HUD Revision Drives '89 Tally Upward

A hundred billion here, a hundred billion there, and pretty soon you're talking real money.

The Department of Housing and Urban Development has raised its estimate of 1989 home-mortgage originations to $452.9 billion, up $100.9 billion from its previous tally. That brings the 1989 total to virtually the same level as the originations that HUD recently reported for 1990.

HUD, the official counter of originations, is revising its data for past years to reflect a change in survey methodology that was implemented for the 1990 survey. HUD said the new 1989 total is subject to still further revision.

|I Think We've Restored the Credibility'

Some mortgage analysts have criticized the revised agency numbers as overstated and out of proportion to housing sales. But John Dickie, a HUD economist, said he is pleased with the changes.

"The numbers seem to be hanging together," he said. "I think we've restored the credibility of the survey."

The revisions suggest that commercial banks' share of originations climbed to 33% in 1990 from 27% in 1989, while savings and loans saw their share drop to 27% from 30%. Mortgage companies led the field, but experienced a drop to 36% from 37%.

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