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30-year Fixed Rate Increases to Highest Level Since July 2002

March 15, 2006

WASHINGTON, D.C. — The Mortgage Bankers Association (MBA) Weekly Mortgage Applications Survey for the week ending March 10 found that the Market Composite Index — a measure of mortgage loan application volume was 574.4 – a decrease of 0.2 percent on a seasonally adjusted basis from 575.6 one week earlier. On an unadjusted basis, the Index increased 0.2 percent compared with the previous week but was down 20.4 percent compared with the same week one year earlier. 

The seasonally-adjusted Purchase Index increased by 1.0 percent to 403.0 from 399.0 the previous week whereas the Refinance Index decreased by 1.9 percent to 1583.6 from 1614.4 one week earlier. Other seasonally adjusted index activity includes the Conventional Index, which decreased 0.1 percent to 845.2 from 846.1 the previous week, and the Government Index, which decreased 1.4 percent to 122.8 from 124.6 the previous week.

The four week moving average for the seasonally-adjusted Market Index is up 0.1 percent to 575.3 from 574.9. The four week moving average is up 0.5 percent to 401.9 from 400.1 for the Purchase Index while this average is down 0.3 percent to 1593.4 from 1599.0 for the Refinance Index.

The refinance share of mortgage activity decreased to 37.7 percent of total applications from 38.5 percent the previous week. The adjustable-rate mortgage (ARM) share of activity increased to 28.8 percent of total applications from 27.9 percent the previous week. 

The average contract interest rate for 30-year fixed-rate mortgages increased to 6.42 percent from 6.31 percent, with points decreasing to 1.14 from 1.22 (including the origination fee) for 80 percent loan-to-value (LTV) ratio loans. The 30-year fixed rate is at its highest level since July, 5, 2002 when it was 6.46 percent. 

The average contract interest rate for 15-year fixed-rate mortgages increased to 6.06 percent from 5.97 percent, with points decreasing to 1.19 from 1.22 (including the origination fee) for 80 percent LTV loans. 

The average contract interest rate for one-year ARMs decreased to 5.64 percent from 5.69 percent, with points remaining at 0.96 (including the origination fee) for 80 percent LTV loans.

Source: The Mortgage Bankers Association (MBA)

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