM) share of activity decreased to 7.2% of total applications.
  • The FHA share of total applications increased to 12.1% from 12.0% the week prior. The VA share of total applications decreased to 12.1% from 12.2% the week prior. 
  • The USDA share of total applications remained unchanged from 0.5% the week prior.
  • The average contract interest rate for 30-year fixed-rate mortgages with conforming loan balances ($766,550 or less) increased to 6.97% from 6.84%, with points decreasing to 0.64 from 0.65 (including the origination fee) for 80% loan-to-value ratio (LTV) loans. The effective rate increased from last week.
  • The average contract interest rate for 30-year fixed-rate mortgages with jumbo loan balances (greater than $766,550) increased to 7.14% from 7.04%, with points increasing to 0.54 from 0.38 (including the origination fee) for 80% LTV loans. The effective rate increased from last week.  
  • The average contract interest rate for 30-year fixed-rate mortgages backed by the FHA increased to 6.89% from 6.77%, with points increasing to 1.04 from 0.95 (including the origination fee) for 80% LTV loans. The effective rate increased from last week.
  • The average contract interest rate for 15-year fixed-rate mortgages increased to 6.49% from 6.37%, with points decreasing to 0.70 from 0.77 (including the origination fee) for 80% LTV loans. The effective rate increased from last week.
  • The average contract interest rate for 5/1 ARMs decreased to 6.33% from 6.38%, with points increasing to 0.55 from 0.52 (including the origination fee) for 80% LTV loans. The effective rate decreased from last week. 

MBA’s comments:

“Mortgage rates increased last week as incoming data showed inflation was still hotter than expected, which stoked concerns about the timing and extent to which the Fed might be able to reduce the fed funds rates this year. After three weeks of declines, the 30-year fixed mortgage rate increased to 6.97%,” said Joel Kan, MBA’s vice president and deputy chief economist. “Mortgage applications continued to show sensitivity to rate movements, and both purchase and refinance activity decreased over the week. With housing supply low and prices high, the average loan size for purchase applications increased to the highest level since May 2022.”





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