US Mortgage Applications Surge as Rates Fall: MBA

U.S. mortgage applications surged last week to their highest in nearly 2-1/2 years as interest rates plunged, an industry group said Wednesday.


The Mortgage Bankers Association said its seasonally adjusted index of mortgage applications for the week ended Nov. 30 surged 22.5 percent to 791.8, its highest since July 2005.

Borrowing costs on 30-year fixed-rate mortgages, excluding fees, averaged 5.82 percent, down 0.27 percentage point from the previous week and its lowest since the week ended Sept. 16, 2005 when they stood at 5.81 percent.

Last week's interest rates were also below year-ago levels, which then were 5.98 percent.

The MBA's seasonally adjusted purchase index jumped 15.2 percent to 464.3. The index came in above its year-earlier level of 426.6.

Demand for home loan refinancing surged last week.

The group's seasonally adjusted index of refinancing applications skyrocketed 31.9 percent to 2,761.3, its highest since the week ended July 1, 2005, when it reached 2,788.2.

Regarding the mortgage data released on Nov. 28 regarding the holiday-day shortened week ending Nov. 23, the MBA said its was revising its figures due to an error by "one of the larger reporting companies."

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  • Diana Olick serves as CNBC's real estate correspondent as well as the editor of the Realty Check section on CNBC.com.

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