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Investors Sink $300 Million in Struggling Warehouse Lender
Taylor, Bean & Whitaker is leading a $300 million investment in a struggling financial institution that operates a warehouse lending business.

An announcement yesterday from Colonial BancGroup indicated it had signed a definitive agreement for a group of investors led by Ocala, Fla.-based Taylor, Bean to make a $300 million equity investment in Colonial.

The transaction will give the group a 75 percent interest in the Montgomery, Ala.-based firm.

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Biggest Retail Reverse Lenders
Retail reverse mortgage production reached a record last month and is projected to continue increasing. The biggest retail reverse lender was also last year's biggest residential lender.

During the first quarter, 30,205 U.S. retail reverse mortgages were endorsed, rising from 27,653 in the fourth quarter, according to Reverse Market Insight Inc.

The improvement was attributed to an increase in the reverse mortgage limit, which was boosted to $625,500 in February.

Dark Side of Modification Business
As a national crackdown was launched on loan modification companies, several federal and state lawsuits were filed. Meanwhile, faced with bad press over predatory practices, modification companies have resorted to name calling.

In servicer bulletin 2009-8 today, Freddie Mac clarified that borrowers must currently have a monthly housing expense-to-income ratio of more than 31 percent to qualify for the Home Affordable Modification Program. Servicers are required to solicit all borrowers who are at least 31 days past due for the program by April 15.

The Secondary Scoop
The secondary market for mortgages is unthawing -- with agency activity increasing, buyers' appetite for non-performing loans growing and marketplace technology improving.

G8 Capital LLC reported last month that it closed on 13 portfolio acquisitions from financial institutions of varying size during the past 18 months. In addition, the Ladera Ranch, Calif.-based firm will now acquire real estate owned and non-performing loans throughout the West in addition to California. Once acquired, G8 has room to restructure the loans.

5 Financial Institutions Fail Friday
Including the seizure of three financial institutions already reported on Friday, banking regulators closed down a total of five firms Friday. The Federal Deposit Insurance Corporation expects to lose nearly $700 million from the failures.

The slaughter started with Eastern Financial Florida Credit Union, which was closed down by the Florida Office of Financial Regulation.

Loan Modifications Daily
A Virginia firm is helping delinquent borrowers avoid mortgage fraud prosecution while extorting rate and principal reductions from their lenders. Another company says some borrowers should just walk away from their mortgages. Most loan modification firms, however, are defending their fees as the government advises modification prospects to avoid shady firms and utilize free services.

The Loan MOD Report
Federal regulators are suing two bogus modification companies, and a private firm has put a bounty on another allegedly illegal operation. Meanwhile, as service providers increase their modification offerings for mortgage servicers, a growing number of modification companies are emerging to exploit lender compliance errors.

Biggest U.S. Mortgage Lenders
Participants in the Troubled Asset Relief Program have seen monthly residential originations double since December, though home-equity lending has fallen. The biggest U.S. lender extended its lead during the latest month.

Countrywide, WaMu & Pulaski Brands Abandoned
Two formerly huge names in residential mortgage lending have been retired as several smaller firms also adopt new brands.

ResCap Expanding Warehouse & Jumbo
Residential Capital LLC's warehouse unit has hired a new chief to oversee an expansion of the business. In addition, the lender plans to step up its jumbo offerings. A healthy pace of bank deposit growth will fund much of the expansion.

Read the full text of these articles and many more at:


Sam Garcia
Mortgage Industry News

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