Breaking a 6-month trend, ABN AMRO Mortgage Group Inc. announced an increase in loan production. A company executive noted that the current low rate environment is a second chance for borrowers that missed the last refinance wave.
The Ann Arbor, Mich.-based lender reported its production last month totaled $4.05 billion, a 22% increase from the revised $3.1 billion reported in January. Volume had declined monthly since reaching a record in July. While business picked up month-to-month, production is way below the $11.6 billion total in February 2003.
The increase was "reflective of the recent drop in mortgage interest rates," said Mike Maher, group senior vice president, in a written statement. "ABN AMRO customers who did not refinance their mortgage during the 2003 refinance 'boom' are seizing this opportunity."
Rates have hovered last summer's lows for several weeks now. Last week, the 30-year fixed-rate mortgage averaged 5.40%, according to Freddie Mac, while the 1-year adjustable-rate mortgage average was at the lowest level in over 20 years at 3.36%.
The latest production was derived from more than 23,900 loans, said the Michigan group.
With $3.1 billion in loan volume, ABN AMRO's top originating channel for the month was InterFirst Wholesale Mortgage Lending. However, the total for the wholesale lending division is down nearly 15% from January and a whopping 67% below last February's total.