Mortgage application activity was mixed in the week ending Oct. 26 with refinancings lower and purchases higher.

The Mortgage Bankers Association (MBA) reported the Refinance Index declined 6% to 4466, its lowest level since the end of August. In addition, this was the fourth straight week of declines since hitting a 3-1/2 year high of 5888 at the end of September. As a percent of total applications, refinancing share slipped to 80% from 81%, which is the lowest it's been since early September.

Contributing to the decline were higher mortgage rates. The contract interest rate for 30-year fixed rate conforming loans averaged 3.65%, which were two basis points higher from the previous week and up 12 basis points from its record low at the end of September. Federal Housing Administration rates were unchanged at 3.41%.

After declining in the week ending Oct. 19, the Purchase Index resumed its march higher by 0.5% to 185.2 as home buyers take advantage of historical affordability conditions. Overall, mortgage application activity fell 4.8%.

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