The balance of delinquent commercial real estate loans bundled as bonds rose to $37.93 billion last month, a fivefold increase during the year, according to Realpoint LLC.
The month's $5.38 billion rise was driven in large part by the "late" status of a $3.5 billion portion of a loan to Extended Stay Inc., the Horsham, Pa., credit rating company said in a report Wednesday.
The delinquency rate stands at 4.7% and could approach 9% by June, Realpoint said.
As several large loans continue to show signs of "stress and default," and borrowers struggle to refinance maturing debt, delinquencies could rise, the rating company said. The default of a $3 billion loan on the Stuyvesant Town-Peter Cooper Village apartment complex in New York, already classified as troubled, could contribute to a delinquency rate of more than 7% by March, it said.
Yields on top-rated bonds backed by skyscraper, shopping mall and apartment loans have fallen as much 8 percentage points from March highs, to 4 percentage points more than Treasuries, as U.S. government programs helped spur demand, according to data from Barclays Capital.