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US mortgage applications fall 5.3 percent

Property Here - Thursday, November 08, 2012

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US mortgage applications fell 5.3 percent last week compared to the week before, according to the Mortgage Bankers Association’s (MBA) weekly survey. 

At the same time, MBA’s refinance index slipped 5.3 percent while the purchasing index dropped 4.8 percent on a seasonally adjusted basis from a week earlier. 

Historically-low interest rates have attracted new home buyers and encouraged many homeowners to refinance their existing loans. However, tighter credit restrictions continue to deter many borrowers from filing mortgage applications.  

Of the overall mortgage applications, 80 percent comprised refinancing, while adjustable-rate loans (ARMs) represented 3.7 percent of total activity. 

Moreover, the average rate for 30-year fixed loans with conforming balances fell to 3.61 percent from 3.65 percent the previous week. Rates on similar mortgages with jumbo balances declined from 3.94 percent to 3.88 percent; while 30-year fixed mortgages backed by the Federal Housing Administration (FHA) inched downwards to 3.37 percent from 3.41 percent a week earlier.

The average rate of 15-year fixed loans was also unchanged at 2.95 percent, while the rate for 5/1 ARM fell to 2.61 percent from 2.66 percent the week before. MBA’s weekly survey covers over 75 percent of all retail residential mortgage applications in the US.