by Calculated Risk on 3/01/2023 07:00:00 AM
From the MBA: Mortgage Applications Decrease in Latest MBA Weekly Survey
week earlier, according to data from the Mortgage Bankers Association’s (MBA) Weekly Mortgage
Applications Survey for the week ending February 24, 2023.
The Market Composite Index, a measure of mortgage loan application volume, decreased 5.7 percent on
a seasonally adjusted basis from one week earlier. On an unadjusted basis, the Index decreased 4
percent compared with the previous week. The Refinance Index decreased 6 percent from the previous
week and was 74 percent lower than the same week one year ago. The seasonally adjusted Purchase
Index decreased 6 percent from one week earlier. The unadjusted Purchase Index decreased 3 percent
compared with the previous week and was 44 percent lower than the same week one year ago.
“The 30-year fixed rate increased to 6.71 percent last week, the highest rate since November 2022, which
drove a 6 percent drop in applications. After a brief revival in application activity in January when
mortgage rates dropped down to 6.2 percent, there has now been three straight weeks of declines in
applications as mortgage rates have jumped 50 basis points over the past month,” said Joel Kan, MBA’s
Vice President and Deputy Chief Economist. “Data on inflation, employment, and economic activity have
signaled that inflation may not be cooling as quickly as anticipated, which continues to put upward
pressure on rates.”
Added Kan, “Both purchase and refinance applications declined last week, with purchase index at a 28-
year low for a second consecutive week. Purchase applications were 44 percent lower than a year ago,
as homebuyers again retreat to the sidelines as higher rates crimp affordability. Refinance applications
account for less than a third of all applications and remained more than 70 percent behind last year’s
pace, as a majority of homeowners are already locked into lower rates.”
Click on graph for larger image.
The first graph shows the refinance index since 1990.