CFPB: Closed-End Mortgage Loans Increased in 2020

Closed-end mortgage originations increased 65.2% in 2020, driven primarily by an increase in mortgage refinance loans, according to a new review of Home Mortgage Disclosure Act data released by the Consumer Financial Protection Bureau today. Refinance loans increased 149.1% from their 2019 level, the bureau found. Meanwhile, the number of open-end line-of-credit originations fell 16.6%.

Unsurprisingly, home purchase origination volumes fell across the board in April and May 2020 as the COVID-19 pandemic began, before picking up again in June. Black borrowers’ share of home-purchase loans increased from 6.8% in 2018 to 7.3% in 2020, while the share for Hispanic white borrowers rose from 8.9% in 2018 to 9.1% in 2020 and the share for non-Hispanic white borrowers dipped to 59.1% from 62% in 2018.

A total of 4,475 financial institutions reported 22.7 million applications and 14.5 million originations. The CFPB observed that “the total number of applications and originations increased substantially in 2020,” despite the fact the number of total reporters fell 18.8% as a result of changes to the HMDA reporting threshold.