Countrywide Financial Corp.'s monthly volume declined again, with the biggest declines occurring in its nonprime lending.
February loan fundings of $27 billion decreased 5% from the previous month, the Calabasas, Calif.-based lender announced Tuesday, but the total is 16% higher than a year earlier.
"Production volume for the month of February was representative of seasonal trends and a modest rise in interest rates from the preceding months," commented company president Stanford Kurland in the announcement.
February subprime and home equity fundings were each $2.6 billion, according to the report, off significantly from January when subprime production was $4 billion and home equity production was $3 billion.
Purchase loans accounted for 44% of the volume, Countrywide reported, while adjustable-rate loans comprised 52%.
Kurland pointed out that a temporary drop in the 10-year U.S. Treasury yield during the month generated a spark in refinance application activity, which contributed to increased average daily application volume and a 14% growth in the pipeline of loans to $55 billion at February's end. "It's noteworthy that January and February had 19 business days whereas March will have 23 business days," the executive said.
February's volume was amassed by $10 billion from the correspondent lending division, about $9 billion from consumer markets and $5 billion from wholesale. Capital Markets and Treasury Bank fundings accounted for the rest, the announcement said.
The servicing portfolio climbed 1% from the prior month to $878 billion, "and is poised to exceed the $1 trillion level before year-end 2005," according to Kurland.
Portfolio delinquency reportedly tumbled 15 basis points to 3.74% during the month and foreclosures pending remained at 0.45%.