Illustration: Aïda Amer/Axios

The housing market continued to slow as mortgage applications fell 10.1% from last week, according to data from the Mortgage Bankers Association’s (MBA) weekly survey.

Why it matters: The MBA survey released this morning follows weak numbers from the Case-Shiller 20-city home price index, which rose just 2% month-over-month in July and did not rise at all on a monthly basis after seasonal adjustments.

  • This represents the slowest rate of home price appreciation since 2012.

The intrigue: Despite a fall in U.S. Treasury yields and the Fed cutting overnight interest rates last week, the average U.S. 30-year mortgage rate ticked up above 4%, MBA's data showed.

  • "[D]espite falling yields, mortgage rates ticked up again and have risen 20 basis points over the past two weeks,” said Joel Kan, MBA’s associate vice president of economic and industry forecasting.
  • “The increase in rates led to fewer refinances, and activity has now dropped 17 percent over the last two weeks.”

Go deeper: Millennials are relandscaping the housing market

Go deeper

Dion Rabouin, author of Markets
4 mins ago - Economy & Business

Why the stimulus delay isn't a crisis (yet)

Illustration: Aïda Amer/Axios

If the impasse between House Speaker Nancy Pelosi and the White House on a new stimulus deal is supposed to be a crisis, you wouldn't know it from the stock market, where prices continue to rise.

  • That's been in no small part because U.S. economic data has held up remarkably well in recent months thanks to the $2 trillion CARES Act and Americans' unusual ability to save during the crisis.
13 mins ago - World

Israel's secret embassy in Bahrain

Illustration: Annelise Capossela/Axios

This story is from Barak Ravid's new weekly newsletter, Axios from Tel Aviv, which launches today. Sign up here.

Israel has been conducting undercover diplomacy in Bahrain for more than a decade through a front company listed as a commercial consulting firm.

Why it matters: The existence of the covert diplomatic mission in the Bahraini capital Manama shows the depth of a secret relationship that came out into the open with a White House ceremony last month.

QAnon conspiracy theory explodes ahead of the election

Illustration: Sarah Grillo/Axios

The QAnon conspiracy theory is growing — and being weaponized to boost President Trump ahead of the election.

Why it matters: What began as a single conspiracy theory linking Hillary Clinton to child trafficking four years ago is now part of a convoluted web of falsehoods being spread to undermine Joe Biden.