Mortgage application volume fell 4.0% on an adjusted basis during the week ended Dec. 9, according to the Mortgage Bankers Association’s (MBA) Weekly Mortgage Applications Survey.
It was the seventh consecutive week that total application volume fell on a week-over-week basis.
Applications have been falling precipitously ever since rates started to increase immediately following the presidential election. As is to be expected, most of the drop-off has been in applications for refinances.
Applications for refinances this past week fell 4.0% compared with the previous week, while applications for purchases decreased 3.0%.
On an unadjusted basis, total volume decreased 5.0% compared with the previous week. Applications for purchases decreased 7.0% but increased 2.0% compared with the same week one year earlier.
Despite the recent drop in applications for refinances, the refinance share of mortgage activity this past week increased to 57.2% of total applications – up from 56.2% the previous week.
Fixed mortgage rates (FRMs) continued their upward march, with the average rate for a 30-year FRM increasing to 4.28% from 4.27%.
The average rate for a 30-year jumbo FRM was 4.29%, up from 4.22% to reach the highest level since September 2014.
The average rate for a 30-year FRM backed by the Federal Housing Administration (FHA) was 4.02%, up from 4.00%.
The average rate for a 15-year FRM was 3.52%, down slightly from 3.53%.
The average rate for a 5/1 adjustable-rate mortgage (ARM) was 3.28%, down from 3.39%.
The ARM share of activity increased to 6.2% of total applications.
Meanwhile, all eyes are on the Federal Reserve today to see if the Federal Open Market Committee votes to increase the Fed Funds rate by another 0.25%.