Commercial and multifamily mortgage debt outstanding rose 2.4% to $2.35 trillion in the first quarter, according to the Mortgage Bankers Association.Multifamily mortgage debt stood at $607 billion at the end of the first quarter, up 1.3% from the level at the end of 2004, the MBA reported, citing Federal Reserve Board flow-of-funds data. Commercial banks hold the largest share of commercial/multifamily mortgages, with $1.01 trillion (43% of the total), the MBA said. (This category includes "commercial and industrial" loans that have commercial property as collateral.) Issuers of commercial mortgage-backed securities hold $444 billion (19%) of the total, followed by life insurance companies, which hold $254 billion (11%), the MBA reported. Savings institutions hold $184 billion (8%), and government-sponsored enterprises hold $125 billion in the form of multifamily mortgages that back the securities they issue and also hold $56 billion of "whole loans" in their own portfolios, for a total share of 8%. The MBA can be found online at http://www.mortgagebankers.org.

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