The cloud over California's mortgage lenders grew even darker Wednesday when the Mortgage Bankers Association of America!s national delinquency survey revealed a sharp increase in delinquency and foreclosures rates in the state. But mortgage lenders in the Golden State say they are, nonetheless, optimistic.

The statistics don't seem to give them reason to be. The MBA said that 11 of 13 Western states reported declines in delinquency rates from the previous year. But California's delinquency rate stood at 3.67% as of June 30, up 13 basis points from the same day in 1992.

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