Nov. 23 (UPI) — U.S. mortgage applications are up 2.2% from a week earlier, but still lower than last year, according to a report Wednesday.
The Mortgage Banker’s Association Market Composite Index showed the increase on a seasonally adjusted basis, but they are still lower than 2021 levels.
“The 30-year fixed-rate mortgage fell for the second week in a row to 6.67% and is now down almost 50 basis points from the recent peak of 7.16% one month ago,” said Joel Kan, MBA’s vice president and deputy chief economist in a statement. “The decrease in mortgage rates should improve the purchasing power of prospective homebuyers, who have been largely sidelined as mortgage rates have more than doubled in the past year.”
Kan said mortgage applications for both purchase and refinance picked up slightly last week. But mortgage refinance applications are more than 80% below last year’s rate, according to Kan. Purchase applications are down 41% compared to a year ago.
“It’s not that things aren’t moving. They just aren’t moving like normal,” said
Mortgage News Daily CEO Matthew Graham said the market is experiencing movement but things “just aren’t moving like normal.”
“Expect things to get back closer to normal next week, but for the market to continue to wait until December 13 and 14 for the biggest moves.”
Those dates are when the next government inflation report is expected and when the federal reserve is expected to announce
its next actions on interest rates in the battle against inflation.
Mortgage demand dropped to a 22-year low in July as the impacts of inflation-fighting moves were felt in the housing market.
According to the Mortgage Banker’s Association, the refinance share of mortgage applications rose to 28.4% from 27.6% the previous week.