by Bill McBride on 2/19/2010 12:11:00 PM
Friday, February 19, 2010
Much was made this morning about the decline in the 30 day delinquency "bucket" (percent of loans between 30 and 60 days delinquent). Hopefully this graph will put the problem in perspective ...
Click on graph for larger image in new window.
Loans 30 days delinquent are still elevated, and still above the levels in 2007 - and at about the level of early 2008 - when prices were falling sharply.
The 60 day bucket also declined in Q4, but it is still above the levels of 2008.
As MBA Chief Economist Jay Brinkmann noted, the 90 day and 'in foreclosure' rates are at record levels. Obviously the lenders have been slow to start foreclosure proceedings - and the 90+ day delinquent bucket is now very full. And lenders have been slow to actually foreclose - and the 'in foreclosure' bucket is at record levels.
What impacts prices are distress sales; homes coming out of the 'in foreclosure' bucket without being cured. Since the lenders slowed foreclosures to a trickle, prices have stabilized or even increased slightly in some areas.
But these record levels of long term delinquencies are why Brinkmann cautioned about house prices. This morning he pointed out on the conference call that there are a record 4.5 million homes seriously delinquent or in foreclosure. The loans on some of these homes will be cured - perhaps by HAMP modifications of by other lender modification programs - but many of these homes will go to foreclosure or be sold as short sales putting pressure on house prices.