Mortgage application volume was mixed during the week ended November 21. The Mortgage Bankers Association (MBA) reported that its Market Composite Index, a measure of the volume of applications for residential mortgages was down 4.3 percent from the previous week on a seasonally adjusted basis but rose 5.0 percent on an unadjusted basis.  This discrepancy is probably accounted for by an adjustment made in date the previous week to account for the Veterans Day holiday.

The Refinance Index was also down 4.0 percent compared to the week ended November 14 but the share of applications made during the week for refinancing rose from 61 percent to 63 percent.

Refinance Index vs 30 Yr Fixed

The seasonally adjusted Purchase Index lost 5 percent from the previous week's level but the unadjusted was 1 percent higher.  The unadjusted Purchase Index was 10 percent lower than during the same week in 2013.

Purchase Index vs 30 Yr Fixed

The FHA share of total applications decreased to 9.4 percent from 9.9 percent the previous week and the VA share fell to 10.3 percent from 11.5 percent.  The USDA share of total applications remained unchanged at 0.8 percent.

Interest rates gathered through the MBA's Weekly Mortgage Applications Survey were mixed. The average contract interest rate for 30-year fixed-rate mortgages (FRM) with conforming loan balances of $417,000 or less decreased to 4.15 percent from 4.18 percent, Points increased to 0.25 from 0.24 and the effective rate decreased. .

The average contract interest rate for jumbo 30-year FRM with loan balances greater than $417,000 was unchanged at 4.10 percent.  Points increased to 0.25 from 0.16 and the effective rate rose as well. 

Thirty-year FRM backed by FHA had an average contract rate of 3.90 percent compared to 3.85 percent the previous week.  Points decreased to 0.13 from 0.18 and the effective rate decreased.

The average rate for 15-year FRM decreased from 3.38 percent with 0.27 point to 3.35 percent with 0.25 point.  The effective rate was also lower than during the preceding week. 

Adjustable rate mortgages (ARMs) had a marginally larger market share during the prior week, increasing to 7.0 percent from 6.9 percent.  The contract rate for a 5/1 hybrid ARM was down 3 basis points to 3.06 percent while points increased from 0.34 to 0.41.  The effective rate was unchanged. 

MBA's survey covers over 75 percent of all U.S. retail residential mortgage applications, and has been conducted since 1990. Respondents include mortgage bankers, commercial banks and thrifts. Base period and value for all indexes is March 16, 1990=100.  Average and effective interest rate information is based on loans with an 80 percent loan to value ratio and points include the origination fee.