Mortgage credit availability increased slightly in August compared with July, rising 0.7% to a score of 180.2 on the Mortgage Bankers Association’s (MBA) Mortgage Credit Availability Index (MCAI).
The index was benchmarked to a score of 100 in March 2012. A decrease in the MCAI indicates that lending standards are tightening, while increases are indicative of loosening credit.
Credit for conforming loans loosened the most in August, up 1.6% compared with July, as per the index. Credit for conventional loans increased 1.5%, while credit for jumbo and government-backed loans increased 1.4% and 0.1%, respectively.
“Mortgage credit availability increased slightly in August, driven by the expansion of credit among conforming and agency jumbo programs,” explains Lynn Fisher, vice president of research and economics for the MBA, in a release. “Following the same pattern as last month, agency eligible adjustable rate mortgage loan programs continued to be updated in August to allow for higher loan to value ratios, effectively increasing the availability of credit.”
The MCAI analyzes data from Ellie Mae’s AllRegs Market Clarity business information tool.