Mortgage credit availability increased 0.4% in February compared with January to reach a score of 177.8 on the Mortgage Bankers Association’s (MBA) Mortgage Credit Availability Index.
“Credit availability loosened slightly in February due to the net result of two countervailing movements,” explains Lynn Fisher, vice president of research and economics for the MBA, in a statement. “The supply of credit increased as more investors offered affordable low down payment mortgages and streamlined documentation loans guaranteed by the Federal Housing Administration and the Veterans Administration.
“However, the impact of that increase on the overall index was partially offset by the first downturn in the availability of jumbo credit in a year due to the consolidation of some jumbo programs,” Fisher adds.
Looking at the sub-indices, credit availability for government-backed loans increased 2.3% compared with January. Credit availability for conforming loans increased 0.1%; credit availability for conventional loans decreased 2.2%; and credit availability for jumbo loans decreased 4.4%.