Mortgage applications continue to fall

Downward trend a sign that rising prices and tight supply are constraining activity, says MBA

Mortgage applications continue to fall

The number of mortgage applications fell for the sixth consecutive week, according to new data from the Mortgage Bankers Association (MBA).

Figures from MBA revealed that the total number of mortgage applications decreased 3.7% for the week ending April 09, on a seasonally adjusted basis, compared to the week prior.

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Refinancing activity also decreased last week, dropping 5% from the previous week, while the seasonally adjusted purchase index decreased 1% week-over-week.

Joel Kan, associate vice president of economic and industry forecasting at MBA, said that the decrease could be attributed to rising rates and a tighter supply of homes.

“Purchase and refinance applications declined, with most of the pullback coming earlier in the week when rates were higher,” said Kan. “Refinance activity has now decreased for nine of the past 10 weeks, as rates have gone from 2.92% to 3.27% over the same period. Last week’s index level was the lowest in over a year, as mortgage rates continue to trend higher. Many borrowers have either already refinanced at lower rates or are unwilling – or unable – to refinance at current rates.”

Additionally, Kan said that declining purchase activity is “a sign that rising home prices and tight supply are constraining home sales – especially in the lower price tiers.”

“Purchase applications were still above last year’s pandemic-impacted low point, but fell behind the level of activity seen the same week in 2019,” concluded Kan.