Mortgage applications edged up last week: MBA

NEW YORK Wed Apr 24, 2013 7:08am EDT

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NEW YORK (Reuters) - Applications for U.S. home mortgages edged up last week as rates fell for the fifth week in a row, data from an industry group showed on Wednesday.

The Mortgage Bankers Association said its seasonally adjusted index of mortgage application activity, which includes both refinancing and home purchase demand, rose 0.2 percent in the week ended April 19.

It was a relatively small change for an index that can have large swings in either direction.

The seasonally adjusted index of refinancing applications edged up 0.3 percent, while the gauge of loan requests for home purchases, a leading indicator of home sales, also added 0.3 percent.

The refinance share of total mortgage activity was unchanged at 75 percent of applications.

Fixed 30-year mortgage rates averaged 3.65 percent in the week, down 2 basis points from 3.67 percent the week before.

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

(Reporting by Leah Schnurr; Editing by Leslie Adler)

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