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October 2011 Archive


COFI Near Record Low
The Cost of Funds Index fell to its lowest level in nearly two years and sits within 2 basis points of its all-time low.

iPhones, Tablets Render CFPB Disclosure Obsolete
The use of smartphones and tablets has already made one of the mortgage disclosures being proposed by Consumer Financial Protection Agency obsolete, and a trade group is calling on the new regulator to adapt the form to today's technology.

Delinquency at Fannie Falls to 2-Year Low
Delinquency fell to the lowest level in more than two years at the Federal National Mortgage Association. Secondary activity, meanwhile, reached a six-month high.

M.I. Business Loses Steam
Mortgage insurers wrote fewer policies last month, and next month looks to be headed even lower. But the numbers have been distorted by the suspension of business at one insurer and the exclusion of data from another.

Mortgage Crimes Ledger
Defendants in a range of mortgage-related criminal cases are being indicted, tried and sentenced at a breakneck pace. Alleged crimes include embezzlement, secondary fraud and mortgage fraud. In addition to borrowers, those being deceived include auditors, regulators and investors. Several cases involve failed banks.

2 Small Financial Institutions Fail
Two federally insured financial institutions, one in the Midwest and one in the South, were seized by their regulators last week.

FL Foreclosure Backlog Discussed by Judges, Attorneys
A forum held last week tackled Florida's massive backlog of foreclosure cases. Both judges and attorneys participated in the event.

Mortgage Activity Slips and Likely to Fall Further
Mortgage rates increased this week and might rise again by next week's report. Meanwhile, new loan inquiries were lower and jumbo pricing was better this week. Financing activity for home purchases has been persistently falling and is down more than a fifth from the same week last year.

Mortgage Market Index 256 for week ended Oct. 28

Strong Originations at MetLife as Servicing Portfolio Slides
MetLife Inc. is the only mortgage lender so far to report a year-over-year quarterly increase in home-loan production. In addition, its mortgage staff increased by 7 percent from the prior quarter. But the servicing portfolio shrank 20 percent in the latest period, while the company announced plans to unload the mortgage business.

CRE Secondary Market Busy
With banks working to clean up their balance sheets, the trading of commercial real estate loan portfolios has recently been active. While one commercial mortgage securitization recently fell apart, the originator of the underlying loans was able to close on another.

Residential Portfolios Trade Hands
Recent secondary marketing transactions include the sale of two residential portfolios of government mortgages, a portfolio assembled from the assets of failed banks and a subprime securitization. Buyers in the transactions are often investment funds, while banks are frequently the sellers.

CFO Admits to Warehouse and Secondary Fraud
The former chief financial officer of a failed Minnesota mortgage lender has admitted to a scheme where he deceived the company's warehouse lenders and sold the same loans twice. Proceeds from the fraudulent transactions were used to cover the company's operating expenses.

Mortgage Rates to Spike
Fixed rates barely moved this week and remained near all-time lows. But mortgage rates are likely to be much higher in next week's report following today's stock market rally.

Delaware v. MERS
The state of Delaware has filed a lawsuit against the Mortgage Electronic Registration Systems Inc. The state claims that the company is not authorized to file foreclosures, doesn't adequately maintain its database and wrongly uses the employees of its members to operate.

Refi Rally Fading as Rates Soar
Good news for the financial markets has interest rates skyrocketing and dreams of a refinance rally fading.

Expected Bailout Costs Lowered for Fannie, Freddie
The projected cost to bail out the Federal National Mortgage Association and the Federal Home Loan Mortgage Corp. are less than forecasted a year ago. The improvement was impacted by better-than-expected loan performance and falling interest rates.

PennyMac Aiming for $1 Billion in Monthly Correspondent Volume
Monthly production at PennyMac Mortgage Investment Trust's correspondent lending unit, which originated less than $0.1 billion in the second quarter, is expected to soar to $1 billion by the end of next year. Achieving the aggressive goal has been made easier by the planned exit of one of the nation's biggest correspondent lenders.

Okla County Sues MERS Over Lost Filing Fees
A class action lawsuit has been filed against Mortgage Electronic Registration System Inc., its parent and several mortgage lenders over filing fees an Oklahoma county says it lost because of the MERS system.

Flagstar Lifts Lending, Cuts Losses
Flagstar Bancorp Inc. increased its quarterly mortgage production while cutting its quarterly losses. The company sold off some of its servicing and improved its servicing system.

ABCs of 50-State Settlement
The biggest component of a potential foreclosure settlement between state attorneys general and the country's biggest mortgage servicers is likely to be loan forgiveness. But an agreement is being held up because some states aren't satisfied with servicers being totally relieved of liabilities before other lending and securitization practices have been investigated.

Chairman, CEO and Directors Leaving Freddie
Freddie Mac's chief executive officer and chairman are leaving the company, as are two members of the board.

Fannie Maintains Pace on Multifamily Issuance
The quarterly volume of multifamily mortgage-backed securities issued by Fannie Mae has not let up this year.

Another Strong Month at Freddie
After jumping by more than a third in August, secondary activity at Freddie Mac was up another 16 percent last month. Delinquency was in line with an industry-wide uptick.

The MBS Litigator
The New York State Supreme Court is a frequently used venue for litigation tied to mortgage-backed securities, though some of the cases wind up in federal court. Often named as a defendant in MBS lawsuits is Countrywide. Two big investment banking houses recently settled alleged actions on securitized loans.

Hirings as Wholesale Lender Launches
A residential lender in Orange County is hiring hundreds of people and opening a wholesale lending division. The expansion follows moves to enhance its retail channel.

2 Tech Firms See Bigger Share of Community Bank Clients
A provider of loan origination systems and a company that helps lenders comply with appraisal rules have both seen a shift from a traditional client base to one dominated by community banks.

MGIC In Better Shape than PMI
Despite losses each year since 2006, MGIC Investment Corp. is in a better position to weather hard times in the housing market than its recently fallen rival, PMI Mortgage Insurance Co.

Acquisition Could Create Top-10 Servicer
Ocwen Financial Corp. has reached an agreement to acquire a subprime servicer, potentially making it a contender for a top-ten position among the biggest mortgage servicers in the country.

Ginnie Issuances Stall
Despite a mortgage market that is being rocked by a flurry of refinances, monthly issuance volume was unfazed at the Government National Mortgage Association.

Senate Addressees 30-Year Subsidies
A hearing was held last week on the subsidization of 30-year fixed-rate mortgages.

Video of Senate hearing on 30-year mortgages

LTV, Appraisal and Reps/Warranty Requirements Removed from HARP
Requirements for loan-to-value limits, mandatory appraisals and representations and warranties have been removed from the Home Affordable Refinance Program.

HARP Improvements Ahead
Rules for the Home Affordable Refinance Program are about to be eased, though HARP isn't the only initiative on the table.

FHA Market Share Falls, Delinquency Jumps
The Federal Housing Administration endorsed 27 percent fewer loans during fiscal 2011 than it did the prior year, dragging down its market share in the process. A slump in purchase production versus August hurt overall monthly activity, though refinance volume was up. Delinquency jumped around 30 basis points during the latest month.

Another Shakeup Impacts BofA Mortgage President
The combination of two units at Bank of America Corp. has the company reorganizing management in a move that impacts the president of the mortgage unit.

Billion Dollar Bank Goes Bust
A quartet of banks met their ends on Friday. But the one that stood out had $1.4 billion in assets and is expected to generate more than $200 million in losses. A reverse lender, meanwhile, has reportedly scaled back its wholesale and correspondent offerings.

PMI Seized
PMI Mortgage Insurance Co. has been seized by its primary regulator, and a partial claim payment plan has been instituted.

Purchases, Jumbos Improve
Purchase financing activity led a small increase in loan inquiries this week, while the premium for a jumbo mortgage was lower. Mortgage business, however stands well below a year ago when rates were even lower than they were this week.

Mortgage Market Index 263 for week ended Oct. 21

Broker Business Leaps at SunTrust
Business from mortgage brokers nearly doubled at SunTrust Banks Inc., while the correspondent channel also turned in a strong performance. The company shaved a few basis points off its delinquency and cut its mortgage losses on a quarter-over-quarter basis.

90-day Delinquency & Foreclosures Up, 30-Day Rate Down
Good news about 30-day delinquency was offset by deterioration in the 90-day rate and foreclosures.

Foreclosures Lift Delinquency
A bump in home-loan delinquency last month was the result of rising foreclosures. The same five states have exhibited the worst for performance for each of the past five months.

Senate Passes Amendment to Reinstate Higher Limits
An amendment that would reinstate recently expired super-conforming limits has made it through one legislative chamber. But not everybody thinks the legislation is a good idea.

Dallas Feels CRE Strain
Like in much of the country, commercial lending has stalled in Dallas as lenders hesitate and delinquency rates linger above national levels. But one bright spot is multifamily, though some question if that market still has room to grow.

Fed Moves Could Drive Rates to New Lows
Mortgage rates recently fell to their lowest levels on record. But potential moves discussed Thursday by a Federal Reserve Board governor could have new records on the horizon.

Fannie, Freddie See Rates Moving in Different Directions
Fannie Mae has mortgage rates falling in the first half of next year, while Freddie Mac forecasts an increase. In the meantime, rates didn't move much this week and are likely to hold through next week. Jumbo borrowers, however, got a break.

Fifth Third Increases Home Loan Investments
Fifth Third Bancorpreported a 45 percent quarter-over-quarter improvement in residential originations. The bank also lifted its residential holdings.

Business Builds at BB&T
Branch Banking and Trust Co. brought in more quarterly mortgage production, though volume fell short of last year's level. The company has maintained growth in its servicing portfolio, and quarter-over-quarter mortgage earnings improved.

Obama Nominates FHA Chief
The Obama administration has announced the president's choice to head the Federal Housing Administration. The nomination comes as many homeowners are giving up the American Dream in favor of renting apartments, and the proposed chief has a background in multifamily.

BofA Subpoenaed Over MBS
Bank of America Corp. has reportedly been subpoenaed by California as the state determines whether investors were misled about mortgage-backed securities. There is speculation that the move is being made to increase the state's leverage in a broader settlement with multiple state attorneys general.

Citi Settles Subprime CDO Lawsuit for $285 Million
Citigroup Inc. has settled allegations that it structured a collateralized-debt obligation that was destined to plummet in value, misled investors in the marketing of the security then bet against it.

PNC Turns In Weak Performance
Quarterly delinquency was higher at The PNC Financial Services Group Inc., while the company missed out on production gains reported so far by most of its competitors.

Delinquency Down, Originations Up at U.S. Bank
Quarterly residential loan production shot up 42 percent at U.S. Bancorp , though business was down from last year. Although residential and commercial delinquency were both lower, late payment on home-equity loans worsened.

Annual Apartment Originations Up Almost a Third
Apartment loan production jumped last year, with a broad range of properties financed, according to a trade group report that also found a high concentration in the multifamily lending business.

Bank Continues Expanding Mortgage Staff
After launching a loan officer recruiting campaign earlier this year, a northeast bank is hiring production personnel to support expanded operations.

CMBS Performance Takes Turn for Worse
Hurt by deterioration in the office property sector, monthly delinquency on securitized commercial mortgages was higher. Hotel loans also played a role in the declining performance.

M.I. Program Enhanced for Brokers
Mortgage brokers are being cut a break on underwriting requirements by one mortgage insurance company.

Foreclosure Attorney Network being Disbanded
Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac are being told by their regulator to change their systems for selecting foreclosure attorneys.

BofA Production Tumbles, Earnings Improve
While other firms have so far been reporting healthy gains in their third-quarter originations, Bank of America Corp.'s home-loan production sank as it reshapes its mortgage unit. Quarterly earnings improved by $15 billion at the parent company.

Generation Grabs Top Reverse Wholesale Lender Spot
A monthly tally of government-insured reverse mortgage originations had Generation Mortgage Co. as the biggest wholesale lender. Meanwhile, a long reign for the No. 1 reverse lender based on both retail and wholesale production will soon come to an end.

CRE Borrowers Sue BofA
A group of borrowers hoping to stop foreclosure on four commercial properties in North Carolina have filed a lawsuit against Bank of America Corp. The plaintiffs claim that the bank wrongly stopped funding loans, didn't follow through with promised loan modifications and forced them into costly interest rate swaps.

2nd Half Funding Forecast Lifted $100 Billion Again
Again, the Federal National Mortgage Association has lifted its outlook for second-half originations by at least $100 billion.

Citi Volume Leaps by More than Half
Residential originations at Citigroup Inc. skyrocketed 55 percent from the second quarter as earnings were stronger. Delinquency, however, was worse.

Q4 Refi Forecast Doubled
Economists at the Federal Home Loan Mortgage Corp. have dramatically improved their outlook for fourth quarter refinance activity. Even purchase activity looks better.

Higher Originations Likely to Keep Rising at Wells
New loan originations strengthened at Wells Fargo & Co. and are headed even higher based on the company's pipeline. Delinquency, however, was another story. Quarterly earnings at the company rose to an all-time high.

Brutal Week As 6 Firms Finished
Four banks with assets of between $161 million and $204 million each failed Friday, and related losses will range from $38 million to $72 million each. The smallest of the banks had the most employees, while one of the firms had a big concentration in commercial mortgages. Recent non-bank casualties include an operation that securitizes commercial real estate loans and an appraisal management company.

Secrets of Mega-Producing Loan Originators
A survey of the nation's top-producing loan originators found that three elements of customer satisfaction are most important. The male-dominated group manages to maintain high levels of production despite frustration with growing regulatory requirements.

Refis Down More than a Quarter
Elevated mortgage rates sent new refinance business down more than a quarter this week, while the declines were more moderate for purchase and government inquiries. But some easing could be ahead for mortgage rates.

 Mortgage Market Index 255 for week ended Oct. 14 | Oct. 14, 2011

Fannie Ranks Servicer Performance
Fannie Mae handed out assessments on a group of mortgage servicers that handle servicing portfolios less than $100 billion.

House Passes Legislation to Expand VA Eligibility
Legislation that would expand eligibility to certain spouses of deceased veterans has made its way through the House and will now be considered by the Senate.

Best and Worst RMBS Servicers
A new report rates the biggest servicers of securitized mortgages. Among poor performers, the integration of acquired servicing operations was a big obstacle to better performance. Many of the loans that became delinquent over the past year were secured by Golden State properties.

Rising Rates Could Hold
Fixed rates had a big bounce off last week's all-time lows and might remain elevated in the next set of reports. But the one-year adjustable-rate mortgage was lower.

Servicer Examinations Explained
The new consumer financial regulator has released an outline of its plan to regulate mortgage servicers.

Chase Originations and Mortgage Staff Up, Delinquency Down
JPMorgan Chase & Co. has added nearly 9,000 mortgage jobs during the past year. Quarterly home-loan production strengthened and looks to be headed higher, while delinquency declined despite a shrinking servicing portfolio.

Appraiser Profession Evolves Over Past 2 Decades
Appraisers are doing more work and earning less income, according to the owner of a Minnesota appraisal firm who has a disdain for appraisal management companies. While new regulations can be burdensome, he acknowledged some benefits for appraisers operating in today's environment.

REOs Up, Falling Foreclosures to Turn Higher
While foreclosure filings have calmed considerably from a year ago, one forecast calls for a storm on the horizon. Meanwhile, a month-over-month uptick in completed foreclosures was reported.

214,855 foreclosure filings in September

Delinquency Rises Again
Last month was the second consecutive month that 30-day delinquency on home loans was higher. The deterioration comes as the amount of outstanding mortgages continues to erode.

MetLife Home Loans For Sale
Just three months after proclaiming that it plans to stay in the mortgage business, MetLife Inc. has had a change of heart. The company also confirmed its plans for the reverse mortgage business.

Chief of Failed Firm Pleads Guilty
The former president of a company that went out of business after losing its approval to originate and securitize government mortgages has pled guilty to running a scheme that diverted loan funds to cover company operating expenses.

Mortgage Fees Litigated
Mortgage lenders and servicers are being challenged in court on fees they charge, when the fees are applied and who is subject to the fees. One mortgage fee case will be heard by the U.S. Supreme Court.

HUD Chief Outlines 2 QRM Down Payment Options
Department of Housing and Urban Development Secretary Shaun Donovan told mortgage bankers this week about two down payment scenarios that would qualify for an exemption to risk-retention rules. He also talked about Obama administration achievements, higher guarantee fees and potential improvements to a federal program for refinances.

Credit Scores Highest in Wisconsin, Worst in Texas
Four cities in Wisconsin were among the locales with the highest credit scores. Texas, on the other hand, had four of the worst-ranking cities.

Ginnie Makes Warehousing, Servicing Transfers Easier
Changes at the Government National Mortgage Association are intended to smooth the warehouse lending process and ease servicing transfers.

Senators Call for Obama to Move on Refis
Senators from both sides of the isle have sent a letter to the Obama administration calling for the elimination of loan-to-value requirements on refinances. But that's not all they are asking for.

Purchase Outlook Dims as Refi Forecast Flourishes
The projection for home-purchase financing in the fourth quarter has been cut 16 percent. But a huge 45 percent increase in expected refinance closings was enough to lift the overall origination outlook for the entire year.

HSBC Resumes N.Y. Foreclosures
Almost a year after it suspended foreclosures in the state of New York, HSBC has restarted some foreclosure actions.

LOS Systems Enhanced as Originations Increase
Amid a refinance frenzy, developers of loan origination systems are showcasing their wares at an annual mortgage banking event. One service provider is addressing the limited budgets of lenders during the past few years, while other LOS vendors are touting enhancements and newly secured clients.

Reverse Lender Launches with Former Wells LOs
Former loan originators at Wells Fargo & Co.'s reverse mortgage business have been recruited by a new reverse lender. It's the third month in a row that a new reverse mortgage lender was announced.

Protesters Put MBA On Alert
A planned protest had attendees on alert at the Mortgage Bankers Association's 98th Annual Convention and Expo in Chicago.

Maximizing Web Site Conversions
New research indicates that customers who complete loan applications online have high quality risk characteristics and a better closing ratio. The report looked at how some Web sites generate more conversions than others.

Business Picks Up at Fairway
Fairway Independent Mortgage Corp. pushed quarterly originations higher and sees the strength continuing through the end of the year.

Lenders One Reports Milestone
Membership at the Lenders One Mortgage Cooperative reached a new milestone.

Another Portfolio Lender Emerges
Another portfolio lender is wading into the waters of non-agency investments. The latest entrant is looking to acquire broker-originated mortgages with low loan-to-value ratios.

New Credit Risk Scoring Model in Works
An agreement has been reached to create a new credit scoring model with deeper insight into consumer credit risk.

Pulte Mortgage Chief Among Host of MBA Appointments
The chief executive officer of Pulte Mortgage was sworn in as a Mortgage Bankers Association chairman-elect at the group's annual conference in Chicago. It was one of several appointments announced.

Title to Loans Disputed in Court
Challenges to ownership title on mortgage loans are often made by borrowers hoping to stave off foreclosure, frequently with the Mortgage Electronic Registration Systems Inc. on the other side of the table. But title disputes are also arising amongst competing lien holders.

103-Year-Old Institution Among 2 Bank Failures
State regulators in Minnesota and Missouri last week closed a pair of banks, including one that had been around for more than a century. Losses associated with the two failures are expected to reach nearly $190 million.

Sinking Rates Raise this Week's New Loan Activity
An early look at this week's mortgage activity indicates that falling mortgage rates helped boost new mortgage activity, with Federal Housing Administration loans turning in the strongest performance. Refinances were up almost a third from the same week last year, but purchases were down more than a fifth. A strong employment report likely means worse rates ahead.

Mortgage Market Index 321 for week ended Oct. 7

Mortgage Employment Falls; 2010 Data Revised Up
The exodus out of real estate finance continued, while data previously reported for a year ago was adjusted up by nearly 14,000 jobs. A stronger-than-expected report for all types of jobs had the 10-year Treasury yield deteriorating.

BofA Short Sale Incentive Pays Borrowers Up to $20k
Bank of America Corp. has rolled out a program in Florida that gives defaulted borrowers up to $20,000 if their houses are sold through a short sale. Some in the industry say the offer is a move to ensure outgoing borrowers keep their properties in good condition.

Rates Set New Records as 30-Year Cracks 4% Floor
It was the second consecutive week that 15-year mortgages lost some of their advantage over 30-year loans and the first time that 30-year mortgages were priced under 4 percent. Both products fell to their lowest levels on record. But one-year adjustable-rate mortgages turned higher in response to the Federal Reserve's Operation Twist.

More Details Expected Soon on Negative Equity Refis
Testimony before a Senate committee Thursday indicated that it will likely be just a matter of weeks before details emerge about a refinance program for borrowers with loan-to-value ratios in excess of 100 percent.
Treasury secretary testifies before Congress

Texas Pricing Engines Merge
An acquisition by a mortgage technology firm has resulted in the merger of two Texas-based product and pricing engines.

Wholesale Lenders Seek Mortgage Brokers
Wholesalers across the country have been busy rolling out new conventional, government and commercial mortgage programs. Even correspondent lenders are stepping up their offerings. Two firms hope to fill the void left by departing reverse wholesale lenders.

Servicer Sued for Defamation, Misrepresentation
A Missouri borrower who was unable to make her mortgage payment was able to negotiate a $15,000 payoff on her $93,000 home. But two years later the settlement still hadn't consummated, prompting the borrower to sue the servicer and its law firm for defamation and misrepresentation.

HAMP Volume Plunges to All-Time Low
The monthly volume of government loan modifications fell to the lowest level since the program went live. But one servicer that managed a monthly gain ascended to the top-producer spot.

15,522 permanent modifications completed in August

BofA Laying Off Hundreds of Retail LOs
Hundreds of mortgage employees are being laid off as Bank of America Corp. closes dozens of retail sales offices in several states.

Negative Equity Much Worse on Non-Agency MBS
Loan-to-value ratios in excess of 100 percent are far more prevalent on loans included in private-label securitizations than the overall universe of residential mortgages. The outlook is for further deterioration.

Mixed Delinquency Data
While quarterly delinquency was lower for closed-end home-equity loans, late payments on home-equity lines of credit, mobile-home loans and property improvement loans were all higher.

Borrowers Underestimate Home Values, Credit Scores
An analysis of existing and prospective borrowers found that they often underestimate their own credentials. The report identified a trend towards an increased emphasis on lower payments as opposed to lower rates or shorter terms.

Available Equity for Reverse Mortgages at 7-Year Low
The amount of home-equity available for reverse mortgages has fallen to the lowest level in seven years. But senior citizens have seen less of a decline than the overall population.

Major Lenders Accused of Charging Illegal VA Fees
Two Atlanta mortgage brokers are suing more than a dozen major lenders alleging that they collected illegal fees on rate-term refinance loans that are guaranteed by the Department of Veterans Affairs.

Fewer Consumers Resort to Bankruptcy
The number of consumers who turned to bankruptcy last month was lower. Year-over-year filings also improved.

NMLS Deadlines Ahead
Registered mortgage companies and loan originators face multiple upcoming deadlines.

BofA Correspondent Closing Impacts Mostly Countrywide Employees
No buyer was found for Bank of America Home Loans' correspondent lending division, and the unit will be shut down. Many of the more than 1,000 employees who are impacted by the closure were employees of Countrywide Home Loans.

Wholesaler Hirings AEs
A wholesale lender that is less than two years old is expanding its sales staff. Qualified applicants will need to have a base of mortgage broker customers already in place.

FHFA Could Have Reined in Foreclosure Mills Earlier
A new report found that Fannie Mae and its regulator could have done more early on to prevent foreclosure-process abuses by the secondary lender's network of law firms. The report found that Fannie continued to use problem firms even as Freddie Mac was issuing terminations.

HECM Endorsements Drop
Federally insured reverse mortgage business fell in September, though some retail originators were able to increase originations.

MTA Records Keep Coming
It was the same old story for the Monthly Treasury Average, which again fell to a new record low.

Radian Adjusts Pricing, Credit Score Requirements
Upcoming updates at Radian Guaranty Inc. impact pricing and minimum credit scores. The mortgage insurance company has also revised its appraisal requirements, refinance eligibility guidelines and policy on automated underwriting.

See Saw Activity Continues With COFI
After a blip in July, the Cost of Funds Index resumed its descent.

BofA Suspends FHA Cashouts
Cashout refinance transactions insured by the Federal Housing Administration have been suspended by Bank of America Home Loans.

VA Payments On Hold
Payments on loans guaranteed by the Department of Veterans Affairs are being held up.

Capital Requirements Revised for Ginnie Issuers
Issuers of mortgage-backed securities that are guaranteed by the Government National Mortgage Association are now subject to revised capital requirements.

Pricing Platform Expanded
A popular product and pricing engine has been expanded to include prospecting, processing and lead-qualification features.

Strategic Vantage Hires Mike Murray
Strategic Vantage, one of the nation's largest marketing and public relations agencies dedicated to the mortgage industry, announced the appointment of Mike Murray as Senior Account Executive.

Former Longtime Editor for MBA NewsLink Joins Marketing and Public Relations Agency

Signs of Life in CMBS
While the market for securitized commercial mortgages remains weak -- with delinquency still on the rise -- signs of improvement emerged last month.

Fannie Issuance Up Sharply in September
Issuance of mortgage-backed securities jumped by a quarter last month at Fannie Mae. Activity at its two agency counterparts was also higher, though nowhere near as strong.

Bank Failures Sink
A 42% decline in bank failures this year has mortgage-related casualties sinking from 2010. But litigation against former management at those firms is up.

105 mortgage-related failures and closings so far in 2011

Excessive Asset Concentration Cause Institutions' Failures
Texas saw its first bank failure in more than a year. The bank had a high concentration of commercial mortgages. A report on a previously failed corporate credit union indicated that its assets were too concentrated in private-label residential mortgage-backed securities. Both firms were based in the same city.

24 Arrested in BofA Foreclosure Protest
Two dozen individuals protesting Bank of America Corp.'s foreclosures were booked and jailed this week. But a bank spokesman called the actions a public relations stunt.

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