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Quarterly residential mortgage production by lender. Subprime, Alt-A, home equity and conforming originations. Volume by quarter since 2003.


CA Jumbo Activity Migrating South

BoA, Wells dominate California originations

July 16, 2009

By MortgageDaily.com staff


Two mortgage lenders dominate the California market, according to a new report. Jumbo loan activity appears to be easing in the Bay Area while increasing in Southern California.

The two most active lenders in the San Francisco area last month were Bank of America and Wells Fargo, MDA DataQuick reported today. Their combined share was 30 percent

Nationally, Wells Fargo was the biggest residential lender during the first quarter with $101 billion in U.S. originations. No. 2 BoA funded $89 billion.

The jumbo share of Bay Area mortgage originations rose to 29 percent -- the highest level since August 2008, according to the report. But the number of high-end property transactions in the region has been diminishing -- potentially suggesting a decline in the number of jumbo transactions even as the share of jumbo loans increases.

FHA business accounted for 24 percent of June purchase originations in the area, 11 percent higher than a year earlier.

MDA said home sales in the San Francisco area jumped 16 percent from May to 8,644 units. Bay Area home sales were 20 percent higher than in June 2008. The report indicated home sales "jumped to their highest level in almost three years."

Median Bay Area home prices rose 3 percent from the previous month to $352,000, MDA said. But the median price tumbled from $485,000 in June 2008. The decline in the year-over-year median price, which peaked at $665,000 in June 2007, was partly attributed to the loss of high-end property activity.

In Southern California, jumbo share of purchase mortgages increased to 15 percent -- the highest since August 2008. FHA accounted for 37 percent of Southern California purchase activity, easing slightly from May but 20 percent better than June 2008.

The region includes San Diego County, Orange County, Los Angeles County, Ventura County, Riverside County and San Bernardino County.

Non-owner occupied financing and financing for absentee buyers represented 19 percent of June's activity, edging down from May's 20 percent.

BoA dominated purchase financings, with 20 percent of the Southern California market, MDA said. Wells Fargo's share was 10 percent.

Southern California
home sales reached a 30-month high at 23,262 units last month. Sales in May were 20,775, while they were 18,032 in June 2008.

Foreclosures accounted for 45 percent of June sales in the Southland, easing from 50 percent in May.

"As the influence of deeply discounted foreclosures in lower-cost areas has waned in recent months, sales in higher-cost housing markets have increased and accounted for a greater share of total transactions," the report said. "The recent shift toward higher-cost markets contributing more to overall sales has put upward pressure on the region's median sale price."

The median Southern California price increased 6 percent from May to $265,000, though it was down by 26 percent from last year.

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