The American Land Title Association (ALTA) has released financial results for the title industry for the third quarter of 2008, reporting an operating loss of $332.1 million, compared to an operating gain of $168.7 million for same period in 2007.
The third quarter of 2008 marked the tenth consecutive quarter in which title premiums written declined from the prior year's equivalent quarter. Furthermore, each successive quarter's decline was greater than the previous quarter's.
The third-quarter 2007 decline was more than 15%, and the fourth-quarter decline was 22%. The first-quarter 2008 declined over 26%, the second-quarter 2008 declined almost 28%, and the third-quarter declined over 30%, indicating that poor markets not only continue through the current year, but were still worsening through the third quarter.