Mortgage interest rate volatility drives drop in app volume

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Rising interest rates contributed to a 2.5% decrease in mortgage application activity, which fell for the fourth straight week, according to the Mortgage Bankers Association.

"Market sentiments about strong domestic growth and higher inflation in the U.S. pushed the 10-year Treasury to the 3% mark last week, the first time since 2014 that yields have hit that level," Joel Kan, the MBA's associate vice president of economic and industry forecasting, said in a press release.

The MBA's Weekly Mortgage Applications Survey for the week ending April 27 found that the refinance index decreased 4% from the previous week.

The refinance share of application activity decreased to 36.5% from 37.2% the previous week. This is the smallest share since September 2008.

The seasonally adjusted purchase index decreased 2% from one week earlier. The unadjusted purchase index decreased 1% compared with the previous week and was 5% higher than the same week one year ago.

Adjustable-rate loan activity increased to 6.7% of total applications, while the share of Federal Housing Administration-guaranteed loans increased to 10.3% from 10.2% the week prior.

The share of applications for Veterans Affairs-guaranteed loans increased to 10.2% from 10.1% and the U.S. Department of Agriculture/Rural Development share remained unchanged at 0.8% from the week prior.

The average contract interest rate for 30-year fixed-rate mortgages with conforming loan balances ($453,100 or less) increased 7 basis points to 4.8%. For 30-year fixed-rate mortgages with jumbo loan balances (greater than $453,100), the average contract rate increased 5 basis points 4.69%.

The average contract interest rate for 30-year fixed-rate mortgages backed by the FHA increased to 4.81% from 4.71%. For 15-year fixed-rate mortgages the average rate increased to 4.21% from 4.13%.

The average contract interest rate for 5/1 ARMs increased 5 basis points to 4.03%.

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Mortgage applications Refinance Purchase Mortgage Bankers Association FHA The VA