Milliman Inc., a global consulting and actuarial firm, has shared the fourth-quarter 2022 results of the Milliman Mortgage Default Index (MMDI), which shows the latest monthly estimate of the lifetime default risk of U.S.-backed mortgages.
Between the third quarter and fourth quarter, default risk for government-sponsored enterprise (GSE) acquisitions remained steady at 3.53%. This means that for mortgage loans originated in Q4, the expectation is that 3.53% will become delinquent (180 days or more) over their lifetimes.
For Q4, mortgage originations were at their lowest levels since 2019 (pre-pandemic), with refinance originations at their lowest levels since 2014, when Milliman started tracking this data. This is the fourth consecutive quarter that mortgage originations have decreased.
Looking at the components of default risk, borrower risk decreased from 1.61% in Q3 2022 to 1.57% in Q4. Mortgage loans during this quarter had better FICO scores and a better loan-to-value (LTV) ratio, compared to recent quarters. Economic risk inched up from 1.9% in 2022 Q3 to 1.96% in 2022 Q4 overall, though newer originations may face a steeper increase.
“The slight uptick in economic risk from 2022 Q3 to Q4 was offset by a decrease in borrower and underwriting risk, leading to the overall default risk remaining flat,” says Jonathan Glowacki, a principal at Milliman and author of the MMDI. “We also expect to see a drop in future home price growth, which is contributing to a fairly sharp increase in economic risk for newer mortgage loans.”