Wells Fargo was the number one mortgage lender in 2008, according to a report released today by MortgageDaily.com.
The San Francisco-based bank originated $230 billion in residential mortgage loans during the year, factoring in recently-acquired Wachovia’s fourth quarter production.
However, combined production from the pair was 25 percent lower than numbers seen in 2007, highlighting the intense pullback seen in the industry.
JPMorgan Chase was the second largest mortgage lender in 2008, with $185.3 billion in loan originations.
The New York City-based bank, which acquired Washington Mutual last year, saw combined volume sink 37 percent below year-ago levels.
Bank of America was third on the list with $181 billion in loan originations, thanks in large part to its acquisition of Countrywide Financial.
Countrywide was the largest mortgage lender in 2007, and ranked fourth this year based on its first and second quarter originations alone, which totaled $132 billion.
Rounding out the top five was Citigroup, with full year production of $104.3 billion. The company scaled back considerably during the year after posting record related losses.
“Three of the 10 biggest mortgage lenders in 2007 were taken over by other institutions last year, leaving fewer players vying for a smaller pie,” said MortgageDaily.com Publisher Sam Garcia, in a release. “But our outlook is for increased first-quarter and full-year activity, with Wells and BoA battling over the top spot.”
Overall, residential loan origination volume was down 36 percent compared to 2007.