Fitch: Tough Times Lie Ahead for Large U.S. Mortgage Servicers

NEW YORK--()--Link to Fitch Ratings' Report: U.S. RMBS Servicer Handbook (Servicing At A Glance)
https://www.fitchratings.com/creditdesk/reports/report_frame.cfm?rpt_id=885069

Many of the largest U.S. bank and non-bank mortgage servicers saw their portfolios decline in the first quarter of 2016, presaging a tougher period ahead as borrowers find more opportunities to refinance their mortgages, according to the latest U.S. RMBS servicer handbook from Fitch Ratings.

Generally large servicers had a challenging quarter, though some entities were able to grow their portfolios through increased agency activities, subservicing and third-party relationships. In particular, Roundpoint Mortgage Servicing Corporation evidenced more than 13% growth in loans serviced, while Cenlar FSB, Specialized Loan Servicing and Shellpoint also demonstrated solid growth, ranging from 8% to 5% during this period.

That said, mortgage servicers are facing a difficult interest rate environment for the remainder of 2016. Add in the far-reaching impact of the recent Brexit vote and challenges could be magnified. Sustained low rates can impact servicer portfolios, according to Managing Director Roelof Slump. 'Maintaining portfolio size can be an important factor as mortgage servicing is a scale business,' said Slump. 'Servicers that do not have associated origination platforms and service mostly performing loans are most exposed to portfolio runoff.' Also, smaller servicers can quickly see growth and financial benefit by being involved in new areas while it takes more to move the needle among the largest servicers.

In addition to the servicing portfolio size changes, highlights in the Handbook also include:

--The percentage of loans in a delinquent status has decreased for banks and nonbanks;

--The first quarter showed an increase in loan modifications by the banks;

--Loans per employee counts are increasing at the banks, decreasing at the nonbanks.

The Handbook includes a description of all Fitch-rated servicers, their current servicer ratings and key rating drivers, portfolio size and key attributes, important trends, links to the full RMBS servicer reports, and Fitch analyst contact information. The portfolio data incorporates the latest quarterly updates from the servicers. Fitch updates the Handbook on a quarterly basis. These updates include rating changes, any changes to key rating drivers, and portfolio size and attribute data.

The Handbook is available at 'www.fitchratings.com' or by clicking the below link.

Additional information is available at 'www.fitchratings.com'.

ALL FITCH CREDIT RATINGS ARE SUBJECT TO CERTAIN LIMITATIONS AND DISCLAIMERS. PLEASE READ THESE LIMITATIONS AND DISCLAIMERS BY FOLLOWING THIS LINK: HTTP://FITCHRATINGS.COM/UNDERSTANDINGCREDITRATINGS. IN ADDITION, RATING DEFINITIONS AND THE TERMS OF USE OF SUCH RATINGS ARE AVAILABLE ON THE AGENCY'S PUBLIC WEBSITE 'WWW.FITCHRATINGS.COM'. PUBLISHED RATINGS, CRITERIA AND METHODOLOGIES ARE AVAILABLE FROM THIS SITE AT ALL TIMES. FITCH'S CODE OF CONDUCT, CONFIDENTIALITY, CONFLICTS OF INTEREST, AFFILIATE FIREWALL, COMPLIANCE AND OTHER RELEVANT POLICIES AND PROCEDURES ARE ALSO AVAILABLE FROM THE 'CODE OF CONDUCT' SECTION OF THIS SITE. FITCH MAY HAVE PROVIDED ANOTHER PERMISSIBLE SERVICE TO THE RATED ENTITY OR ITS RELATED THIRD PARTIES. DETAILS OF THIS SERVICE FOR RATINGS FOR WHICH THE LEAD ANALYST IS BASED IN AN EU-REGISTERED ENTITY CAN BE FOUND ON THE ENTITY SUMMARY PAGE FOR THIS ISSUER ON THE FITCH WEBSITE.

Contacts

Fitch Ratings
Roelof Slump, +1-212-908-0705
Managing Director
Fitch Ratings, Inc.
33 Whitehall Street
New York, NY, 10004
or
Harper Williams, +1-212-908-0500
Associate Analyst
or
Media Relations:
Sandro Scenga, +1-212-908-0278
New York
sandro.scenga@fitchratings.com

Contacts

Fitch Ratings
Roelof Slump, +1-212-908-0705
Managing Director
Fitch Ratings, Inc.
33 Whitehall Street
New York, NY, 10004
or
Harper Williams, +1-212-908-0500
Associate Analyst
or
Media Relations:
Sandro Scenga, +1-212-908-0278
New York
sandro.scenga@fitchratings.com