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Mortgage Credit Availability in the U.S. Dips in July

The Mortgage Bankers Association is reporting that U.S. mortgage credit availability decreased in July 2019, according to their most recent Mortgage Credit Availability Index (MCAI).

The MCAI fell by 0.4 percent to 189.0 in July. A decline in the MCAI indicates that lending standards are tightening, while increases in the index are indicative of loosening credit. The index was benchmarked to 100 in March 2012. The Conventional MCAI increased 0.1 percent, while the Government MCAI decreased by 1.0 percent. Of the component indices of the Conventional MCAI, the Jumbo MCAI increased by 0.7 percent, and the Conforming MCAI fell by 0.8 percent.

“Credit availability in July decreased overall, driven by declines in the conforming and government indices. Conditions tightened some for borrowers with high loan-to-value ratios and lower credit scores,” said Joel Kan, MBA’s Associate Vice President of Economic and Industry Forecasting. “One outlier was the jumbo index, which increased to its highest level since the inception of this survey in 2012.”

Added Kan, “The decline in the government index resulted from a pullback by investors in government high-balance and streamlined refinance products.”

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