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Mortgages in foreclosure tie record high: MBA

Mortgages in foreclosure tie record high: MBA (by Amy Hoak)

CHICAGO (MarketWatch) -- The percentage of mortgages in foreclosure tied a record high in the fourth quarter of 2010, even though mortgage delinquencies hit their lowest level since the end of 2008, the Mortgage Bankers Association reported on Thursday. The percentage of mortgage loans somewhere in the foreclosure process was 4.63%, up from 4.39% in the third quarter and 4.58% in the fourth quarter of 2009. The delinquency rate, which includes mortgages that are at least one month past due but not yet in foreclosure, fell to a seasonally adjusted 8.22% of all loans outstanding, down from 9.13% in the third quarter and 9.47% in the fourth quarter of 2009. "As we had predicted last quarter, the percent of loans in the foreclosure process increased in the fourth quarter, largely due to the foreclosure paperwork issues that were being addressed in September and October," said Mike Fratantoni, MBA's vice president for single family research, in a news release.