The Federal Housing Administration's Mutual Mortgage Insurance Fund ended fiscal year 2010 in better financial shape than its auditors had expected, and the agency projected a peak in foreclosure claims next summer.

FHA's total capital resources grew by $1.5 billion during fiscal year 2010, which ended Sept. 30, to $33.3 billion.

Independent auditors had projected that total capital resources would decline by about $5 billion, FHA said in its quarterly report to Congress on Thursday.

During the fiscal fourth quarter, FHA paid a total of $4.24 billion in claims, including more than 28,800 foreclosure claims and nearly 4,300 preforeclosure, or short-sale, claims. This was up from $3.39 billion in the fiscal third quarter. Despite the increase in claims in the fourth quarter, the claim total for the fiscal year was 14% lower than predicted.

Net losses on claims stayed within the range of actuarial predictions for fiscal year 2010.

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