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LTVs Tighten

Mortgage Credit Availability Index lower in November

Dec. 10, 2013

By Mortgage Daily staff

Among the factors contributing to a slight tightening of credit last month was a pullback by investors on loan-to-value ratios.

In November, the Mortgage Credit Availability Index, which is a summary measure that indicates the availability of mortgage credit at a specific point in time, landed at 110.2.

The index retreated from October, when it came in at 111.5. The decline indicates that home lending standards are tightening.

The MCAI is reported by the Mortgage Bankers Association based on an analysis of data from AllRegs Market Clarity product.

A year ago, the index was around 106.

While the index was 1 percent lower last month, the movement was trivial compared to the drop since 2007 -- when it would have been roughly 800.

"A significant number of loan programs allowing for more than 95 LTV and low-to-mid range minimum FICOs were either discontinued in November, or transitioned into programs with lower LTV maximums and/or higher minimum credit scores," MBA explained in the report. "Investor pull-back from programs with greater than 30 year terms and interest-only programs continued as the industry prepares for new regulations coming into effect in January 2014."

The trade group noted, however, that investors increased cashout offerings to well-qualified borrowers.

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