STRUGGLE FOR SURVIVAL

WITH VOLUME SHRINKING, the home-loan industry has rushed to prop up volume - and dwindling margins - with a variety of new or recycled products: subprime loans; 125% loan-to-value models; reverse mortgages; "grandparent" loans, and an array of hybrids between fixed and adjustable rates. Are the niche markets here to stay? Individual profitability is the key. Page 2A

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