Commercial, multifamily mortgage debt outstanding jumps $333 billion

Savings institutions, pension funds shed loan holdings

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Commercial and multifamily mortgage debt outstanding hit $2.95 trillion at the end of 2006 after growing by $333 billion, or 12.7 percent, from the end of 2005, according to the Mortgage Bankers Association analysis of the Federal Reserve Board Flow of Funds data. In the fourth quarter alone, the debt outstanding increased by $99 billion, or 3.5 percent, from a year earlier. Multifamily mortgage debt outstanding by itself stood at $731 billion at year-end -- an increase of $51 billion, or 7.5 percent, over the year, and $15 billion, or 2.1 percent, in the fourth quarter alone. "The growth in commercial/multifamily mortgage holdings comes amid a number of signs of continued market strength," said Jamie Woodwell, MBA's senior director for commercial/multifamily research. "The most recent Federal Reserve Beige Book characterized commercial real estate markets as strong, solid and firming. We also see low delinquencies and other signs of mortgage performance continuing to s...