Demand Rises As Rates Fall For Fifth Week

According to the Mortgage Bankers Association’s weekly applications survey, average mortgage rates fell for the fifth consecutive week last week. Rates were down for 30-year fixed-rate loans with both conforming and jumbo balances. They also fell for loans backed by the Federal Housing Administration. The downward trend over the past several weeks has led to increasing demand for mortgage applications, with both purchase and refinance demand moving higher last week. Joel Kan, MBA’s vice president and deputy chief economist, says activity is beginning to rise. “Both purchase and refinance applications increased last week and have shown gains in three of the past four weeks because of lower rates,” Kan said. “Purchase activity that was put on hold last year due to the quick runup in rates is gradually coming back as rates ease and housing demand remains strong, driven by supportive demographics and the ongoing strength in the job market.” Overall, demand for mortgage applications rose 7.4 percent week-over-week. The MBA’s weekly survey has been conducted since 1990 and covers 75 percent of all retail residential mortgage applications. (source)

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