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Serious Delinquencies Reach Record 14.4%: MBA

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The national delinquency rate on one-to-four-unit residential properties climbed to 9.64% of all loans at the end of Q309, according to a survey from the Mortgage Bankers Association (MBA). Including the rate of foreclosures, the US serious delinquency rate is at a record 14.4%. The rate of delinquency jumped 40bp from Q209 and increased 265bp from one year ago, according to the survey. It broke last quarter’s record and stands as the highest delinquency rate since the MBA began compiling data in 1972. The delinquency rate includes loans that are at least one payment past due but not loans in the foreclosure process. Those volume of loans that have entered the foreclosure pipeline accounted for 4.47% of all loans through Q309, an increase from 17bp from the previous quarter. Combined, all loans either in delinquency or in foreclosure reached 14.4%, the highest ever recorded in MBA’s survey. “Despite the recession ending in mid-summer, the decline in mortgage performance continues. Job losses continue to increase and drive up delinquencies and foreclosures because mortgages are paid with paychecks, not percentage point increases in GDP,” said Jay Brinkmann, MBA’s chief economist. Brinkmann added that prime fixed-rate loans continue to hold the largest share of foreclosures started and are the biggest driver in the increase in foreclosures. In Q309, 33% of foreclosures started were prime fixed-rate loans. “The foreclosure numbers for prime fixed-rate loans will get worse because those loans represented 54 percent of the quarterly increase in loans 90 days or more past due but not yet in foreclosure,” Brinkmann said. For the first time, prime adjustable-rate loans deteriorated at a rate exceeding the subprime fixed-rate loans, which had a decrease in foreclosures, Brinkmann said. Florida, California, Arizona and Nevada accounted for 43% of all foreclosures started in Q309. As of the end of September, 25% of the mortgages in Florida were at least one payment past due or in foreclosure. “The outlook is that delinquency rates and foreclosure rates will continue to worsen before they improve. First, it is unlikely the employment picture will get better until sometime next year and even then jobs will increase at a very slow pace,” Brinkmann said. Brinkmann added that the number of loans 90-plus days delinquent or in foreclosure reached over 4m, compared to 3.9m new and previously unoccupied homes currently for sale. “The ultimate resolution of these seriously delinquent loans will put added pressure on the hardest hit sections of the country,” Brinkmann said. Write to Jon Prior.

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