Mortgage refinancing requests climb 21 percent

AP News
Posted: Oct 13, 2010 11:52 AM
Mortgage refinancing requests climb 21 percent

Applications for mortgage refinancings jumped last week, while purchase applications fell.

The Mortgage Bankers Association said Wednesday overall applications rose 14.6 percent from a week earlier, driven by a 21 percent increase in applications to refinance home loans. Applications for loans to purchase homes, however, tumbled 8.5 percent from a week earlier.

Rates have been at or near the lowest level in decades since spring as investors have poured money into safer Treasury bonds, lowering their yields. Mortgage rates tend to track those yields. However the weak economy has dissuaded would-be homebuyers from purchasing.

The average rate for a 30-year fixed loan dipped to 4.21 percent from 4.25 percent a week earlier. Rates on the 15-year fixed-rate mortgage, a common refinancing option, fell to 3.62 percent from 3.73 percent. Those were the lowest rate levels on record for this survey, which started in 1990.

The Mortgage Bankers Association's survey covers more than 50 percent of all applications nationwide.