Mortgage Applications Tumbled Last Week

Applications for U.S. home mortgages tumbled last week as demand for refinancing sagged for the second week in a row, an industry group said on Wednesday.

The Mortgage Bankers Association said its seasonally adjusted index of mortgage application activity, which includes both refinancing and home purchase demand, dropped 9.6% in the week ended Aug 26.

The MBA's seasonally adjusted index of refinancing applications slumped 12.25, while the gauge of loan requests for home purchases edged up 0.9% after setting a 15-year low set the week before.

"Refinance application volume declined for a second week from recent highs, despite rates staying near a 10-month low, while purchase volume remained near 15-year lows," Mike Fratantoni, MBA's vice president of research and economics, said in a statement.

The refinance share of mortgage activity decreased to 77.8% of total applications from 79.8%. Fixed 30-year mortgage rates averaged 4.32%, down from 4.39% the week before.