Mortgage applications drop amid falling interest rates

Mortgage applications fell slightly last week as purchases and refinancing agreements slowed, although interest rates hit their lowest levels in nearly a year. 

The Mortgage Bankers Association’s (MBA) weekly applications survey on Wednesday showed a seasonally adjusted 1.2 percent drop from a week eariler, as the housing market tries to kick into a higher gear. 

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Refinancing agreements and purchases each dropped 1 percent, the survey showed.

The refinance share of mortgage activity remained unchanged at 52 percent of total applications from the previous week.

Meanwhile, interest rates dropped to their lowest levels in months. 

The average rate for 30-year fixed-rate mortgages with loan balances of $417,000 or less decreased to 4.31 percent, the lowest level since June 2013.

The rate on similar mortgages with balances greater than $417,000 decreased to 4.23 percent, also the lowest level since June 2013.

Federal Housing Administration loan rates dropped to 4.04 percent, also its lowest rate since June 2013.

The rate for 15-year fixed-rate mortgages decreased to 3.42 percent, the lowest level since October.