Volume for private mortgage insurers suffered in January as rising interest rates severely cut into production levels, according to data from the Mortgage Insurance Cos. of America.Only $14.7 billion of primary new insurance was written in January, down from $20.7 billion in December. Even though Radian pulled out of the group last July, there was no month in 2003 in which primary insurance totaled less than $20 billion. By type, $12.8 billion of traditional insurance and $1.9 billion of bulk insurance was written in January. The number of applications received continued its decline. In July, the first month without Radian, 291,678 applications were received. In January, that fell to 122,642, nearly 13% fewer than the 145,213 received in December. More bad news was seen in the cure/default ratio. January's ratio was 67.89%, compared with 83.7% in December and 75.9% in January 2003. There were 36,213 cures and 53,340 defaults during the month. MICA can be found online at http://www.micanews.com.

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