Loan Performance and Negative Home Equity in the Nonprime Mortgage Market

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Correspondence issued by the Government Accountability Office with an abstract that begins "As GAO reported to Congress in July 2009, the number of nonprime mortgage originations (including subprime and Alt-A loans) grew rapidly from 2000 through 2006, a period during which average house prices appreciated dramatically. In dollar terms, the nonprime share of mortgage originations rose from about 12 percent ($125 billion) in 2000 to approximately 34 percent ($1 trillion) in 2006. These mortgages have been associated with what was subsequently recognized as a speculative housing bubble. As house prices subsequently fell, the subprime and Alt-A market segments contracted sharply, ... continued below

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United States. Government Accountability Office. December 16, 2009.

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Description

Correspondence issued by the Government Accountability Office with an abstract that begins "As GAO reported to Congress in July 2009, the number of nonprime mortgage originations (including subprime and Alt-A loans) grew rapidly from 2000 through 2006, a period during which average house prices appreciated dramatically. In dollar terms, the nonprime share of mortgage originations rose from about 12 percent ($125 billion) in 2000 to approximately 34 percent ($1 trillion) in 2006. These mortgages have been associated with what was subsequently recognized as a speculative housing bubble. As house prices subsequently fell, the subprime and Alt-A market segments contracted sharply, and very few nonprime originations were made after mid-2007. Borrowers who had obtained nonprime mortgages earlier in the decade increasingly fell behind on their mortgage payments, helping to push default and foreclosure rates to historical highs. Economic conditions and a weak housing market have contributed to the increase in troubled loans. In particular, falling house prices have left many borrowers in a negative equity position--that is, their mortgage balances exceed the current value of their homes. Negative equity makes borrowers more vulnerable to foreclosure by, among other factors, limiting their ability to sell or refinance their homes in the event they cannot stay current on their mortgage payments. To inform congressional decision making about efforts to address problems in the mortgage market, Congress requested that GAO examine the evolution and condition of the market for nonprime loans. On July 28, 2009, GAO provided Congress with an interim report on certain characteristics of nonprime loans and borrowers, and the performance of nonprime mortgages originated from 2000 through 2007 (the last year in which substantial numbers of nonprime mortgages were made) as of March 31, 2009. This report (1) provides information on the performance of these nonprime loans as of June 30, 2009, and describes forecasts made by others of future loan performance; and (2) examines the extent of negative home equity among nonprime borrowers in selected metropolitan areas and nationwide. In addition, this report describes the preliminary results of GAO's analysis of the demographic characteristics of nonprime borrowers--including race and ethnicity--whose loans originated in 2005. GAO identified these characteristics by merging loan-level records from two data sources. This report also provides supplemental information on the performance of nonprime mortgages by annual loan cohort, product type, Census division, state, and congressional district."

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Government Accountability Office Reports

The U.S. Government Accountability Office (GAO) is an independent, nonpartisan agency that works for the U.S. Congress investigating how the federal government spends taxpayers' money. Its goal is to increase accountability and improve the performance of the federal government. The Government Accountability Office Reports Collection consists of over 13,000 documents on a variety of topics ranging from fiscal issues to international affairs.

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  • December 16, 2009

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  • June 12, 2014, 7:50 p.m.

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United States. Government Accountability Office. Loan Performance and Negative Home Equity in the Nonprime Mortgage Market, text, December 16, 2009; Washington D.C.. (digital.library.unt.edu/ark:/67531/metadc300969/: accessed December 13, 2017), University of North Texas Libraries, Digital Library, digital.library.unt.edu; crediting UNT Libraries Government Documents Department.