CFAH

Mortgage loan application volumes in the U.S. dropped another 5 percent over the past week on a seasonally adjusted basis and 4 percent in the absolute, with an 8 percent drop in applications to refinance and a 3 percent drop in purchase activity, according to data from the Mortgage Bankers Association.

On a year-over-year basis, applications to refinance were down 68 percent and purchase applications were down 14 percent last week with the benchmark 30-year mortgage rate having hit 5 percent for the first time in over a decade.

And while the share of purchase applications for shorter-term adjustable rate mortgage products (ARMs) is on the rise, the rise in rates is causing “a pullback or delay in home purchase demand,” per the MBA’s Associate Vice President of Economic and Industry Forecasting, and “purchase activity has yet to see the typical [seasonal] pick up for this time of the year,” despite posturing that a spike in mortgage rates would actually spur an increase in purchase activity as buyers rushed to “lock in at lower rates,” none of which should catch any plugged-in readers by surprise.