US mortgage lending for commercial property fell 54% in the third quarter from a year earlier, led by a decline in loans for malls and shopping centers, the Mortgage Bankers Association said.

The dollar value of loans dropped 56% for office properties and 40% for apartment buildings, the Washington-based Mortgage Bankers said in a statement today. Loans for malls and shopping centers fell 62% and hotel loans declined 46%.

The credit crisis has driven $138bn worth of U.S. commercial properties into default, foreclosure or debt restructuring, according to New York-based Real Capital Analytics Inc.