Best automation opportunities for loan processing

Join our expert panelists to learn how lenders can achieve their goals using the integration of intelligent document automation and RPA technology.

4 Strategies to Strengthen Customer Relationships

Discover the right strategies to execute fast-acting campaigns, track results and improve your bottom line – all while strengthening customer relationships.

Real Estate Tech Virtual Demo Day

Join us on March 16 to discover the most innovative operations and closing management tech solutions for the real estate industry.

An Honest Conversation on minority homeownership

In this episode, Lloyd interviews a senior research associate in the Housing Finance Policy Center at the Urban Institute about the history and data behind minority homeownership.

Closing

First American notches $7.1B in 2020 revenue

Fourth quarter revenue was $2.2 billion

“Big Four” title insurer First American Financial Corp. announced a healthy $7.1 billion in total 2020 revenue in its annual earnings report, released Thursday.

That’s a 14% rise year over year, according to officials.

Net income was $696.4 million last year, or $6.16 per diluted share, and a pretax impairment of $54.9 million, or 45 cents per diluted share.

Also announced by the title insurer was a total of $1.1 billion in cash flow operations, a return on equity of 14.9%, and a 15.7% segment pretax margin of title insurance and services.

“Our 2020 performance demonstrated the remarkable resilience of our people amidst the challenges presented by the pandemic,” said First American CEO Dennis Gilmore. “The company closed over one million transactions while most of our people were working from home. We executed on our commitment to return capital to shareholders.”

First American’s total revenue for the fourth quarter of 2020 was $2.2 billion, an increase of 24% year over year. Net income in the fourth quarter was $280.3 million, or $2.49 per diluted share.


Excelerate Capital acquires Castle Mortgage Corporation

Excelerate Capital, a multi-state full-service wholesale, retail and residential mortgage banker, announced the successful completion of its acquisition of Castle Mortgage Corporation. Learn more about the acquisition here.

Presented by: Excelerate Capital

Officials noted First American’s fourth quarter was impacted by two items – a reversal of a portion of the impairment initially taken in the third quarter, resulting in an $18.3 million benefit, and a permanent tax difference of $7.4 million, which adversely impacted the tax rate.

The average revenue per title order fell 6% in the fourth quarter, driven by the shift to refinance transactions, Gilmore said. Total commercial revenue was $226.6 million, down 5% year over year.

Direct premiums and escrow fees were up 24% compared with the fourth quarter of 2019, driven by a 32% increase in the number of
direct title orders closed. This was partially offset by a 6% decline in the average revenue per direct title order closed, officials said.

In January, First American announced it was selling its property and casualty subsidiaries. The sales were made with Safeco Insurance, a Liberty Mutual company, and Heritage Insurance Holdings. First American said the decision will help it focus on its core title business.

First American grew its market share in the title space by one basis point from the second to the third quarter.

Looking ahead, Gilmore said he is encouraged by the rebound in the commercial market in the fourth quarter and expect First American’s commercial business performance to improve throughout 2021.

“The robust mortgage market has continued into [the new year], with strong refinance and purchase activity driven by elevated housing demand and low mortgage rates,” he said.

Leave a comment

Most Popular Articles

Chopra warns of post-COVID housing market fallout

Rohit Chopra warned of housing market fallout and said he would focus on helping struggling homeowners at his Senate Confirmation hearing.

Mar 03, 2021 By

Latest Articles

What to do about the appraiser shortage

Overcoming the current appraiser shortage is the first hurdle in restocking the shallow field. But compounding the problem is a lack of appraisers entering the profession.

Mar 05, 2021 By
3d rendering of a row of luxury townhouses along a street

Log In

Forgot Password?

Don't have an account? Please