Mortgage applications to refinance a home loan, which are highly rate-sensitive, rose up 9 percent for the week. They are still 35 percent lower compared than the same week one year ago, when interest rates were slightly lower.
The jump in mortgage applications is impressive on its own, but it would have been higher had two massive hurricanes not struck the U.S. this month.
“To illustrate the impact of the two major hurricanes, over the past two weeks, mortgage applications for the state of Texas ran about 25 percent lower than the state’s weekly average for the year to date, reflecting the impact of Hurricane Harvey,” said Kan. “Additionally, in the most recent week we saw mortgage applications in Florida fall 48 percent lower than its 2017 weekly average, as many residents evacuated in anticipation of Hurricane Irma. In comparison, the level of applications for the nation last week was only 12 percent lower than its 2017 average.”
Mortgage rates began moving higher this week, as concerns abated about North Korea, which had pushed investors to the relative safety of the bond markets. Investors began pulling out of bonds this week, causing interest rates to rise. Mortgage rates loosely follow the yield on the 10-year U.S. Treasury.
Source : cnbc.com