US mortgage applications plunge at near record levels. The US housing recovery seems to be stalling fast. Over the past month, applications for mortgages fell at the fastest rate in 3 years. It appears that the increase in mortgage rates was enough to reduce housing demand, despite the fact that mortgage rates are still near historic lows. This new data contradicts the common prediction that the housing recovery was healthy and self-sustaining. What's even more troubling is that the last time that mortgage applications fell by this much was in 2006, right before the housing bubble burst. (VIEW LINK)