Signs of Mortgage Lending 'Loosening' in U.S.

Signs of Mortgage Lending 'Loosening' in U.S.

Residential News » North America Residential News Edition | By WPJ Staff | August 5, 2013 1:04 PM ET

New data from the Mortgage Bankers Association suggests mortgage lenders in the U.S. may be loosening restrictions on credit.

Mortgage credit availability increased in July by 2.2 percent from June, according to the association's Mortgage Credit Availability Index (MCAI). The index increased for the fifth consecutive month to 112.3. The index was benchmarked at 100 in March 2012, with a lower number suggested lending is tightening and a higher indicating a loosening of credit.

The rise in the index in July was "primarily driven by increases in product offerings that allow cash-out refinancing, and some increase in offerings for borrowers with higher LTVs (loan-to-value), or lower credit scores."

Mortgage rates have been fluctuating in recent weeks as the market tries to determine the course of the economy and Federal Reserve policies. 

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