August was the best month of the year so far for new business at the country's private mortgage insurers, with $6.4 billion of primary new insurance written.

There was also a slight month-over-month improvement in the cure/default ratio, according to data released last week by the Mortgage Insurance Cos. of America, an association of private mortgage insurers.

August's volume tops the $5.8 billion originated in July; there was $5.8 billion of volume in August 2009 as well.

August was also the high-water mark so far for the number of applications received, at 39,503, up from 32,829 in July and 35,358 in August 2009.

The cure/default ratio of 90.9% is an improvement over July's 81.4% ratio. Last August, the ratio was a mere 57.6%.

There were 58,094 cures and 63,882 defaults in August. It was the third month in a row where there have been more new defaults than cures.

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