Wednesday, April 27, 2011

MBA: Mortgage Purchase Application activity decreases

by Bill McBride on 4/27/2011 07:19:00 AM

The MBA reports: Mortgage Applications Decrease in Latest MBA Weekly Survey

The Refinance Index decreased 0.6 percent from the previous week. The seasonally adjusted Purchase Index decreased 13.6 percent to its lowest level since February 25, 2011, driven by a 26.6 percent decrease in government purchase applications.
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"Purchase applications fell last week, driven primarily by a sharp decrease in government purchase applications as new, higher FHA premiums went into effect," said Michael Fratantoni, MBA’s Vice President of Research and Economics. “This decrease reverses a 20 percent increase in government purchase applications over a four week period, which was likely driven by borrowers attempting to beat this deadline.”
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The average contract interest rate for 30-year fixed-rate mortgages decreased to 4.80 percent from 4.83 percent, with points decreasing to 1.01 from 1.06 (including the origination fee) for 80 percent loan-to-value (LTV) ratio loans.
MBA Purchase Index Click on graph for larger image in graph gallery.

This graph shows the MBA Purchase Index and four week moving average since 1990.

With the higher FHA premiums, the purchase index fell last week to the lowest level since February.

The four week average is at about 1997 levels, although - as far as sales - this doesn't include the very high percentage of cash buyers. From the NAR: "All-cash sales were at a record market share of 35 percent in March, up from 33 percent in February; they were 27 percent in March 2010."

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