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Wednesday, July 08, 2009

MBA: Mortgage Refinance Activity Up from Recent Lows

by Calculated Risk on 7/08/2009 08:51:00 AM

The MBA reports:

This week’s results include an adjustment to account for the holiday. The Market Composite Index, a measure of mortgage loan application volume, was 493.1, an increase of 10.9 percent on a seasonally adjusted basis from 444.8 one week earlier.
The Refinance Index increased 15.2 percent to 1707.7 from 1482.2 the previous week and the seasonally adjusted Purchase Index increased 6.7 percent to 285.6 from 267.7 one week earlier.
The average contract interest rate for 30-year fixed-rate mortgages remained unchanged at 5.34 percent ...
MBA Purchase Index Click on graph for larger image in new window.

This graph shows the MBA Purchase Index and four week moving average since 2002.

Note: The increase in 2007 was due to the method used to construct the index: a combination of lender failures, and borrowers filing multiple applications pushed up the index in 2007, even though activity was actually declining.

The Purchase index has moved some above the recent lows, but the big story is the Refinance index - the index had declined sharply in recent weeks as mortgage rates increased, but the index was up this week.