Cortland Bancorp exits wholesale mortgage business

CORTLAND – Cortland Bancorp this week announced plans to leave the wholesale mortgage operations business effective immediately.

CSB Mortgage Co., a wholly owned subsidiary of Cortland Savings and Banking Co. established in 2011, stopped accepting residential mortgage loan applications from mortgage brokers as of the close of business Friday. CSB Mortgage will continue to process and fund all mortgage broker-originated loans already in process, bank officials said.

In a prepared statement, the company said it intends to streamline its mortgage operations and intensify its focus on commercial and business lending channels and its retail banking offices.

The company said during the height of its operations, wholesale originations had comprised more than 90 percent of the mortgage volume of CSB Mortgage, producing mortgage banking gains of $1.8 million for the year ended 2012.

After a robust first half in 2013, wholesale volume has dramatically declined during the third quarter and is not expected to substantially improve through year end. Bank officials attributed that to rising interest rates.