Subprime and home equity production soared in 2003 at Washington Mutual Inc.
The Seattle-based banking behemoth reported it purchased subprime loan portfolios and mortgage origination by WaMu's subprime lending arm -- Long Beach Mortgage -- of $6.0 billion in the fourth quarter. This total is above the prior quarter's $5.5 billion, and up from the $4.7 billion in fourth quarter 2002, said the company.
The year-end subprime volume of $20.7 billion jumped 47% from the total in 2002, according to WaMu.
Meanwhile, fourth quarter home equity loans and lines of credit totaled $7.9 billion, down from $9.4 billion in the third quarter. However, the volume was 68% above the fourth quarter a year earlier.
The 2003 home equity and credit total amounted to an all-time high $29.6 billion, soaring 94% from the previous year's level, said WaMu.
Total mortgage lending during the fourth quarter, including conforming and commercial production, was reported at $68.8 billion -- down nearly half from the third quarter.