Housing Boom Over: Mortgage Defaults Start to Spread

Wednesday, March 07, 2007
From the Wall Street Journal:

The mortgage market has been roiled by a sharp increase in bad loans made to borrowers with weak credit. Now there are signs that the pain is spreading upward.

At issue are mortgages made to people who fall in the gray area between "prime" (borrowers considered the best credit risks) and "subprime" (borrowers considered the greatest credit risks). A record $400 billion of these midlevel loans -- which are known in the industry as "Alt-A" mortgages -- were originated last year, up from $85 billion in 2003, according to Inside Mortgage Finance, a trade publication. Alt-A loans accounted for roughly 16% of mortgage originations last year and subprime loans an additional 24%.

Continue reading about the housing bust here...
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