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Mortgage Apps Nosedive in Latest Survey

The ""Mortgage Bankers Association"":http://www.mortgagebankers.org (MBA) has released its ""Weekly Mortgage Applications Survey"":http://www.mortgagebankers.org/NewsandMedia/PressCenter/68743.htm for the week ending April 24, 2009, which showed that despite high affordability conditions within the marketplace, the number of people applying for a home loan dropped significantly last week. After several weeks of steady increases, MBA reported declines in every mortgage group studied except for government-backed loans, which rose less than one percentage point.
According to MBA's study, which covers approximately 50 percent of all U.S. retail residential mortgage applications, the total volume of home loan applications was down a staggering 18.1 percent from the week before, on a seasonally adjusted basis. On an unadjusted basis, total volume decreased 17.4 percent compared with the previous week, but was up 62.7 percent compared with the same week last year.
The Refinance Index, which had shouldered the majority of application gains for a number of weeks, dropped 21.9 percent from the previous week. The four-week moving average for the Refinance Index is down 5.7 percent. MBA said that the refinance share of mortgage activity has dipped to 75.3 percent of total applications, down from 79.7 percent the week before.
Based on MBA's market data, the Purchase Index decreased 0.6 percent from one week earlier, and the Conventional Purchase Index is down 1.4 percent. The Government Purchase Index, however (which is made up primarily of Federal Housing Administration loans) increased 0.8 percent.
MBA also reported the average contract interest rates for the mortgage applications submitted last week. The average rate for a 30-year fixed-rate mortgage (FRM) decreased to 4.62 percent, down from 4.73 percent.
The average contract rate for 15-year fixed-rate mortgages slipped slightly to 4.45 percent. The week before it was 4.46 percent.
The average contract interest rate for one-year adjustable-rate mortgages (ARMs) increased to 6.23 percent, up from 6.19 percent. MBA said the ARM share of mortgage activity last week increased to 2.1 percent of total applications, up from 1.4 percent the previous week.

About Author: Carrie Bay

Carrie Bay is a freelance writer for DS News and its sister publication MReport. She served as online editor for DSNews.com from 2008 through 2011. Prior to joining DS News and the Five Star organization, she managed public relations, marketing, and media relations initiatives for several B2B companies in the financial services, technology, and telecommunications industries. She also wrote for retail and nonprofit organizations upon graduating from Texas A&M University with degrees in journalism and English.

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