The 30-plus day delinquency rate on loans held in commercial mortgage-backed securities rose 0.37 percentage points in the fourth quarter to 8.95%, which is the highest since the Mortgage Bankers Association began issuing its Commercial/Multifamily Delinquency Report in 1997. Meanwhile, the MBA asserted that "delinquency rates for other groups remain below levels seen in the last major real estate downturn during the early 1990s." The trade group said delinquency rates fell on multifamily loans held by Freddie Mac and banks insured by the Federal Deposit Insurance Corp. The 90-plus day delinquency rate on loans held by FDIC-insured banks and thrifts fell 0.22 percentage points to 4.19%, making it the first drop in the segment since early 2006, according to the MBA. In addition, the 60-plus day delinquency rate on loans held in life company portfolios and by Freddie Mac fell to 0.19% and 0.31%, respectively. The MBA also said the 60-plus day delinquency rate on multifamily loans held or insured by Fannie Mae increased slightly to 0.71%. "The recession's downward pull on commercial and multifamily mortgage performance has slackened," said Jamie Woodwell, MBA's vice president of commercial real estate research. "The delinquency rates for commercial and multifamily mortgages at banks and thrifts appear to have peaked at levels well below those of the last recession, and the performance of loans held by life companies, Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac has been relatively strong throughout the downturn. The CMBS market has continued to see elevated levels of stress — although the rate of increase has moderated and some technical issues make a direct comparison of CMBS to other investor groups tricky." The fourth-quarter delinquency rate for bank and thrift loans backed by commercial and multifamily mortgages was 2.39 percentage points lower than the segment's record high of 6.58% in 1991. The MBA also said the fourth-quarter delinquency rate on commercial and multifamily mortgages held by insurance companies is 7.18 percentage points lower than the high of 7.37% that was set in 1993. Write to Kerri Panchuk.