updated 11/13/2007 6:00:27 PM ET 2007-11-13T23:00:27

Countrywide Financial Corp. said Tuesday its level of home loan production fell by almost half last month from the same month last year, while the percentage of delinquent loans rose as the mortgage lender continued to grapple with the fallout from the U.S. housing slump.

Countrywide, the largest U.S. mortgage lender, generated $21.9 billion in mortgage loan fundings in October, down 48 percent from $41.8 billion the year-ago month.

Total fundings rose 4 percent from September, the company said.

In all, the lender originated 117,430 home loans during the month, down from 230,196 in October 2006.

Following the collapse of the subprime mortgage market Countrywide dramatically cut back on originating such loans, which are typically made to borrowers with past credit problems.

The company's subprime mortgage fundings posted the biggest decline from a year ago, plummeting almost 99 percent, to $42 million last month from $3.25 billion.

Home equity loan originations totaled $1.35 billion, down 68 percent from $4.29 billion in October 2006.

Countrywide's slate of adjustable rate mortgages — among the most popular type of loan in recent years — fell almost 80 percent, to $3.09 from $16.25 billion a year earlier.

In all, Countrywide had mortgage applications waiting to be processed worth about $41 billion as of Oct. 31, down from $61 billion in the year-ago month.

As of Oct. 31, the company's mortgage loan servicing portfolio was valued at $1.47 trillion, up 16 percent from October last year. The company services loans originated by other lenders.

The company said some 5.89 percent of the loans in its servicing portfolio were delinquent last month, up from 4.43 in the year-ago period. About 0.89 percent of the mortgage loans were pending foreclosure, up from 0.56 percent.

Countrywide noted that more than 90 percent of total loan originations, which includes commercial real estate lending, were funded through its banking subsidiary, Countrywide Bank.

Assets at the bank, which experienced a rash of withdrawals in August as some customers feared their deposits might be lost if the mortgage lender went under, stood at $106 billion at the end of last month, up from $83 billion.

Shares of Countrywide rose 53 cents, or 4 percent, to close at $13.72 Tuesday.

Copyright 2007 The Associated Press. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.


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