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July Mortgage Employment Up Slightly

Labor report shows # employed in mortgage industry increased even as layoffs reported

September 5, 2003

By MortgageDaily.com staff

While the government reports that the number of Americans working in the mortgage industry increased, this employment sector is beginning to show signs of contraction.

According to the most recent monthly employment report from the Bureau of Labor Statistics, the category Real Estate Credit had 248,200 people employed in it as of July on a non-seasonally adjusted basis. This was up from the prior month's 242,000, but down from the prior year when there were 268,600 people reported in this category.

The Bureau of Labor Statistics is part of the U.S. Department of Labor.

The number of Loan Brokers, mortgage and nonmortgage, reached 84,700 in July, the Bureau reported, up from 84,100 the prior month and 83,200 a year ago.

Mortgage rates have risen from their recent lows, wiping out much of the refinance activity that had driven mortgage production to record levels during the past year. As a result, the industry is starting to see signs of contraction -- such as the layoffs reported this week at the mortgage units of DiTech and E*Trade.

The Bureau reported that overall unemployment was unchanged at 6.1%. While the Manufacturing and Information sectors saw job losses, Health Care and Construction added jobs.

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