TROY, MI-The members of iCap’s Michigan office like what they see when they look at the office’s closings for 2003. When they look at the 10-year bond rates for the rest of the year, they see volatility on the horizon.

In an interview with, Ken Marblestone, managing director of iCap’s local office, and directors Scott Seltzer and Matthew Shane said until a general consensus develops on the future movement of the economy, volatility will be the likely result for interest rates.

“After a relatively steady decrease in rates over the last few years we have recently witnessed a severe rate swing with the 10-year bond moving from a low of 3.5% up to 4.6% and back down to 4% all in a matter of three months,” Marblestone said. “Given that we are at or close to 40-year lows in interest rates we certainly think there is more risk rates will rise significantly than fall significantly. Overall, if clients have projects ready to finance, then this is a great time to finance them.”

The recent swings in the market haven’t impacted iCap’s ability to close deals, however, the local directors said.

Shane said the Michigan office will see total closings for 2003 approach $200 million. He said in the fourth quarter, on the low end of expectations, the office should close 10 loans totaling $40 million.

“Real estate professionals are deal makers and deals will get done in a rising interest rate market. Plus, there will still be a vibrant refinance market,” he said. “However, a rise of, let’s say, 1.5% would certainly impact the volume of deals in the marketplace. That just means that we’ll have to hustle more.”

Marblestone said the local office joined the iCap family, which now includes offices in 18 US cities, in February of 2003, after functioning as an independent.

He said becoming part of a national network has allowed the loan-makers in the Detroit office to follow their clients wherever a deal may go.

“It has given us much more ability to be able to service our clients,” he said. “We’re easily having our best year ever.”

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