Alive and Kicking – Wholesale Leaders February 2011

We noticed last month that broker/wholesale channel performed much better than retail/direct in a down month for the industry overall, and now we can remove that last qualifier. Broker/wholesale outperformed again in February, up 16.2% compared to just 0.6% growth for retail/direct.

Of course we don’t really expect brokers to gain back all the ground they’ve lost in the past year given all the regulatory headwinds, but they’re not dead yet despite the many obituaries already written. We also suspect given the relative weakness in top 10 lenders retail business in March that we’ll probably see brokers make it a clean sweep of growth for the quarter when we see next month’s Wholesale Leaders report.

Brokers comprised 40.8% of all endorsements in February, down considerably from last year (55.5%) but up dramatically from the low of 33.7% in December.

Urban Financial Group (owned by Knight Capital) is notable as the only Top 10 lender that has grown their broker/wholesale business in the past 12 months, a tall order given the declines wholesale has seen over that same span.

Click the image below to access the full report:

Wholesale Leaders