The serious delinquency rate on Federal Housing Administration (FHA) loans has risen a full percentage point over four months to 9.3% in November.
The new November FHA Single-Family Outlook report shows that 689,350 FHA-insured loans are 90-days or more past due, compared to 589,900 in July when the serious delinquency rate was 8.3%.
So far, FHA's stubbornly high delinquency rates have been blamed mostly on "legacy loans" that were originated during the last years of the housing boom (2006-2008).
But now officials are acknowledging the natural "seasoning" of the "massive" fiscal year 2009 and FY 2010 books of business is impacting delinquency rates -- along with a slowdown in FHA lending.
"That juxtaposition will, by itself, lead to higher reported delinquency rates for a couple of years," an FHA official said.
"The 2009 and 2010 cohorts are performing very well at this stage of their seasoning, when compared with the 2007 and 2008 vintages. There is no evidence of a return to the weakness seen in those books," the FHA official added.
FHA loan endorsements in fiscal years 2009 and 2010 hit highs of $330 billion and $298 billion respectfully. Endorsements slowed to $218 billion in FY 2011 that ended September 30.
In the first quarter of FY 2011, FHA endorsed $72 billion in single-family loans compared to $45.6 billion in the fourth quarter.
The new Outlook report shows that FHA originations remain lackluster despite the recent increase in refinancing activity.
Lenders originated $15.8 billion in FHA-insured loans in November, including $5.1 billion in refinancings.
In August, FHA endorsements totaled $17.4 billion with $3.3 billion in refinancings.