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Mortgage Applications Jump Highest Since 2009: MBA

Mortgage applications jumped by 18 percent from the week earlier, riding a refinance wave to numbers not seen since 2009, according to the ""Mortgage Bankers Association"":http://www.mbaa.org/default.htm (MBA).

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The trade group found that the Refinance Index climbed up by over 19 percent from the week before, reaching the highest level for an index since April 2009. The refinance share of mortgage activity soared to 79 percent of total volume.

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""Michael Fratantoni"":Michael Fratantoni, VP of research and economics with the group, said in a statement that ""[r]efinance volume increased as borrowers were able to lock in at mortgage rates below 4 percent, and purchase application volume was its highest level in over six months.""

He added that loans refinanced through the Home Affordable Refinance Program steadied in recent weeks at roughly 28 percent of refinance applications.

The average refinance loan size climbed to $226,576, up from $219,664 in April. The largest purchase loans stood at $357,978 in the Pacific region.

The Purchase Index meanwhile increased by 13 percent from the week before and by 23 percent on an unadjusted basis. The average loan size for a home purchase stateside rose from $238,135 to $226,576.

The adjustable-rate mortgage (ARM) share of activity hovered at around 5 percent of application volume from the week before.

With the exception of 30-year fixed-rate mortgages with jumbo balances, which fell to 4.12 percent from 4.13 percent, mortgage rates largely went up over last week, the MBA said.

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