Mortgage Application Volume at Lowest Levels Since 1996


The Mortgage Bankers Association (MBA) said the volume of mortgage applications dipped slightly during the week ended September 8. MBA said its Market Composite Index, a measure of that volume, decreased 0.8 percent on a seasonally adjusted basis from one week earlier. On an unadjusted basis, the Index dropped 12 percent during the week, which was shortened by the Labor Day holiday. The Refinance Index declined 5 percent week-over-week and was 31 percent lower than the same week in 2022. The refinance share of mortgage activity was 29.1 percent compared to 30.0 percent the previous week. [refiappschart] The seasonally adjusted Purchase Index rose 1 percent but fell 11 percent before adjustment. Activity was 27 percent lower than the same week one year ago. [purchaseappschart] “Mortgage applications decreased for the seventh time in eight weeks, reaching the lowest level since 1996 ” according to d Joel Kan, MBA’s Vice President and Deputy Chief Economist. “Last week’s decline driven by a 5 percent drop in refinance applications to the weakest reading since January 2023. The 30-year fixed mortgage rate increased to 7.27 percent last week and was 40 basis points higher than where it was in late July. Purchase applications increased over the week despite the increase in rates, pushed higher by a 2 percent gain in conventional loans. Given how high rates are right now, there continues to be minimal refinance activity and a reduced incentive for homeowners to sell and buy a new home at a higher rate .”

Sandstone Group