Mortgage applications rose last week: MBA

NEW YORK Wed Dec 5, 2012 7:05am EST

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NEW YORK (Reuters) - Applications for U.S. home mortgages rose last week as loan requests for new purchases hit a new high for the year, 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, rose 4.5 percent in the week ended November 30.

The MBA's seasonally adjusted index of refinancing applications rose 6.1 percent, while the gauge of loan requests for home purchases, a leading indicator of home sales, rose 0.1 percent, rising for the fourth straight week and reaching another high point on the year.

The refinance share of total mortgage activity rose to 83 percent of applications from 81 percent the week before.

Fixed 30-year mortgage rates averaged 3.52 percent, down 1 basis point from 3.53 percent.

The survey covers over 75 percent of U.S. retail residential mortgage applications, according to MBA.

(Reporting By Gabriel Debenedetti; Editing by Diane Craft)

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