Quicken Cashes In on the Mortgage Refi Boom

The refi boom helped the online lender vault past its rivals
“There’s a massive market out there, and 93 out of 100 people still wake up and go somewhere else.” — Bill Emerson Photograph by Chip Somodevilla/Getty Images

No company has taken better advantage of the refinancing boom than Quicken Loans. The Detroit-based firm was the 34th-biggest mortgage lender in 2006. Last year, Quicken overtook Citigroup as the nation’s fifth-ranked mortgage lender in the third quarter. The $25 billion in loans it made during the fourth quarter pushed it past U.S. Bancorp and Bank of America into the No. 3 spot, behind Wells Fargo and JPMorgan Chase. For the full year, lending jumped to $70 billion, up from $30 billion in 2011, with refis accounting for 85 percent of the total. “Our mission is to do as much or more than we did last year,” says Chief Executive Officer Bill Emerson. “There’s a massive market out there, and 93 out of 100 people still wake up and go somewhere else.”

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