U.S. mortgage applications plunged to a seven-month low last week as demand for home refinancing loans tumbled 30 percent, data from an industry group showed on Wednesday.The drop does not bode well for the hard-hit U.S. housing market, which has been showing some signs of stabilization, with sales rising and home price declines moderating in many regions of the country.

The Mortgage Bankers Association said its seasonally adjusted index of mortgage applications, which includes both purchase and refinance loans, for the week ended June 26 decreased 18.9 percent to 444.8, the lowest reading since the week ended November 21, 2008. Kenneth Rosen, chairman of the Fisher Center for Real Estate and Urban Economics at the University of California, Berkeley, said mortgage rates are just one factor driving potential borrowers.

“Rising unemployment, concerns about job security, potential buyers’ inability to sell their existing homes and problems with appraisals coming in too low are all weighing on demand,” he said.
Read the full article by Julie Haviv “U.S. mortgage applications fall to 7-month low” at Yahoo! Finance.

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