Mortgage applications hit a slowdown

Despite lower interest rates, demand for home loans falls 3%, trade group reports.

NEW YORK ( -- U.S. mortgage applications fell last week, despite a drop in interest rates, an industry trade group's data showed Wednesday.

The Mortgage Bankers Association said its seasonally adjusted index of requests for home loans for the week ended Oct. 27 fell 3 percent to 570.8, from 588.6 one week earlier.

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Borrowing costs on 30-year fixed-rate mortgages, excluding fees, decreased to 6.24 percent from 6.36 percent from the previous week.

The MBA's seasonally adjusted purchase mortgage index decreased by 1.8 percent to 375.6 from 382.4 one week earlier. The purchase index is considered a timely gauge of U.S. home sales.

The group's seasonally adjusted index of refinancing applications decreased by 4.5 percent to 1709.2 from 1790.4 the previous week

Fixed 15-year mortgage rates decreased to 5.94 percent from 6.03 percent the previous week. Rates on one-year adjustable-rate mortgages (ARMs) decreased to 5.93 percent from 5.97 percent.

The ARM share of activity decreased to 25.9 percent of total applications from 26.1 percent the previous week.

The MBA's survey covers about 50 percent of all U.S. retail residential mortgage loans. Respondents include mortgage bankers, commercial banks and thrifts.

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