Mortgage credit availability increased 0.6% in June to reach an index score of 115.8 on the Mortgage Bankers Association's (MBA) Mortgage Credit Availability Index (MCAI) – up from 115.1 in May.
A decline in the MCAI indicates that lending standards are tightening, while increases in the index are indicative of loosening credit. The index was benchmarked to 100 in March 2012.
The MBA attributes the slight loosening of credit to recent minor adjustments in the Federal Housing Administration and Department of Veterans Affairs programs with respect to minimum credit scores and maximum loan-to-value ratios.
The MBA recently expanded the MCAI so that it now gives a perspective on credit availability going back 10 years. The expanded historical series covers 2004 through 2010 and was created to provide historical context to the current series by showing how credit availability has changed over the past decade.