The availability of mortgage credit bounced back a bit in December the Mortgage Bankers Association (MBA) said today.  Its Mortgage Credit Availability Index (MCAI) increased 0.6 percent to 110.9 from 110.2 in November.  The uptick followed four straight months in which the Index declined. 

The MCAI analyzes data from the AllRegs® Market Clarity® product.  A decline in the index indicates that lending standards are tightening.

MBA said credit availability was little changed as investors continued to fine-turn credit score and LTV eligibility matrices.  The association said it appeared that many investors had previously made adjustments to account for new regulations from the Consumer Financial Projection Bureau which go into effect next week.   

The MCAI was benchmarked to 100 in March 2012.  By way of context, MBA said had credit been tracked in such a way in 2007 the index would have been at a level of roughly 800, indicating the credit was much more available at that time.