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Insured Mortgages Expand

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New mortgage insurance business was little changed last month and likely was little changed in February. But total outstanding mortgages that are insured have grown each of the past eight months.

January saw 36,923 U.S. mortgages insured for $10.477 billion. Activity was marginally mixed from December, when 36,543 policies were issued for $10.691 billion.

During the same month last year, mortgage insurers issued 21,904 policies for $4.968 billion.

The numbers reflect activity at members of the Mortgage Insurance Companies of America including Genworth Mortgage Insurance Corp., Mortgage Guaranty Insurance Corp. and Radian Guaranty Inc.

Business was likely little changed in February based on new applications, which edged up to 39,571 last month from 38,915 in December.

Primary insurance in force closed out January at $401.055 billion, up from $400.696 billion at the end of 2012. Outstanding policies have grown each month since May 2012, when insurance in force was $395.582 billion.

The total was $399.243 billion as of Jan. 31, 2012.

MICA reported that primary insurance defaults fell to 23,538 from 24,585 in December and 29,348 in January 2012.

Primary insurance cures inched up to 20,568 in January from 20,048 and were 23,728 in January of last year.

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