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MBA: Mortgage Applications Increase in Latest Weekly Survey

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by Calculated Risk on 2/02/2022 07:00:00 AM

From the MBA: Mortgage Applications Increase in Latest MBA Weekly Survey

Mortgage applications increased 12.0 percent from one week earlier, according to data from the Mortgage Bankers Association’s (MBA) Weekly Mortgage Applications Survey for the week ending January 28, 2022.

… The Refinance Index increased 18 percent from the previous week and was 50 percent lower than the same week one year ago. The seasonally adjusted Purchase Index increased 4 percent from one week earlier. The unadjusted Purchase Index increased 12 percent compared with the previous week and was 7 percent lower than the same week one year ago.

“Most mortgage rates in MBA’s survey continued to rise, with the 30-year fixed rate reaching its highest level since March 2020 at 3.78 percent. Despite the increase in rates, refinance applications were up 18 percent, driven mainly by a 22 percent jump in conventional applications. There has likely been some recent volatility in application counts due to holiday-impacted weeks, as well as from borrowers trying to secure a refinance before rates go even higher,” said Joel Kan, MBA’s Associate Vice President of Economic and Industry Forecasting. “Purchase applications also increased in the final full week of January but remained 7 percent lower than a year ago. The average purchase loan size hit a new survey high once again at $441,100. Stubbornly low inventory levels and swift home-price growth continue to push average loan sizes higher.”

The average contract interest rate for 30-year fixed-rate mortgages with conforming loan balances ($647,200 or less) increased to 3.78 percent from 3.72 percent, with points decreasing to 0.41 from 0.43 (including the origination fee) for 80 percent loan-to-value ratio (LTV) loans.
emphasis added

Click on graph for larger image.

The first graph shows the refinance index since 1990.

With higher mortgage rates, the refinance index has declined sharply over the last several months.
The second graph shows the MBA mortgage purchase index

According to the MBA, purchase activity is down 7% year-over-year unadjusted.

Note: Red is a four-week average (blue is weekly).

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