Employment, income fraud on mortgage apps edge up in 3Q
Risk of employment or income fraud on mortgages increased 8.8% in the third quarter from the previous quarter and 50% from third quarter 2009, according to research firm Interthinx. The subsidiary of Verisk Analytics (VRSK) said that its general Mortgage Fraud Risk Index remained virtually unchanged for the quarter at 143, down 0.1% from a year ago and up 0.9% from the second quarter. Stagnant or lowering incomes in light of rising loan-to-income ratios likely caused the increase in employment/income fraud risk to 114, Interthinx said. This type of fraud is characterized by false borrower data on mortgage applications. The Stockton, Calif., metropolitan area had the highest risk index at 303, followed by fellow California metros of Modesto (299) and Bakersfield (277). Click on below charts to expand. A score of 100 represents a nominal level of fraud risk, according to Interthinx. By state, Nevada's score of 255 ranked highest, followed by Arizona at 243 and California at 197. Click here to see the full report. Write to Andrew Scoggin. Follow him on Twitter @ascoggin.