Mortgage lending increased substantially in 2012, according to data released Wednesday by the federal government.
Data from 7,400 financial institutions covered by the Home Mortgage Disclosure Act (HMDA), released Wednesday, showed all types of mortgage loans increased by 38% in 2012, driven primarily by refinancing.
“The total number of originated loans of all types and purposes reported increased by about 2.7 million, or 38 percent, from 2011, in part because of a 54 percent increase in the number of refinancings,” noted a statement from the Federal Financial Institutions Examination Council (FFIEC). Home purchase lending also increased, but by a more modest 13 percent.
Meanwhile, the Federal Housing Administration’s share of first-lien lending fell from 2011’s 31% to 27% in 2012. The number of Veterans Administration-backed loans was up in 2012, increasing 11% from the previous year.
The FFIEC also noted that black and Hispanic borrowers were denied for mortgages more often than non-Hispanic white borrowers, a trend consistent with previous years. However, the FFIEC release cautioned that “HMDA data alone cannot be used to determine whether a lender is complying with fair lending laws.”