Redwood Empire Bancorp announced that mortgage loan originations for January at Allied Bank, its wholly owned subsidiary, were $141.4 million, compared with $16.1 million a year earlier.

"The dramatic increase in origination volume is a reflection of the much stronger mortgage lending environment this year compared with last," said Patrick W. Kilkenny, president and chief executive. He cited relatively low interest rates, as well as Redwood's efforts "to improve our wholesale mortgage lending activities in Northern California."

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