Mortgage Application Activity Tapers in August


The last weeks in August finished with subdued mortgage activity, per the Mortgage Bankers Association’s latest Weekly Application Survey. However, demand remains strong: Overall mortgage activity was 35% higher than what it was the same week one year ago.

For the week ending August 28, 2020, the Market Composite Index decreased 2% from one week prior on a seasonally adjusted basis, with the Purchase and Refinance indexes decreasing from the prior week by 0.2% and 3%, respectively. On an unadjusted basis, the year-over-year gains in the Purchasing and Refinance indexes were 28% and 40%, respectively.

In the latest week, the MBA’s tracked 30-year fixed-rate mortgage rate hovered two basis points above 3.06%, the historic low reached at the beginning of August. The MBA states that refinancing activity is unlikely to stir again unless rates begin to fall further downward. Interestingly, while the level of adjustable-rate mortgage activity significantly dropped in August, decreasing by 25% from the end of July on a seasonally adjusted basis, its share of total mortgage activity remained unchanged from the previous week at 2.6%, which is consistent with tapering of overall mortgage activity in August.

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