All Things Considered

Recently, the Wall Street Journal reported that 5.09% of all mortgages in the country were more than 90-days overdue in the fourth quarter of 2009.

The number comes from the Mortgage Bankers Association, and you can see the full report here. The percentage represents all mortgages in the United States, and it includes data from all of the country’s commercial banks.

There was no good news in that number, particularly as we have all been telling ourselves that the recession is over and the economy is beginning to rebound.

I’m sure that it doesn’t feel like a rebound for 5% of mortgage holders.

In our own financial institution, we watch overdue accounts very carefully. It’s one indicator of the overall health of our portfolio.

According to our December numbers, just 1.12% of our borrowers were 90-days (or more) overdue on their payments. That’s significantly lower than the percentage overdue at commercial banks.

We don’t think that there’s ever an acceptable level of overdue accounts. In fact, we have a very stringent procedure to help struggling borrowers, called “Borrower’s Rights.” Borrower’s Rights is a procedure followed by all Farm Credit institutions, and it ensures our borrowers that we will work with them—using all the tools that we can—to help them keep their property and preserve their businesses until the economy does rebound. And rebound for everyone.

Until this economy truly does turn around, I’m proud to report that Farm Credit continues to fare better than our competitors. And that’s good news for all of our borrowers.

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