Subprime Mortgage Crisis Law and Legal Definition

The Subprime Mortgage Crisis is an ongoing real estate crisis and financial crisis triggered by a dramatic rise in mortgage delinquencies and foreclosures. In the United States, the crisis had major adverse consequences for banks and financial markets around the globe. After U.S. house prices peaked in mid-2006 and began their steep decline thereafter, refinancing became more difficult. As adjustable-rate mortgages began to reset at higher rates, mortgage delinquencies soared. Securities backed with subprime mortgages, widely held by financial firms, lost most of their value. The result has been a large decline in the capital of many banks and U.S. government sponsored enterprises, tightening credit around the world.