US mortgage applications declined for a 4th week running even as some home borrowing costs fell to their lowest levels in more than 11 months, the Mortgage Bankers Association said Wednesday.
The Washington-based industry group’s seasonally-adjusted index on borrower requests to lenders for a loan to buy a home and to refinance one decreased 3.7% to 364.8% in the week ended 8 February, the weakest reading in a month.
Application activity fell last week – even with rates decreasing.The 30-year fixed-rate mortgage dropped to its lowest level since last March, and was 52 basis points lower than its recent high last November. Government refinances provided a bright spark, picking up over 10%, as both FHA and VA refinancing activity saw increases over the week.
The refinance share of mortgage activity increased to 43.2% of total applications from 41.6% the prior week. The adjustable-rate mortgage (ARM) share of activity decreased to 7.5% of total applications.
The average contract interest rate for 30-year fixed-rate mortgages with conforming loan balances ($484,350 or less) decreased to 4.65% from 4.69%, with points decreasing to 0.43 from 0.45 for 80% loan-to-value ratio (LTV) loans. The effective rate decreased from last week.
The average contract interest rate for 15-year fixed-rate mortgages decreased to 4.04% from 4.11%, with points increasing to 0.48 from 0.47 for 80% LTV loans. The effective rate decreased from last week.