Application volume fell by 1.2% on a seasonally adjusted basis for the week ended Nov. 18, as purchase apps were up to their highest level since August, but refinancings were down to their lowest point since July, according to the Mortgage Bankers Association.

The data for the previous week (Nov. 11) was adjusted to take into account Veterans Day.

Purchase application volume returned to levels from before the Veterans Day holiday, said Michael Fratantoni, MBA's vice president of research and economics. "However, purchase activity remains almost 5% below last year's level. Overall, refinance activity dropped for the week, but there was an increase in refinance applications for government loan programs."

The seasonally adjusted Purchase Index increased 8.2% from last week to its highest level since Aug. 12.

The Refinance Index fell by 4% from the previous week, as the market share of refi applications fell to 75.9% from 77.3% one week prior.  However, refi applications for government loan products made up 13% of all refi apps, the highest level for this category since April. MBA tracks activity through its proprietary application index.

The average contract interest rate for 30-year fixed-rate mortgages with conforming loan balances ($417,500 or less) was unchanged at 4.23%, while for 30-year FRMs with jumbo loan balances, the average contract rate increased three basis points to 4.59%.

The average contract interest rate for 30-year Federal Housing Administration-insured loans increased two basis points to 4.05%, while the average contract interest rate for 15-year FRMs increased by four basis points at 3.58%.

Subscribe Now

Access to a full range of industry content, analysis and expert commentary.

30-Day Free Trial

No credit card required. Access coverage of the securitization marketplace, including breaking news updated throughout the day.