Banks are steadily shrinking their mortgage portfolios—report

by Ryan Smith31 Mar 2016
Big banks are steadily shrinking their mortgage portfolios, according to a new report.

The Office of the Comptroller of the Currency released its quarterly report on mortgages Thursday. The report focuses on mortgage performance in the federal banking system by analyzing data from seven reporting banks: Bank of America, JPMorgan Chase, Citibank, U.S. Bank, Wells Fargo, CIT Bank, HSBC and PNC.

The report showed that the big banks have been steadily backing away from mortgages. as of Dec. 31, the reporting banks were servicing about 21.5 million first-lien mortgages, representing about $3.7 trillion in unpaid principal. That accounted for just 41% of all outstanding first-lien residential mortgage debt in the U.S., according to the report. And it’s down from 24.9million mortgages in the fourth quarter of 2014.

Total serviced mortgage portfolio (number of loans in thousands)

Source: OCC

From the end of 2013 to the end of 2015, the total serviced mortgage portfolio of the reporting banks dropped 14%, according to a HousingWire report. The quality of the mortgages in the portfolio, however, is improving. In the third quarter of 2015, about 93.9% of the mortgages included in the portfolio were current and performing. In the fourth quarter, that number had crept up to 94.1%.


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