|As fourth quarter mortgage originations fell for federally insured financial institutions, credit line and repurchase activity soared. The biggest bank, as measured by assets, had more than $2 billion in repurchases -- nearly doubling from the prior period.
Wells Fargo Bank NA originated $19.0 billion in retail mortgages during the first quarter, making it the biggest retail mortgage lender among government-insured banks, according to data provided by the Federal Deposit Insurance Corporation to MortgageDaily.com. Retail activity at the San Francisco-based bank dropped from $21.4 billion during the third quarter.
The data were based on reports from 682 institutions with assets of at least $1 billion or quarterly mortgage originations of more than $10 million as of Dec. 31.
With $8.5 billion in retail fundings, Bank of America NA was No. 2. BoA's retail activity declined from the third quarter's $8.8 billion.
JPMorgan Chase Bank NA was No. 3 at $7.0 billion in retail business, easing from $7.2 billion; and National City Bank, which saw retail fundings fall to $3.1 billion from $3.5 billion, was No. 4. The fifth highest level of retail production was at SunTrust Bank, where fourth-quarter volume was $2.3 billion, tumbling from $3.7 billion.
Aggregate fourth-quarter retail volume at all 682 banks was $66.7 billion, down from $70.8 billion three months earlier.
FDIC-insured institutions had outstanding retail home-equity line-of-credit commitments of $1.8 billion, climbing from $1.3 billion in the third quarter. Principal HELOC outstanding was $0.8 billion, up from $0.6 billion.
Wells was also the biggest wholesale mortgage lender, with $44.5 billion in fourth-quarter wholesale production reported for Wells Fargo Bank NA, up from $43.9 billion, and $18.3 billion reported for Wells Fargo Bank S Cntl NA, climbing from the third quarter's $17.4 billion.
No. 2 was JPMorgan, where fourth-quarter wholesale fundings were $18.7 billion, falling from $23.0 billion the prior period. Next was Citibank National Association, which originated $12.7 billion in wholesale business, down from the third quarter's $18.8 billion; then Colonial Bank, with fourth-quarter third-party originations falling to $12.4 billion from $14.7 billion; and GMAC Bank, with $6.4 billion in wholesale production, down from $8.9 billion in the third quarter.
Aggregate wholesale business at all the reporting institutions was $148.0 billion during the final quarter of 2008, easing from the third quarter's $157.7 billion.
Wholesale HELOC commitments stood at $1.9 billion during the latest period, climbing from $1.0 billion on Sep. 30, 2008. Fourth-quarter wholesale HELOC principal was $1.2 billion for the wholesale channel, soaring from $0.6 billion.
Repurchase activity was highest at JPMorgan, which reported that fourth-quarter repurchases were $2.3 billion -- more than doubling from $1.0 billion in the prior period.
BoA repurchases were $0.4 billion, rising from the third quarter's $0.3 billion; while National City said its repurchases increased to $0.2 billion from $0.1 billion. No. 4 was Wells Fargo, which saw repurchases increase slightly to $0.1 billion; and Fifth Third Bank, where fourth-quarter repurchases increased to $0.1 billion from less than $0.1 billion.
Total repurchases at all reporting institutions jumped to $3.3 billion from the third-quarter's $1.9 billion.
By assets, JPMorgan was the biggest FDIC-insured institution, with $1.746 trillion as of Dec. 31, 2008. BoA was next, at $1.472 trillion, then Citibank, at $1.231 trillion. No. 4 was Wachovia, which had $0.635 trillion in assets at the end of last year, then Wells Fargo, where yearend assets stood at $0.539 trillion.