Home loan applications picked up last week despite an increase in long-term mortgage rates, the Mortgage Bankers Association reported today. The market composite index, a measure of total mortgage application volume, last week rose 2.4 percent on a seasonally adjusted basis from the final week of September, according to MBA. The index that tracks refinancings posted the strongest growth, at 2.7 percent, followed by the purchase-loan index, which gained 2.1 percent from the previous week. Interest rates on long-term loans were higher last week, while those on adjustable-rate mortgages (ARMs) fell, MBA reported. The average contract interest rate on 30-year fixed-rate mortgages climbed to 6.4 percent from 6.32 percent; the 15-year fixed rate grew to an average 6.03 percent from 5.95 percent; and the one-year ARM decreased to 6.15 percent from 6.21 percent. Points, which are loan-processing fees expressed as a percent of the total loan amount, averaged 1 on the 30-year loans, 1...
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