The Mortgage Bankers Association of America is revamping its weekly indexes starting this week, providing more detailed information than had been readily available to lenders.
The old release gave the three primary indexes: purchase index of application volume for new or existing home purchases, the refinancing index and the basic index, and a combination of purchase and refinancing application activity. All three were given in seasonally adjusted and unadjusted figures.
The new survey will detail the information in 16 indexes as well as a summary of interest rates for each loan product.
Application activity will now be indexed by product type, listing applications of conventional mortgages, government loans, fixed-rate loans, adjustable-rate loans, and five- and seven-year balloon mortgages.
Applications of each specific loan type will be broken down by total applications, purchase activity, and refinancing activity. The numbers will be offered in seasonally adjusted and unadjusted form.
"The beauty of this is we have not created new indexes," said David Lereah, chief economist at the MBA, who worked for three months on the survey. The MBA has compiled all of the information since 1990, it just has not been released before.
Mr. Lereah said the detailed indexes were a result of requests by lenders for more information.
"Given the changing market conditions, the emphasis has changed here. We are more responsive to market changes and needs." In the past, the MBA did not invest the time or resources to compile and release the information, he said.
With the growing popularity of adjustable-rate and balloon mortgages, lenders can now follow and contrast the survey's ARM and balloon indexes against a fixed-rate index, he said.