Mortgage Applications Jump 30.2% in Early January

Washington, DC, January 15, 2020-Mortgage applications increased 30.2% from one week earlier, according to data from the Mortgage Bankers Association's (MBA) Weekly Mortgage Applications Survey for the week ending January 10, 2020. Last week's results included an adjustment for the New Year's Day holiday. 

The Market Composite Index, a measure of mortgage loan application volume, increased 30.2% on a seasonally adjusted basis from one week earlier. On an unadjusted basis, the Index increased 67% compared with the previous week. The Refinance Index increased 43% from the previous week and was 109% higher than the same week one year ago. The seasonally adjusted Purchase Index increased 16% from one week earlier. The unadjusted Purchase Index increased 51% compared with the previous week and was 8% higher than the same week one year ago. 

"The mortgage market saw a strong start to 2020. Applications increased across the board, and the 30-year fixed mortgage rate hit its lowest level since September 2019," said Joel Kan, associate vice president of Economic and Industry Forecasting. "Refinances increased for both conventional and government loans, as lower rates provided a larger incentive for borrowers to act. It remains to be seen if this strong refinancing pace is sustainable, but even with the robust activity the last two weeks, the level is still below what occurred last fall." 

Added Kan, "Homebuyers were active the first week of the year. Purchase activity was 8% higher than a year ago, and the purchase index increased to its highest level since October 2009. Low rates and the solid job market continue to encourage prospective buyers to enter the market."