The dollar volume of primary new mortgage insurance written by the members of the Mortgage Insurance Cos. of America increased 12.5% in December, according to the trade group.A total of $19.0 billion of primary new insurance was written during December, of which $14.6 billion was traditional and $4.4 billion bulk. (The total compares with $16.6 billion in November and $20.7 billion in December 2003.) Meanwhile, application volume in December was 129,645, up from 124,731 in November but down from 145,213 in December 2003. For calendar year 2003, the MI companies' best month for dollar volume was June, at $21.6 billion, while March was the best month for applications, with 189,311. At the end of the year, $609.2 billion of primary insurance was in force and $141.6 billion of primary risk was in force, down from $619.1 billion and $143.7 billion, respectively, at the end of 2003. New pool risk written totaled $52.4 million in December, bringing the total pool risk in force to $10.8 billion, down from $13.6 billion one year ago. There were 34,747 cures and 44,608 defaults in December, a ratio of 77.9%. (There were only two months in 2004 with more cures than defaults.) All the private MI companies belong to MICA except for Radian Guaranty. MICA can be found online at http://www.micanews.com.

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