Private mortgage insurer MGIC today reported a net loss of $34.4 million for the first quarter, compared to net income of $92.4 million for the same quarter a year earlier.
Chairman Curt. S. Culver blamed the loss on an increase in the number of delinquent loans and foreclosures as a result of home price declines, especially in hard-hit areas like California and Florida.
New mortgage insurance written during the quarter totaled $19.1 billion, compared to $12.7 billion a year ago, and primary insurance in force was $221.4 billion as of March 31, up from $178.3 billion.
As of the end of March, 113,589 loans were delinquent, representing 7.68 percent of MGIC’s portfolio, up from 5.92 percent a year ago.
Last quarter, 107,120 loans were delinquent, and a year ago 76,122 loans had delinquent mortgage payments.
The delinquency rate on prime loans (620+ Fico) was 4.44 percent, up from 4.33 percent in the fourth quarter, while the A-minus delinquency rate inched up to 19.22 percent from 19.20 percent.
The Milwaukee-based company paid out $371 million in claims during the quarter, up from $166 million a year ago.
Shares of MGIC were up $1.56, or 14.86%, to $12.06 in afternoon trading on Wall Street after beating analyst expectations.