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Mortgage Business Contracts at Fifth Third

Quarterly mortgage originations geared down at Fifth Third Bancorp, while the servicing portfolio was reduced and home loan assets were cut.

Residential loans funded between Jan. 1 and March 31 totaled $1.7 billion, Fifth Third said in its first-quarter earnings report.

As has been the case with all lenders to so far report first quarter activity, business slowed from the fourth-quarter 2013, when Fifth Third closed $2.6 billion.

Activity has nose dived from a year earlier, when mortgage production came in at $7.4 billion.

Fifth Third said it serviced $68.909 billion in residential loans for third parties as of last month, off from the $69.159 billion serviced as of December 2013 but up from $64.768 in March 2013.

As of March 31, 2014, residential holdings were $22.400 billion. Residential assets were reduced from $22.816 billion three months earlier and $24.440 billion a year earlier.

The most recent residential portfolio included $13.275 billion in mortgages and $9.125 billion in home-equity loans.

On the mortgage portion of the portfolio, delinquency of at least 90 days fell to 0.44 percent from 0.52 percent at the end of 2013. On the same date in 2013, serious delinquency was 0.61 percent.

Delinquency on the HEL portion of residential assets was deemed “not meaningful” in the latest and fourth quarters. HEL delinquency was 1.02 percent as of March 31, 2013.

Commercial real estate loans serviced for third parties closed out the first quarter at $315 million, little changed from $317 million in the prior period but down from $362 million in the same period during the prior year.

CRE loans owned by Fifth Third finished last month at $9.179 billion, slightly more than the $9.110 billion owned at the end of December. CRE assets have been trimmed from a year earlier, when the total stood at $9.476 billion.

Last month’s total CRE loans included $7.959 billion in commercial mortgages and $1.220 billion in construction loans.

Delinquency on commercial mortgages was “not meaningful,” as was delinquency on construction loans.

After taking $51 million in litigation reserve charges, first-quarter income before taxes at Fifth Third Bancorp declined to $438 million from $561 million in previous period and $591 million in the year-earlier period.

There were 19,080 full-time equivalent employees on staff as of March 31 at the Cincinnati-based company. Company-wide headcount slipped from 19,446 in the prior quarter and slid from 20,744 at the same point last year.

Fifth Third said it operated 1,311 banking centers, nine fewer than at the end of 2013.

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