Countrywide Credit Industries reported a drop in loan funding and a smaller pipeline in September, confirming earlier indications that loan volume is slowing.

The Pasadena, Calif.-based mortgage lender reported that it funded $2.7 billion in mortgage loans last month, 11% lower than the $3 billion it originated in September 1995.

Further declines are likely for Countrywide, the nation's second-largest originator and servicer of mortgages, because the pipeline at the end of September totaled $4.2 billion, 21% below the total of $5.3 billion at the end of September 1995.

Despite the overall slowdown in loan production, purchase loan funding inched up slightly to $2.1 billion, from $2 billion. Refinance activity was much lower at only 23% of fundings, compared to 35% in September 1995.

Originations for subprime loans and home equity loans were up significantly from the year-earlier period.

The decrease in originations was mitigated by a rise in the company's servicing portfolio. Countrywide's servicing assets at the end of September totaled $150 billion, up 16% from the same period last year.

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