Citi Reports It Helped 130,000 Avoid Foreclosure in Third Quarter

Distressed MortgagesCitigroup helped about 130,000 homeowners avoid foreclosure on mortgages valued at more than $20 billion in the third quarter, Citi reported today.
Citi’s loss mitigation results outnumbered completed foreclosures by more than 15 to one, nearly four times the rate it reported in the third quarter of 2008, the bank said in its latest quarterly mortgage report. The bank said it modified 82 percent more mortgages in the third quarter than in the second quarter, and 85 percent compared to 2008 figues.
Citibank’s credit card division has taken some heat over recent weeks for raising card rates as high as 29.99 percent ahead of reform laws set to take effect in February. But Citi is virtually the only major bank to release regularly reports on efforts to help distressed borrowers stay out of foreclosure.
“We recognize the difficulties that homeowners face in the current economic environment and our number one priority is to help keep homeownership a reality for our customers who find themselves in financial distress,” said Sanjiv Das, president and CEO of CitiMortgage, the Missouri-based division that manages most of its $751 billion mortgage business.
As of October 31, Citi begun trial mortgage modifications for 40 percent of eligible borrowers in the Home Affordable Modification Program (HAMP), the highest proportion by the largest U.S. commercial bank mortgage servicers.
In the third quarter, Citi processed nearly 175,000 mortgage applications, valued at $25 billion. It originated about $14 billion in mortgage loans, assisting more than 63,000 Americans either purchase a home or obtain refinancing.
Across the industry, the mortgage delinquency rate reached a record 9.64 percent of all loans outstanding for the third quarter of this year, according to the Mortgage Bankers Association.
That compares to 9.24 percent in the second quarter of 2009, and 6.99 percent in the third quarter of last year. The delinquency rate breaks the record set last quarter.  The records are based on MBA data dating back to 1972.
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