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October 2014 Archive


Ocwen Originations, Servicing and Earnings Worsen
In addition to swinging to a big quarterly loss, Ocwen Financial Corp.'s originations moved lower, and its mortgage servicing portfolio contracted.

McLean Mortgage Lifts YOY Originations
McLean Mortgage Corp. is one of the only companies that were able to lift residential loan production from a year earlier.

New Business More Than Doubles at Arch M.I.
The latest quarter was a spectacular one for Arch Mortgage Insurance Co., with new business more than doubling and delinquency declining.

Mortgage Rates Rise On Strengthening Economy
Mortgage rates bounced off last week's 2014 lows as optimism increased about the labor market and the Federal Reserve moved forward with its plans to end its quantitative easing strategy.

7th Yr of Growth Likely for CRE Loan Originations
The origination of commercial real estate loans is forecasted to reach seven consecutive years of growth and surpass any year since the financial crisis.

Refinance Marketing Picks Up
As interest rates on home loans have fallen below 4 percent, many mortgage firms are opening the marketing spigot to lure prospective refinance borrowers.

Mortgage Originations Jump at Quicken
Home lending activity was up by nearly a fourth on a quarter-over-quarter basis at Quicken Loans Inc. The servicing portfolio expanded.

Judge Tosses Most of Huge Jury Award Against PHH
A more than $16 million jury award against PHH Mortgage Services has been mostly thrown out by the judge in the case.

Apartment Loan Securitizations Soar at Fannie
The volume of apartment loans securitized by the Federal National Mortgage Association nearly doubled on a quarter-over-quarter basis.

Credit Scores Rise, As Does Higher LTV Share
After a period of loose lending standards, credit scores have returned to levels similar to those of two decades ago. But a larger share of mortgages have higher loan-to-value ratios.

Repossessions Rise as Mtg Delinquency Decreases
A smaller share of mortgages were considered seriously delinquency last month. At the same time, the volume of completed foreclosures increased.

Office Loans, GSEs Lead Rise in CRE Originations
Quarterly commercial mortgage production moved higher. Office property loans and mortgages acquired by the government-sponsored enterprises led the gain.

Data Lost in Servicing Transfers
An estimated nearly half-million home loans that have been transferred from one servicer to another have inaccurate data, according to a recent report.

Homeownership Rate at Nearly 2-Decade Low
It's been nearly two decades since the rate of homeownership has been this low. Behind the declining share are lending restrictions, an uncertain job market and higher home prices.

Home Price Gains Lose Steam
Tight credit conditions, less interest in higher-priced homes and diminished seller expectations are taking a toll on home prices.

Share of Fraudulent Mortgage Applications Rises
As the volume of loan originations has diminished, so has the number of loan applications containing mortgage fraud. But the share of fraudulent applications has increased. Although states like Florida experienced a substantial increase in fraud risk, other states -- including the Grand Canyon State -- have seen a big improvement.

Freddie Mac's Total Portfolio Expands
An increase in the Federal Home Loan Mortgage Corp.'s total mortgage portfolio was registered for last month as new business slipped and delinquency fell to the lowest level since 2008.

CMBS Delinquency Down But Could Deteriorate in 2015
Performance on securitized commercial real estate loans improved last month and is likely to get even better before the year is out. But there is concern about an upcoming wave of maturing loans.

Midwest Fares Worst in Weak Pending Sales Report
Although the level of contract signings on existing homes was at the second-highest level in a year, volume was slower than expected. Activity in the Midwest was the weakest in the nation.

Many Agree Tight Lending Holding Back Home Sales
Government officials, consumer advocates and industry experts all agree that mortgage lenders are keeping credit conditions too tight out of regulatory fears.

117-Yr-Old Chicago Bank Fails
A Chicago bank with nearly $1 billion in assets that was more than a century old has been shut down.

FHA Originations Drop, Delinquency Deteriorates
Monthly Federal Housing Administration originations turned lower and could see a further decline -- though reverse mortgage volume will likely rise. Loan delinquency worsened.

Fannie Cuts Originations Forecast for 2014 and 2015
Fannie Mae has lowered its expectations for mortgage originations this year and next year -- with the purchase financing outlook taking the biggest hit.

Jumbo Leads Decline in Weekly Mortgage Activity
With jumbo business leading the way, new mortgage activity tumbled following the spectacular improvement registered the previous week. An increase in jumbo rates outpaced the increase in conforming rates.

Mortgage Market Index 204 for week ended Oct. 24
Monthly Home Loan Performance Improves
The number and share of past-due home loans improved in September both on a month-over-month basis and a year-over-year basis.

Freddie Refinances Soar
Although monthly refinances turned lower for Fannie Mae loans, the story was a different one at rival Freddie Mac.

Wingspan Confirms Founder Out as CEO
Wingspan Portfolio Advisors LLC has confirmed that its founder has been ousted from his chief executive officer role as the company unloads a subsidiary and gets a capital infusion.

Regions Refinance Originations Rise
Despite a dip in purchase mortgage financing at Regions Financial Corp.'s, an increase in refinancing pushed overall home lending higher.

QEs Impact on GSEs
The Federal Reserve's quantitative easing programs contributed to a sharp increase in fee income at the government-sponsored enterprises last year, though subsequent tapering had the opposite effect this year.

Mortgage Rates Sink But Likely to Bounce Up
Although fixed mortgage rates tumbled this week, they are likely to bounce back up in next week's report. Fifteen-year loans became far more appealing.

Mortgage Closing Rate Deteriorates
Loan originators closed a smaller share of loan applications last month. Refinances fared worse then purchase transactions.

Prospect Fails to Win Second Employee Non-Solicit Lawsuit
For the second time this year, Prospect Mortgage LLC has lost a lawsuit it filed alleging that former employees violated non-solicitation agreements.

Freddie Mac Raises U.S. Origination Forecast
Economists at the Federal Home Mortgage Corp. have increased the volume of mortgage originations expected for this year and next year.

Flagstar Fundings Up, Mtg Assets and Servicing Off
The mortgage servicing portfolio and residential lending assets shrunk at Flagstar Bancorp Inc., but home loan originations expanded.

134-Year-Old Bank, Correspondent Lender Done
Among several mortgage-related businesses to recently call it quits was a bank that was 134 years old, three credit unions and a correspondent lender.

Over $1 Billion In Agency MSRs For Sale
Bids are being accepted on two portfolios of mortgage servicing rights with more than $1 billion in agency loans.

Backdating Prompts Ocwen Servicer Downgrade
Allegations that Ocwen Financial Corp. backdated letters to distressed borrowers has prompted a downgrade to its servicing subsidiary's rating.

Proprietary Reverse Mortgage Originations Slide
Although the monthly origination of government-insured reverse mortgages has fallen, the decline has been more noticeable for proprietary production.

2014-15 Mortgage Origination Outlook Jumps $157 Bil
Expectations for this year's purchase financing expanded by 12 percent, while projections for next year's refinance production increased 14 percent.

Serious 1st Mortgage Delinquency Up Again
Serious delinquency on first mortgages deteriorated for the second consecutive month. Also moving higher was the rate on second mortgages.

2014 High for Home Sales
Retreating mortgage rates and less competition from cash investors helped home buyers purchase more properties last month.

Ocwen Accused of Backdating Borrower Letters
Ocwen Financial Corp. has been accused of serious issues in its servicing practices including potentially backdating hundreds of thousands of borrower letters.

Industry Applauds QRM-QM Alignment
A final rule on risk-retention requirements has been completed by federal regulators, and the mortgage industry is reacting favorably. The rule aligns the qualified residential mortgage definition with the Qualified Mortgage.

Home Equity Lending Trends
Investor interest in revolving home-equity lines is growing as compliance burdens on closed-end home-equity products increase. One servicing system is being touted as a single solution for all types of home-equity and first lien products.

GSEs to Lift LTVs, Lower Repurchase Uncertainty
A plethora of positive news about government-sponsored enterprise lending emanated today from the crème de la crème of mortgage conferences.

Further Tightening in Ginnie Issuer Requirements
Just days after unveiling new minimum issuer volume requirements, the Government National Mortgage Association disclosed changes to other issuer requirements.

GSE Mods Ok On FL Loans Delinquent Over 2 Years
Florida borrowers who are more than two years past due on their government-sponsored enterprise mortgages will have an opportunity to modify their loans.

GSE Updates Intended to Loosen Mortgage Credit
Clearer guidelines about when seller-servicers can expect repurchase demands from Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac are intended to help lenders ease up on their own requirements.

Ellie Cracks 100k Users
The number of loan production personnel utilizing Ellie Mae Inc.'s mortgage management solution has moved past the 100,000 milestone.

Correspondent Originations Surge at SunTrust
Even though residential loan production was down for the retail channel, SunTrust Banks Inc.'s correspondent acquisitions jumped by a third -- pushing overall originations up.

Weekly Refinance Activity Soars
A sharp decline in mortgage rates sent refinance activity into the stratosphere and pushed overall activity to the highest level in more than a year.

Mortgage Market Index 241 for week ended Oct. 17

Multifamily Originations, Outstandings Increase
As mortgage bankers grew the volume of apartment loans originated last year, the amount of multifamily loans outstanding expanded.

Residential Construction Rises
Home construction activity moved higher last month, with the construction of new apartment buildings leading the way.

5th 3rd Ekes Out Gain in Mortgage Originations
Fifth Third Bancorp reported a small quarterly gain in residential loans production. Its mortgage investment portfolio grew, but its servicing portfolio was off.

Ginnie Issuers Face Minimum Issuance Requirements
Issuers of mortgage-backed securities guaranteed by the Government National Mortgage Association will soon face minimum activity requirements.

Home Builder Confidence Dips, Though Still Good
Following several months of increased optimism, the nation's home builders turned less confident this month. Still, the group is mostly positive.

Mortgage Rates Sink to Lowest Level in Over Year
Volatility in global markets helped drag down long-term fixed rates on home loans to the lowest level in more than a year.

Proprietary Modification Volume Up, HAMPs Slip
An increase in the number of monthly proprietary loan modifications completed more than offset a reduction in the number of government-supported modifications.

Foreclosure Filings Fall to Pre-Crisis Level
Foreclosure activity declined to the lowest level in more than eight years. Filings have subsided on a year-over-year basis for 48 months in a row.

106,866 total filings in September
Mortgage Losses Widen at BofA
An increase in new home lending at Bank of America Corp. wasn't enough to offset the cost of a recent massive settlement with the government.

Community Banks Spend More to Be Compliant
The cost for community banks to keep up with regulatory changes rose over the past quarter thanks to increased labor costs. Costs have fallen, however, over the prior year.

Canadian AMC Acquires US AMC
An appraisal management company out of Canada has taken an interest in an AMC in the United States with plans for a major American expansion.

Mortgage Closings Climb at Citi
Citigroup Inc. increased mortgage production, grew its domestic real estate lending portfolio and improved earnings. Legacy mortgage assets were reduced, as was its servicing portfolio.

Refi Outlook Brightens As 10-Year Yield Plunges
A steep decline in the 10-year Treasury yield reflects investor anxiety about European markets. But the market movement signals refinance opportunity for loan originators.

BofA 2014 Texas Layoffs Surpass 600
A new round of job cuts at Bank of America Corp. has pushed Lone Star State mortgage layoffs past 600 for this year.

The Mobile Mortgage Factor
Among companies to recently enhance their mobile offerings are a wholesale lender, a valuation technology firm and a mortgage insurance company.

Banks Take Lead in Mobile Migration
As consumers abandon traditional bank branches in favor of mobile platforms at breakneck speed, financial institutions are enhancing their mobile offerings at a comparable pace.

Wells Fargo Mtg Originations Flat, Delinquency Up
Residential loan production moved minimally higher at Wells Fargo & Co. But performance deteriorated on mortgages in both its servicing portfolio and investment portfolio.

Chase Correspondent Mortgage Production Soars
Home loan originations shot up by a quarter at JPMorgan Chase & Co., though business remained down by nearly half from a year earlier. Correspondent acquisitions drove the increase and are likely to offset a fourth-quarter decline in retail originations.

Low Income Groups Try to Block OneWest Sale
An acquisition of the company formerly known as IndyMac Bank FSB is being challenged by low-income groups that say the bank only caters to the 1 percent.

Nearly 50 Mortgage Events in Q4
Nearly 50 mortgage-related conferences and other meetings are scheduled for the final quarter of this year -- including the industry's main shin dig.

Jumbo Reverse Mortgage Product Launches
A brand new jumbo reverse mortgage product is expected to be a boon for senior borrowers in the Golden State.

New Homes Costly, Hard to Find in SoCal
As home builders focus on more profitable upscale homes in Southern California -- median prices are rising, the gap between new and existing homes is widening and home shoppers are struggling to find new properties.

Mortgage Compliance Made Easier
A crop of new and enhanced services are intended to help home lenders and servicers address upcoming disclosure rules, new licensing requirements and updated agency requirements.

Mortgage Firms Refine Executive Ranks
Several mid-sized mortgage companies have recently made a number of appointments to their management teams. There's been plenty of action at smaller firms too.

Refi Business Surges As Mortgage Rates Recede
New mortgage activity leapt to a five-month high ahead of the Columbus day holiday, and it was refinance business that was out front of the surge.

Mortgage Market Index 186 for week ended Oct. 10
Bankers Bribed in Secondary Marketing Scheme
A case out of Southern California involves bribes to bankers at JPMorgan Chase Bank, N.A., and other financial institutions in the sale of second mortgage notes.

Mortgage Rates Drop, Could Fall More
A nice improvement was made on fixed mortgage rates this past week, and another improvement is possible by the next report.

Small Multifamily Loan Program Launches
A new agency program that has been created to finance multifamily loans is targeted at smaller apartment properties.

Top-10 HECM Lender Calling It Quits
A company that is among the 10 largest producers of government-insured reverse mortgages has disclosed plans to exit originations.

U.S. Bank Strikes Bank at Housing Group
U.S. Bank is accused of doing a worse job maintaining real-estate-owned properties in Minneapolis' minority neighborhoods than it does in predominantly white areas.

NY Mortgage Servicer Adding Staffing
A mortgage servicer owned by Wall Street firms has secured enough new office space to add more than a hundred employees and could grab even more space.

Wells Fargo In Biggest Maternity Settlement So Far
While there have been plenty of settlements over the past three years related to alleged maternity leave discrimination, none has been as big as the one reached by Wells Fargo & Co.'s mortgage unit.

Opportunity Lurks as HELOC Production Rises
It's been five years since the origination of home-equity lines of credit has been this high, and opportunity may be lurking in the sector.

MGIC's New Biz Slips But Delinquency Keeps Falling
Although new business slowed at MGIC Guaranty Insurance Corp., the level of defaults fell to a new multi-year low.

Special Servicer Sees Staffing Growth Subside
At one point, Wingspan Portfolio Advisors was a job-making machine. More recently, employees in two states were advised of impending layoffs -- though some could return.

Mortgage Debt Patterns Altered By Crisis
A shift in the financial profile of the U.S. population over the past decade has mortgage debt making up a bigger share of liabilities for older Americans and a smaller share for millennials.

Digital Risk Hopes New Products Offset Mortgage Loss
The outgoing chief executive officer of Digital Risk LLC acknowledged that demand has waned for the mortgage service provider's products and said a new business line might revive revenues.

AU Likely Culprit of Bernanke's Denied Refinance
While the former Federal Reserve chairman isn't saying much about his denied application to refinance except that lenders might have gone too far, industry insiders speculate that he has plenty of options.

MBS Issuance Recedes at Ginnie
The volume of monthly securitizations moved lower at the Government National Mortgage Association. Both residential and commercial real estate activity were down.

Correspondent Nonprime Program Launching
A company that has made a name for itself brokering portfolios of mortgage servicing rights said it will begin acquiring nonprime mortgages.

BofA Cutting Its Texas Ranks
Mortgage jobs in North Texas are being eliminated by Bank of America Corp. Employees in originations and servicing are impacted.

Junior Lien Performance Strong at Banks
Residential junior lien performance improved on a quarter-over-quarter basis as the past-due rate on overall consumer delinquency dove to a record low.

New Business Up, Delinquency Down at Radian
Radian Guaranty Inc. wrote more business last month, while it pared the number of past-due policies in its portfolio.

Mortgage Advertising Strategies
Mortgage firms are promoting their marketing messages through multiple channels including billboards, radio and television. One company announced plans to generate secure loan applications directly from social media.

MTA Fails to Set New Record
After establishing a new all-time low each of the prior 12 months, the news is that the Monthly Treasury Average failed to set a new record last month.

Former Bank Executives Appeal From Behind Bars
The former chief executive officer of a failed Virginia bank, his son and a former executive vice president have appealed their convictions from prison.

MSR Forward Commitment Up for Bid
A monthly forward commitment offering could work out to mortgage servicing rights on as much as $700 million in agency loans a year.

Bankruptcy Filings Ease
Fewer consumers across the country resorted to bankruptcy last month. Among all states, Mississippi had the worst bankruptcy rate.

Weekly Refi Activity Rises on Retreating Rates
Subsiding mortgage rates lured refinance prospects back into the market. Interest rates on jumbo mortgages were more improved than on conforming loans.

Mortgage Market Index 172 in week ended Oct. 3
Strategy for Preserving GSEs
One view of what should be done with Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac is to keep them and make them more useful for consumers.

Bank Settles Redlining Accusations
A discrimination settlement being made by a bank-holding company comes as lenders digest two other types of recent discrimination settlements.

Mortgage Jobs Expand, But US Job Growth Hurts Rates
The last time the unemployment rate was this low, the financial crisis hadn't yet culminated and another administration was in the White House. Mortgage jobs expanded, but the solid U.S. report is hurting mortgage rates.

Government Lending Tightens
Conventional lending standards were slightly more flexible last month, but that was offset by tightened access to government-backed mortgages.

30-Year Mortgage Rate Dips, Could Ease Further
Fixed interest rates on home loans were little moved over the past week but are poised for a potential decline in the next report.

Serious Delinquency, Foreclosures Hold
There was no monthly movement in the rate of serious mortgage delinquency. While the number of completed foreclosure was little changed, the pace remains far ahead of more normalized times.

1 Lender Grabs Over Quarter of HECM Market in Sept
Last month, a single reverse mortgage lender was responsible for more than a quarter of all reverse mortgages that were federally endorsed.

Freddie Reports Solid August
The Federal Home Loan Mortgage Corp. saw its strongest month this year in new business. It's been more than a half decade since residential delinquency was this low.

OC Man Charged With Warehouse Lending Fraud
Charges have been handed down by a federal grand jury against an Orange County, Calif., man who allegedly duped his warehouse lender.

Investors Lose First Round in GSE Lawsuits
Speculators who picked up shares of Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac in order to sue the government were dealt a blow.

BofA Board Elects New Chairman
Bank of America Corp.'s board of directors has elected a new chairman from among the firm's own executive ranks.

Fannie Revising 3rd-Party Asset Verification Policy
The Federal National Mortgage Association is changing its policy on the utilization of third parties to verify assets.

Drop in Industrial Property Loan Lates Lead CMBS
Performance on industrial property loans was more improved last month than on any other type of securitized commercial real estate loan.

Fannie Drives Up Agency MBS Issuance
September turned out to be the best month so far this year for issuance of agency mortgage-backed securities thanks to a surge in activity at Fannie Mae.

COFI Returns to Record Low
Following two consecutive months of increases, the Cost of Funds Index relented and returned to its all-time low.

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