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Banks’ Share of the Servicing Universe is Shrinking

decliningThe number of first-lien mortgage loans serviced by eight national banks, which comprise about 41 percent of all outstanding residential mortgages in the country, has declined every quarter since Q4 2013, according to the OCC Mortgage Metrics Report for the fourth quarter of 2015 released Wednesday.

As of the end of Q4 2015, those eight national banks (alphabetically)—Bank of America, JPMorgan Chase, CIT Bank (formerly OneWest), Citibank, HSBC, PNC, U.S. Bank, and Wells Fargo)—were servicing approximately 21.47 million first-lien residential mortgage loans nationwide. This number represented a decline of more than one million from the year-ago quarter (23.1 million for the end of Q4 2014) and nearly three and a half million from two years earlier (24.9 million for the end of Q4 2013). The number of first-lien loans serviced by the banks has now declined every quarter for eight straight quarters.

The aggregate outstanding balance of those first-lien loans serviced by the eight banks as of the end of Q4 2015 was $3.67 trillion and has also declined every quarter for eight straight quarters. At the end of Q4 2013, the aggregate balance was $4.2 trillion.

3-30 OCC graphThe good news for the servicers is that more of the first-lien mortgages that remain in their portfolios are performing. According to the OCC, 94.1 percent of the loans in the portfolio were current and performing as of the end of Q4, nearly a full percentage point higher than the year-ago quarter (93.2 percent as of the end of Q4 2014).

The foreclosure metrics were also down in Q4. Servicers at the eight banks initiated 63,387 new foreclosures during the quarter, which is a decline of 16 percent year-over-year. The number of home forfeiture actions, which include short sales, deeds-in-lieu of foreclosure, or foreclosure sales, was down by 23 percent year-over-year in Q4 (down to 38,112).

According to the OCC, servicers at the banks completed 35,118 modifications during Q4, and 92 percent of those were “combination modifications”—or modifications that included multiple actions that affect the affordability and sustainability of the loan. Also, out of those 35,118 modifications, 87 percent of them reduced the loan’s pre-modification monthly payment.

Click here to view the OCC’s complete report.

About Author: Brian Honea

Brian Honea's writing and editing career spans nearly two decades across many forms of media. He served as sports editor for two suburban newspaper chains in the DFW area and has freelanced for such publications as the Yahoo! Contributor Network, Dallas Home Improvement magazine, and the Dallas Morning News. He has written four non-fiction sports books, the latest of which, The Life of Coach Chuck Curtis, was published by the TCU Press in December 2014. A lifelong Texan, Brian received his master's degree from Amberton University in Garland.
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