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US mortgage applications fall 7.1% as purchases, refinancing decline

U.S. mortgage applications fell in the week that ended Oct. 12 from the previous week as the interest rate for 30-year fixed mortgages continued to rise above 5%.

The seasonally adjusted market composite index declined by 7.1% from the prior week. The unadjusted index decreased by 7% from a week ago, the Mortgage Bankers Association said.

"Mortgage applications were likely impacted by both the Columbus Day holiday and the increase in rates, as we saw declines in both purchase and refinance activity," said Joel Kan, associate vice president of industry surveys and forecasts at the MBA.

Applications to purchase a house were down 6% from the previous week on a seasonally adjusted basis. The unadjusted purchase index also fell by 6% from a week earlier but was up 2% from the same week a year ago.

The unadjusted refinance index dropped by 9% from the prior week. The refinance share of mortgage activity declined to 38.1% of total applications from 39.0% in the previous week.