Although the 30-year fixed mortgage rate dropped to its lowest level since January, overall mortgage applications last week were down 3.7 percent on a seasonally adjusted basis from the week before, according to the Mortgage Bankers Association’s latest survey.

The seasonally adjusted refinance index decreased by 4.3 percent to 1,935.3 from 2,022.2 the previous week, and the purchase index decreased by 2.8 percent to 401.4 from 412.9 one week earlier.

The refinance share of mortgage activity increased to 48.6 percent of total applications from 48 percent the previous week, and is now at its highest level since February 2005. The adjustable-rate mortgage (ARM) share of activity remained unchanged from the previous week at 25.5 percent of total applications.

The average contract interest rate for 30-year fixed-rate mortgages fell to 6.13 percent last week — a 10-month low — from 6.15 percent the previous week, with points including the origination fee decreasing to 0.95 from 0.98 for 80 percent loan-to-value-ratio loans.

Points, which are fees charged by lenders for loan processing, are expressed as a percent of the total loan amount.

The average contract interest rate for 15-year fixed-rate mortgages increased to 5.88 percent from 5.85 percent, with points including the origination fee decreasing to 0.96 from 1 for 80 percent loan-to-value-ratio loans.

The average contract interest rate for one-year ARMs increased to 5.88 percent from 5.87, with points including the origination fee increasing to 0.8 from 0.78 for 80 percent loan-to-value-ratio loans.

Washington, D.C.-based Mortgage Bankers Association is a national association representing the real estate finance industry. The survey covers approximately 50 percent of all U.S. retail residential mortgage originations, and has been conducted weekly since 1990. Respondents include mortgage bankers, commercial banks and thrifts.

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