U.S. mortgage applications drop in week - MBA

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NEW YORK, Nov 21 (Reuters) U.S. mortgage applications fell last week, with demand for both refinancings and home purchases waning, an industry group said on Wednesday.

The Mortgage Bankers Association's seasonally adjusted mortgage application index fell 3.6 percent to 681.7 in the week ended Nov.

16.

Average 30-year fixed-rate mortgages, excluding fees, dipped 0.01 percentage point to 6.18 percent.

The MBA's seasonally adjusted purchase index dropped 2.0 percent to 424.1, while its seasonally adjusted index of refinancing applications fell 5.0 percent to 2,199.9.

Most signs point to flagging demand for housing, with buyers fearful of purchasing a fast depreciating asset, economists have said.

The ongoing credit crisis is also making it harder for many potential borrowers to get loans approved by more stringent lenders.

REUTERS BJR RS1956

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