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Economy in Brief

U.S. Mortgage Loan Applications Increase While Interest Rates Slip
by Tom Moeller  July 8, 2015

The Mortgage Bankers Association reported that its total Mortgage Market Volume Index increased 4.6% last week (22.4% y/y). Purchase applications improved 6.6% (31.6% y/y). Applications to refinance gained 2.7% (13.7% y/y).

The effective interest rate on a 15-year mortgage eased to 3.49%. The effective rate on a 30-year fixed rate loan was stable at 4.34%. The rate on a Jumbo 30-year loan eased to 4.27%. For adjustable 5-year mortgages, the effective interest rate declined to 3.16%.

The average mortgage loan size eased to $261,000 (+5.5% y/y). For purchases, it fell to $287,400 (+4.2% y/y) and for refinancings it slipped to $232,300 (+5.2% y/y).

Applications for fixed interest rate loans increased 23.5% y/y, while adjustable rate loan applications gained 8.6% y/y.

The survey covers over 75 percent of all U.S. retail residential mortgage applications, and has been conducted weekly since 1990. Respondents include mortgage bankers, commercial banks and thrifts. The base period and value for all indexes is March 16, 1990=100. The figures for weekly mortgage applications and interest rates are available in Haver's SURVEYW database.

MBA Mortgage Applications (SA, 3/16/90=100) 07/03/15 06/26/15 06/19/15 Y/Y % 2014 2013 2012
Total Market Index 383.5 366.5 384.5 22.4 361.5 616.6 813.8
 Purchase 212.4 199.2 207.8 31.6 172.1 197.5 187.8
 Refinancing 1,342.9 1,307.7 1,379.9 13.7 1,449.8 3,070.0 4,505.0
15-Year Mortgage Effective Interest Rate (%) 3.49 3.52 3.47 3.50
(7/14)
3.54 3.42 3.25
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