As is generally the case, UBS Warburg topped the manager activity rankings for both agency and non-agency MBS, according to final results from Thomson Financial's RMBS 2003 first-half league tables.

UBS edged out its competitors in the first half of this year with $64.03 billion in proceeds and a 14.1% market share. However, the perennial leader did not top its performance over the same period last year. In the first half of 2002, UBS outpaced other firms by a bigger market share -16.6%. However, it sold less last year with proceeds of $53.68 billion in the first half of 2002.

More interesting is the case of second-place Goldman Sachs, which rose to second from fifth place for the same period last year. Goldman now has a 13.3% market share compared with only 11.6% in 2002. Goldman sold $60.41 billion in the first half of 2003, while only selling $37.51 billion over the same period last year. Goldman also topped Thomson's rankings for RMBS manager activity for agency issuers only, gaining a 15% market share with $48.20 billion in proceeds.

"We've dedicated substantial resources to our entire global mortgage business over the last few years," said Jonathan Sobel, managing director and head of the mortgage department at Goldman Sachs. "Our improved league table standing is a reflection of the growth of our franchise."

He added that Goldman manages its business to meet the needs of its clients, and not for league table standings, so the actual standings could fluctuate over time.

Other notable players in this year's leagues are Morgan Stanley and Banc of America Securities LLC.

The rise of MS

Quite significantly, Morgan Stanley rose to eighth place with a 7.6% market share and $34.70 billion in proceeds for the first half of 2003. Compare a No.17 ranking for the first half of last year, with merely $502.3 million in proceeds and a .2% market share. The firm's position in the rankings for RMBS managers for agency issuers only also took a dramatic twist. From having no presence last year, Morgan Stanley ranked No. 5 this year with $28.20 billion in proceeds and an 8.8% market share.

Sources said that Morgan Stanley has also been beefing up its MBS efforts lately.

For instance, last month the firm launched a whole loan conduit on the CMO side to purchase non-conforming mortgages such as jumbo and Alt-A loans.

Aside from this, Morgan Stanley has also made some key hires. The firm recently hired Sami Boustany to head its agency-backed adjustable rate trading effort. He was hired from UBS Warburg. The firm is currently looking for hires in this area. Aside from Boustany, the firm has also brought aboard Frank Palotta from Credit Suisse First Boston to be part of the sales coverage of mortgage originators.

The top 10

Meanwhile, Banc of America is in fifth place for the first half of 2003 with an 8.6% market share, selling $38.92 billion. This is compared to a year ago when it ranked eighth with a 5.4% market share and $17.52 billion in proceeds.

Lehman Brothers dropped to the No. 7 slot with an 8.3% market share over the last six months, compared with 11.9% over the same period in 2002. Lehman sold $37.88 billion this year compared with $38.51 in the first half of 2002.

Bear Stearns & Co. grabbed the No. 3 spot in this year's rankings as it sold $50.73 billion and had an 11.1% market share. CSFB was fourth with $41.82 billion in proceeds and a 9.2% market share. Citigroup maintained its ranking from last year at sixth place, selling $38.53 billion (8.5% market share).

Royal Bank of Scotland Group dropped two places from last year to the ninth spot this year with $26.94 billion in proceeds and a 5.9% market share. Rounding out the top 10 list, Merrill Lynch & Co. came down a notch from last year with $19.15 billion in proceeds (4.2% market share).

CMBS results

In CMBS, CSFB led the league tables for manager activity with $6.55 billion, taking a lion's share of the market with an 18.1% market share. Morgan Stanley is a not-so-close second, selling $3.95 billion (10.9% market share). Deutsche Bank AG ranked third with 10.1% market share and $3.64 billion in proceeds. Goldman Sachs, selling $3.47 billion, ranked fourth with a 9.6% market share. Lehman Brothers rounded out the top five with $2.65 billion in proceeds and a 7.3% market share.

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