The last four weeks’ mortgage purchasing and refinancing activities, as reflected in the Mortgage Bankers Association’s (MBA) latest weekly application surveys, shows a general withdrawal of refinancing and a very slight increase in purchasing from the prior month. The 30-year fixed-rate mortgage rate hovered 3 basis points above 3 percent, consistently, for the last three weeks. In the latest week, total mortgage applications, as proxied by the MBA’s Market Composite Index, increased by 0.3% from the prior week.
As shown above, the Purchasing and Refinancing indexes, on an unadjusted basis, posted consistent year-over-year declines (unadjusted) thru the beginning of September. The most recent week’s year-over-year decline for Purchasing of 11.6 percent was the smallest it had been for the last 14 weeks. For Refinancing, it was much smaller at 3.2 percent.
Despite the low rates, refinancing’s share of total mortgage activity decreased to 64.9 percent of total applications in the latest week from 66.8 percent the previous week. The adjustable-rate mortgage (ARM) share of activity increased to 3.3 percent of total applications.