DAMAGE CONTROL: New mortgages fell sharply at FirstBank in Lakewood, Colo., partly because of homeowners "hesitancy" about "moving and purchasing" new homes, regional exec Patrick Brady (left) says. The drop-off at Fifth Third has forced the Cincinnati bank to "rationalize our mortgage business lines" with cost cuts, CFO Tayfun Tuzun says.
Homeowners who took advantage of the refinancing boom aren't buying new houses, because it would mean taking on higher-rate loans. That's a problem for banks already reporting huge declines in mortgage revenue.
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