RMBS Loan Losses Steepest in Spain’s Tourist Regions

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In Spain, the places that tourists prefer are where mortgages are most susceptible to a particular risk.

Moody’s Investors Service found that residential mortgage-backeds with collateral in Spanish tourist regions suffered the highest losses on repossessed assets.

For now the agency isn’t downgrading any deals as a result, but it did characterize this finding as a credit negative.

The geographies most popular with tourists are the Mediterranean coast, Andalucia and the Canary Islands.

The agency compared the prices of repossessed properties sold between 2010 and 2013 to the regional house price decline from the peak reported by Spain’s statistics bureau INE. “The results show that repossessed property prices were significantly lower than the corresponding decline in the INE regional house price index since Q1 2007,” Moody’s said.

The agency added that what might account for this difference was the forced sale of these properties and the likelihood that the conditions of these homes deteriorated throughout the process.

Despite Moody’s conclusion that tourist areas saw steeper price declines than what is indicated by INE’s data, the loss severities on mortgage debt linked to repossessed properties remain within the agency’s assumptions for defaulted loans. So far those severities average 71% across the Mediterranean coast, the Canary Islands and Andalucia.

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