Mortgage Rates Drop To 19-Month Low

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According to the Mortgage Bankers Association’s Weekly Applications Survey, average mortgage rates fell to their lowest level since May 2013 last week. Rates dropped across all loan categories, including 30-year fixed-rate loans with conforming and jumbo balances, mortgages backed by the Federal Housing Administration, and 15-year fixed-rate loans. Mike Fratantoni, MBA’s chief economist, said interest rates dropped sharply due to plummeting oil prices and heightened concerns regarding global economic growth. Despite the large drop in mortgage rates, however, demand for mortgage applications fell 3.3 percent from the previous week. The Refinance Index showed no change from one week earlier, though as a share of total mortgage demand refinance activity increased to 66 percent. The seasonally adjusted Purchase Index, on the other hand, slipped 7 percent. The unadjusted Purchase Index is now just 5 percent lower than the same week one year ago. The MBA’s weekly survey has been conducted since 1990 and covers 75 percent of all retail residential mortgage applications. More here.

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