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MetLife Production Eases

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Mortgage Daily

                                                 February 4, 2010

Forward- and reverse-mortgage originations eased during the latest quarter at MetLife Home Loans, while mortgage headcount dropped by nearly 100.

The unit closed 29,249 loans for $6.621 billion in the fourth-quarter, the company reported to MortgageDaily.com. Business declined from the third quarter’s 31,061 loans for $7.0 billion but was better than $4.5 billion a year earlier.

MetLife additionally closed 5,112 reverse mortgages for $0.807 billion, edging lower from 5,136 loans for $0.927 billion.

Full-year production, including traditional and reverse mortgages, was $36.8 billion. MetLife only owned the mortgage unit for a few months during 2008, when volume was just $5.8 billion. The number of reverse mortgage units closed year-to-date rose to 16,329 from 11,217 through September.

The company’s residential servicing portfolio finished last year at 564,276 loans for $103.4 billion, higher than 553,924 mortgages for $101.0 billion on Sept. 30, 2009.

Parent Metlife Inc. reported in its earnings data that mortgage loans held-for-investment were nearly unchanged from Sept. 30 at $48.2 billion — though just $1.5 billion was “residential and consumer loans.”

Commercial mortgage assets ended last year at $34.6 billion, lower than $34.8 billion three months earlier and $36.0 billion one year earlier.

The parent reported a $313 million fourth-quarter profit, improving from a $625 million loss in the prior quarter but tumbling from the $976 million profit the prior year.

The Bridgewater, N.J.-based lender reported that it employed 4,057 people in the mortgage operation as of Dec. 31, fewer than the 4,150 reported for three months earlier.

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