Refi activity share contracts amid app volume decrease

by Francis Monfort29 Sep 2017
The share of refinances out of total mortgage applications decreased during the week ending Sept. 22 following consecutive gains, according to the Weekly Mortgage Applications Survey released by the Mortgage Bankers Association.

The Market Composite Index, which measures mortgage loan application volume, fell 0.5% from the previous period on a seasonally adjusted basis. The index slipped 1% on an unadjusted basis.

The refinance index fell 4% from the prior period. The purchase index rose 3% on a seasonally adjusted basis and increased 2% on an unadjusted basis. The unadjusted increase is also 4% higher compared to the year-ago period.

Refinances accounted for 50.8% of total mortgage activity during the week, down from its 52.1% share in the previous period. The share of adjustable-rate mortgages (ARM) fell to 6.5%.

The share of FHA loan applications out of total activity slipped to 9.6% from 9.9%, while VA applications made up 10% of the total, down from 10.1% in the prior period. The USDA share of total applications was 0.7%, unchanged from the previous week.

Average contract interest rates for various mortgage types recorded increases during the period.

The 30-year fixed-rate mortgage with conforming loan balances had an average rate of 4.11%, up from 4.04%. Points, including the origination fee, were unchanged at 0.40 for 80% loan-to-value ratio (LTV) loans. Those with jumbo loan balances posted an average rate of 4.06%, an increase from 3.99%, with points for 80% LTV loans rising to 0.26 from 0.23. Those backed by the FHA had an average rate of 3.98%, up from 3.97%. Points rose to 0.50 from 0.34 for 80% LTV loans.

The 15-year fixed-rate mortgage saw its average rate increase to 3.38% from 3.35%, with points decreasing to 0.40 from 0.44 for 80% LTV loans. The 5/1 ARM had an average rate of 3.38%, up from 3.30%, as points for 80% LTV loans climbed to 0.45 from 0.34.

Related stories:
Mortgage apps slide, but refi share keeps growing
Refis continue gains in application activity share