Citibank's strategy to increase its presence in the jumbo mortgage market appears to be working — applications in the sector are up 60% in the past 60 days, according to sources familiar with the lender's operations.

Citi has not revealed how many of these mortgages have been approved yet. In April, the New York banking giant made the offering of jumbo mortgages a top priority for its U.S. retail branches — and it came at a time when it stopped funding jumbos through loan brokers.

It also cut the interest rate to make its Jumbos more competitive. On July 2, the interest rate on a Citibank Jumbo mortgage was 5%. Citibank is offering reduced rates nationwide but the jump in applications is coming mainly from New York and California.

Citi is currently focused on offering jumbos to existing customers, but other consumers can apply through a branch office or a call center.

In the first quarter, Citigroup originated $10.3 billion in residential mortgages through its North American retail banking units.

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