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Economy in Brief

Mortgage Applications Surged As Rates Remained Low
by Tom Moeller June 15, 2005

Total mortgage applications surged 17.4% last week following a 6.5% rise the week prior. Applications so far in June are 12.6% ahead of the May average which rose 6.5% versus April, according to the Mortgage Bankers Association.

Applications to refinance rose by one quarter w/w and are 23.8% higher so far in June than in May which rose 11.2% from April.

Purchase applications rose 10.4% w/w and this month are 4.0% ahead of May which rose 3.1% from April. During the last ten years there has been a 50% correlation between the y/y change in purchase applications and the change in new plus existing single family home sales.

The effective interest rate on a conventional 30-year mortgage ticked up to 5.87% from 5.78% the week prior but remained down from the 5.92% averaged during May. The effective rate on a 15-year mortgage rose 10 basis points to 5.51%.

The Mortgage Bankers Association surveys between 20 to 35 of the top lenders in the U.S. housing industry to derive its refinance, purchase and market indexes. The weekly survey accounts for more than 40% of all applications processed each week by mortgage lenders. Visit the Mortgage Bankers Association site here.

MBA Mortgage Applications (3/16/90=100) 06/10/05 06/03/05 Y/Y 2004 2003 2002
Total Market Index 887.0 755.5 47.7% 735.1 1,067.9 799.7
  Purchase 529.3 479.3 17.8% 454.5 395.1 354.7
  Refinancing 2,967.4 2,362.1 100.6% 2,366.8 4,981.8 3,388.0
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