The week ended November 14 was a lackluster one for mortgage activity.  Mortgage applications during the week, as measured by the Mortgage Bankers Association's (MBA's) Market Composite Index increased 4.9 percent on a seasonally adjusted basis but on an unadjusted basis applications were down 7 percent.  The higher number included an adjustment to account for the Veterans' Day holiday which occurred mid-week.

Applications for refinancing fell from 63 percent of all mortgage applications to a 61 percent share.  The Refinance Index increased 1 percent from the week ended November 7.

Refinance Index vs 30 Yr Fixed

The seasonally adjusted Purchased index was significantly higher than the previous week, up 12 percent to the highest level since last July.  On an unadjusted basis however the index fell 3 percent and was 6 percent below its level during the same week in 2013. 

Purchase Index vs 30 Yr Fixed

The share of FHA mortgages increased from 9.6 percent to 9.9 percent of all mortgage applications and the VA portion rose 5 basis points to 11.5 percent.  Rural Housing Service loans (USDA) accounted for 0.8 percent of application, down from 0.9 percent.

Average contract interest rates for most mortgage types mortgages eased very slightly during the week as did the majority of effective rates.  

The contract rate for 30-year fixed-rate mortgages (FRM) with conforming loan balances ($417,000 or less) decreased to 4.18 percent from 4.19 percent and point were down from 0.26 to 0.24. The rate for 30-year fixed-rate mortgages with jumbo loan balances (greater than $417,000) decreased to 4.10 percent from 4.13 percent, with points increasing to 0.16 from 0.1.  

Thirty-year FRM backed by the FHA had an average interest rate of 3.85 percent, down 5 basis points from the previous week.  Points increased to 0.18 from 0.14.

The average contract interest rate for 15-year fixed-rate mortgages remained unchanged from 3.38 percent, with points increasing to 0.27 from 0.22.  The effective rate increased.  

Adjustable rate mortgage (ARMs) overall had only a 6.9 percent share of applications, down from 7.1 percent and the lowest share this year.  The average contract interest rate for 5/1 ARMs increased to 3.09 percent with 0.34 point from 3.05 percent, with 0.32 point.  The effective rate increased from the prior week.

MBA derives its data from its Weekly Mortgage Applications Survey which is has conducted since 1990.  The survey covers over 75 percent of all U.S. retail residential mortgage applications, and respondents include mortgage bankers, commercial banks and thrifts. Base period and value for all indexes is March 16, 1990=100.  Mortgage rate information assumes a loan with an 80 percent loan to value ratio and points include the origination fee.