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

Chase Originations Rise and Headed Higher

Residential production up 8%

Oct. 12, 2012

By Mortgage Daily staff

Despite a drop in retail originations, quarterly residential production at JPMorgan Chase & Co. was higher thanks to its correspondent business and is poised to increase again. Home-loan assets, delinquency and earnings were all lower, as was the number of mortgage employees.

The New York-based financial services giant reported Friday third-quarter home-loan production of $47.3 billion. It marked the second consecutive quarter of growth.

Business strengthened from $43.9 billion in the prior three-month period and $36.8 billion in the same quarter during 2011. The improvement reflected "higher volumes due to historically low interest rates and the Home Affordable Refinance Programs."

Third-quarter activity included $25.5 billion in retail originations, slipping from $26.1 billion in the previous quarter. Correspondent volume, however, jumped to $20.1 billion from $16.5 billion, and negotiated transactions grew to $1.7 billion from $1.1 billion.

Business appears to be headed even higher based on loan applications, which climbed to $73.2 billion from the second quarter's $66.9 billion.

An additional $0.375 billion in home-equity loans were originated, increasing from the second quarter's $0.360 billion and third-quarter 2011 volume of $0.294 billion.

Total originations, including HEL production, was $130.6 billion during the nine months ended Sept. 30.

Chase finished the latest quarter with a third-party mortgage servicing portfolio of $814.8 billion, trimming the portfolio from $860.0 billion as of June 30 and cutting it from $924.5 billion as of Sept. 30, 2011.

The mortgage investment portfolio closed out last month at $181.491 billion, shrinking from $187.101 billion at the end of June and $203.631 billion at the same point in 2011. Home-equity holdings accounted for $91.118 billion of the total, while prime mortgages amounted to $76.466 billion and subprime loans were $13.254 billion.

Delinquency of at least 30 days on mortgage assets, excluding purchased credit-impaired loans, improved to 5.12 percent from 5.16 percent in the second quarter and 5.80 percent in the same quarter in 2011.

Chase reduced its mortgage repurchase liability to $3.099 billion from $3.293 billion in the second quarter. The total reflected $0.268 billion in realized losses and repurchase provisions of $0.074 billion.

Income before taxes within mortgage production and servicing slipped to $928 million from $996 million three months earlier. But the division saw income soar from $340 million a year earlier.

"In our mortgage banking business, we were encouraged that credit trends continued to modestly improve, and, as a result, the firm reduced the related loan loss reserves by $900 million," JPMorgan Chairman and Chief Executive Officer Jamie Dimon explained in the report. "Despite this improvement, the absolute level of charge-offs remains elevated. We also expect to see high default-related expense for a while longer."

During the latest period, income before taxes at the parent company jumped to $7.986 billion from the second quarter's $7.000 billion and was $5.818 billion in the third-quarter 2011.

Mortgage staffing was cut to 47,412 from 49,535 as of June 30. Headcount was 46,374 a year prior.

Chase finished September with 259,547 company-wide employees, fewer than the 262,882 people employed at the end of the second quarter. At the same point last year, headcount was 256,663.

Retail branch count climbed to 5,596 from 5,563 in the second quarter.

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