February HECM endorsements grew 5% while case numbers issued shrank, but what we discover in this month’s HECM Originators report is that third party originators (TPOs) brokering to wholesale lenders were responsible for all the growth (+15.1%) while direct lenders with retail operations shrank in the month (-2.7%).
This is the second month in a row we’ve seen TPOs (wholesale) outperforming direct lenders (retail) and the third month in the past four. Even more interesting, all three have come in growth months for wholesale, whereas in the past year it was the lesser victory of declining less than retail.
Put these months together and we have wholesale surging from 1,612 loans in October to 2,547 in Feb, an increase of 58% while retail dropped -5.3% over the same time period. These swings are in the context of a much bigger shift in the past two years as wholesale has declined significantly from early 2010, but the bounce back is quite significant in size thus far.
Next month we’ll have to see which channel performed in the face of a sharp drop in endorsements for March.
A note on chart methodology: The chart above is indexed to October 2011 for both retail and wholesale volume, so a reading of 95 would mean that volume in that month was 5% lower than October 2011.
Check out the full report below, including rankings of all HECM originators including TPOs. Click the image below to access the full report: