Wednesday, August 02, 2006

MBA: Market Index Falls to May 2002 Levels

by Bill McBride on 8/02/2006 12:21:00 AM

The Mortgage Bankers Association (MBA) reports: Application Volume Declines

Click on graph for larger image.

The Market Composite Index, a measure of mortgage loan application volume, was 527.6, a decrease of 1.2 percent on a seasonally adjusted basis from 533.8 one week earlier. This is the lowest that the index has been since May 2002. On an unadjusted basis, the Index decreased 1.4 percent compared with the previous week but was down 29.0 percent compared with the same week one year earlier.

The seasonally-adjusted Purchase Index decreased by 3.3 percent to 376.2 from 389.0 the previous week and the Refinance Index increased by 2.3 percent to 1417.2 from 1385.2 one week earlier. The Purchase Index is at its lowest since November 2003. emphasis added
Mortgage rates decreased:
The average contract interest rate for 30-year fixed-rate mortgages decreased to 6.62 percent from 6.69 percent ...

The average contract interest rate for 15-year fixed-rate mortgages decreased to 6.28 percent from 6.31 percent ...
Change in mortgage applications from one year ago (from Dow Jones):

Total-29.0%
Purchase-23.2%
Refi-37.0%
Fixed-Rate-28.2%
ARM-30.7%

Last week I wrote: "This may be the beginning of another decline in purchase activity." With the Purchase Index off another 3.3%, this does appears to be the start of another leg down for the housing market.

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