A few analysts were worried when Countrywide Credit Industries said runoff from its servicing portfolio amounted to 50% at an annualized rate in October.

The figure dropped to 46% in November, though, and Sy Jacobs, an analyst at Alex. Brown & Sons, Baltimore, is expecting further improvement in coming months. "We are quite encouraged by the November data," he wrote in a recent report. "We had expected runoff to remain at record levels, and it began to fall."

Mr. Jacobs also noted that Countrywide's pipeline of loans in process fell slightly in November, to $9.5 million from $9.6 million. He took this as a positive sign because he had expected the pipeline to "begin a sharp descent."

The analyst kept his "strong buy" rating on Countrywide.

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