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Mortgage Applications Pull Up from Latest Decline

mortgage-appMortgage applications saw another increase heading into the year's final month, bouncing back after a Thanksgiving-adjusted decline.

Total mortgage application volumes increased 7.3 percent for the week ending December 5, according to survey data from the Mortgage Bankers Association (MBA). The jump, which includes seasonal adjustments, followed a drop of the same amount the week prior.

Refinance applications surged 13 percent over the week, according to MBA, countering a 13 percent decrease recorded at the end of November. The refinance share of mortgage activity climbed back up to 64 percent after dropping to 60 percent.

The only measure to see any real progress in the past two weeks was the gauge of home purchase applications, which was up another 1 percent after the previous week's 3 percent increase. Removing seasonal factors, MBA estimates purchase application volumes are down 4 percent compared to this time last year—one of the smallest annual declines reported this year.

Government activity was mixed for the week. The share of total applications for Federal Housing Administration-insured mortgages fell to 9.0 percent from 9.3 percent in the previous survey, MBA reported. Meanwhile, the share of mortgage applications for loans guaranteed by the Department of Veterans Affairs ticked up to 9.6 percent.

The average interest rate for a conforming 30-year fixed-rate mortgage was 4.11 percent last week, up from 4.08 percent, MBA reported.

About Author: Tory Barringer

Tory Barringer began his journalism career in early 2011, working as a writer for the University of Texas at Arlington's student newspaper before joining the DS News team in 2012. In addition to contributing to DSNews.com, he is also the online editor for DS News' sister publication, MReport, which focuses on mortgage banking news.
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