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Mortgage Employment News | Employment Index | Employment Statistics
Job additions, layoffs and employment lawsuits. Employment data from the Department of Labor, state tracking, reports and analysis. Job finding tips.

Mortgage Employment Continues Contraction

255,500 mortgage jobs in October

Dec. 4, 2009

By staff

Despite falling mortgage rates, mortgage jobs fell -- as they have for most of 2009.

Aggregate headcount in real estate finance was 255,500 in October, a report from the U.S. Department of Labor today indicted. Employment declined from a revised 259,200 during the previous month.

A year earlier, mortgage jobs numbered a revised 290,900.

Over the past year, mortgage employment has expanded during just a single month: July.

The latest decline has occurred even as mortgage have fallen to their lowest levels on record -- with the 30-year fixed-rate mortgage reported at 4.71 percent yesterday by Freddie Mac. But the incredibly low rates have, as of yet, failed to spark a major refinance rally -- with the Mortgage Bankers Association reporting that the number of new loan applications was lower in its latest survey.

Included in the latest mortgage employment figure were 190,300 "real estate credit" positions, down from September's 192,300. "Mortgage and nonmortgage loan brokers" fell to 65,200 from 66,900.

Impacting October employment activity were 990 Newport Beach, Calif., layoffs by U.S. Bank; 584 California job cuts during the fourth-quarter by JPMorgan Chase & Co. -- including 55 at a San Diego Chase Home Lending location; and 146 October layoffs in Ohio at PNC Financial Services Group Inc.

In addition, the October closings of AME Financial Corp., Envision Lending Group, The Lending Co. and Stockton Turner & Co. impacted nearly 2,000 employees. Another recent failure impacting an unknown number of employees was the closing of Northeast Mortgage Corp.

But offsetting reported layoffs were 260 jobs that Digital Risk LLC planned to start adding; 200 hirings planned at Discount Mortgage Relief and 37 job additions at Capital Mortgage Services of Texas.

As the mortgage sector continues its contraction, overall U.S. nonfarm employment was "essentially unchanged," while unemployment declined to 10.0 percent in November from 10.2 percent in October, the Labor Department reported.

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