The national mortgage delinquency rate grew to 9.2% in May, up 2.3% from a month earlier and 7.9% from a year earlier, according to the latest report from mortgage performance data and analytics provider Lender Processing Services (LPS). A spike in the volume of mortgages becoming 30-days delinquent drove the overall uptick, according to the report (download here), while new real estate owned (REO) assets slipped from recent all-time highs: LPS noted more than 7.3m mortgages in some stage of delinquency or REO. The national foreclosure inventory rate was nearly 3.2% in May, up from 3.18% in April, bringing the total non-current rate of loans either delinquent or in foreclosure to 12.4%. The average number of days elapsing from the time a mortgage becomes 30 days delinquent to foreclosure sale continued to rise in May, reaching a record-high of 449 days, LPS said. The extension of the delinquency/foreclosure timeline indicates a growing number of loans are distressed at any given time, resulting in an increase of shadow foreclosure inventory. The rates of mortgages rolling into later stages of delinquency also increased, with 2.5 loans rolling into a “worse” status for every one that improved in May. Cure rates declined in every stage of delinquency except for the “greater than six months delinquent” stage, and overall are back down to levels experienced over the previous two years, LPS noted. Write to Diana Golobay.

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