The performance of first-lien mortgages serviced by large national and federal savings banks continued to improve in the fourth quarter of 2013, according to a report by the Office of the Comptroller of the Currency.
According to the OCC, 91.8% of mortgages are current and performing at the end of the quarter, compared with 91.4% at the end of the previous quarter and 89.4% a year earlier.
The OCC Mortgage Metrics Report covers just less than half of all first-lien mortgages in the country and only covers mortgages serviced by reporting national banks and federal thrift. The OCC results do not generalize to the country’s mortgage industry as a whole.
The percentage of early stage delinquencies, 30 days+ overdue is 2.6%, down 8.7% from a year ago and the lowest level at year-end since reporting began in January 2008.
Seriously delinquent mortgages—60 days+ overdue decreased to 3.5% compared with 3.6% at the end of the previous quarter and 4.4% a year earlier.
The percentage of mortgages that were seriously delinquent decreased 20.7% from a year earlier.
The number of loans in the process of foreclosure at the end of the fourth quarter of 2013 decreased 45.9% from a year earlier to 523,528.
Servicers initiated 124,468 new foreclosures during the fourth quarter, a 20.6% decrease from a year earlier.
The number of completed foreclosures decreased 42.6% to 60,765, compared to a year ago.
The OCC said factors contributing to the reduction in foreclosure activity include improved economic conditions, foreclosure prevention assistance, and transfer of loans.
Servicers implemented 242,828 home retention actions (modifications, trial-period plans, and shorter-term payment plans) in the quarter compared with 84,031 home forfeiture actions (completed foreclosures, short sales, and deed-in-lieu-of-foreclosure actions).
The number of home retention actions implemented by servicers decreased by 22.4% from the previous quarter and 34.0% from a year earlier.
In the fourth quarter of 2013, 91% of modifications reduced monthly principal and interest payments, and 64.6% of modifications reduced payments by 20% or more.
In total, servicers have modified 3,388,010 mortgages from the beginning of 2008 through the end of the third quarter of 2013.