Commercial and multifamily mortgage delinquency rates fell in the first quarter of 2012 for most of the top investor groups except one: commercial mortgage-backed securities.

According to figures compiled by the Mortgage Bankers Association and released Tuesday, loans included in commercial mortgage-backed securities had an 8.85% delinquency rate at the end of March, compared to 8.56% at yearend. However, a year ago 8.86% of loans included in these securities were delinquent.

The delinquency rate for mortgage-backed securities covers mortgages that are 30 or more days late, including those in foreclosure and real-estate owned properties.

Besides loans held by Freddie Mac, which saw its 60-day or more delinquency rate increase by a meager 0.01% to 0.23%, all other investor types were down quarter-over-quarter.

Multifamily loans held by Fannie Mae that were at least 60 days late in payments dropped to 0.37% in the first quarter from 0.59% at Dec. 31.

For both government-sponsored enterprises, their delinquency rates include loans that are in foreclosure, but not REO. 

Meanwhile, banks and thrifts reported improvement in their 90-day delinquency rates for the sixth straight quarter. The delinquency rate for this investor group is now at 3.44%, compared to 4.41% in the third quarter of 2010.

Delinquency rates also declined for life insurance companies for the third straight quarter to 0.14%, which is the same rate from the same time period last year. Life insurance companies track their delinquency rates by assessing loans that are not paid in 60 or more days, including those in foreclosure but not REO.

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