Commercial, multifamily mortgage debt rises to $3.4 trillion

Most investor groups increase holdings as CMBS decline

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The level of commercial/multifamily mortgage debt outstanding grew by 1.8 percent in the first quarter, to $3.4 trillion, according to the Mortgage Bankers Association (MBA) analysis of the Federal Reserve Board Flow of Funds data. The first-quarter load of mortgage debt outstanding represented an increase of $60.8 billion from fourth-quarter 2007. Multifamily mortgage debt outstanding grew to $856 billion, an increase of $18.5 billion, or 2.2 percent, from the fourth quarter. "Investors continue to increase their holdings of commercial/multifamily mortgages," said Jamie Woodwell, MBA's senior director of commercial/multifamily research, in a statement. "The global credit crunch meant a net decline in the balance of mortgages held in CMBS, CDO and other ABS, but banks, thrifts, life insurance companies, Fannie Mae, Freddie Mac and nearly every other investor group increased their holdings of commercial and multifamily mortgages during the quarter." T...