Mortgage Applications Up Again
March 13, 2019
The latest Mortgage Bankers Association (MBA) Weekly Mortgage Applications Survey reported the Market Composite Index increased by 2.3 percent on a seasonally adjusted in the week ending March 8 from one week earlier. On an unadjusted basis, the Index was up by three percent compared with the previous week.
The seasonally adjusted Purchase Index rose by four percent week-over-week and the unadjusted index was up six percent for the same period—and the latter was also two percent higher than the same week one year ago. The Refinance Index decreased by a slight 0.2 percent from the previous week as the refinance share of mortgage activity decreased to 38.6 percent of total applications from 40.0 percent the previous week.
Among the federal programs, the FHA share of total applications increased to 10.4 percent from 10.3 percent the week prior, while the VA share of total applications decreased to 10.2 percent from 10.4 and the USDA share of total applications remained unchanged at 0.6 percent.
“Led by a 5.5 percent increase in FHA loan applications, purchase activity picked up last week and was almost two percent higher than a year ago,” said Joel Kan, Associate Vice President of Economic and Industry Forecasting. “Purchase applications have now increased year-over-year for four weeks, which signals healthy demand entering the busy spring buying season. However, the pick-up in the average loan size continues, with the average balance reaching another record high. With more inventory in their price range compared to first-time buyers, move-up and higher-end buyers continue to have strong success finding a home.”
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