November 26, 2014

Latest from Inside Mortgage Finance

Total conventional-conforming mortgage originations rose by 11.7% from the previous quarter according to estimates from Inside Mortgage Finance

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Correspondent Channel Saw Biggest Origination Volume Gains During Third Quarter of 2014

All three mortgage-production channels generated solid increases in new origination volume during the third quarter of 2014, but the correspondent market had a measurably bigger gain, according to a new Inside Mortgage Finance ranking and analysis. An estimated $105 billion of home loans were produced by correspondent originators during the third quarter, up 14.1 percent from the previous quarter. That lifted the correspondent share of new originations to 30.4 percent for the, and 30.3 percent on a year-to-date basis. Correspondents are...[Includes four data charts]


Mortgage Industry Braces for Nonbank Capital ‘Standards’ From State Regulators; How Binding Will They Be?

Nonbank mortgage servicers are bracing for an onslaught of new capital recommendations from the Conference of State Bank Supervisors, which could see the light of day in early 2015. But the industry did receive one piece of good news: although the CSBS is working on what it calls “options for prudential standards,” the organization will not be addressing capital for nonbank originators, a CSBS official told Inside Mortgage Finance. The group is...

Lenders Satisfied So Far With Fannie, Freddie Reps- And-Warrant Relief But More Clarifications Expected

Industry groups say they are generally pleased with last week’s more detailed update to Fannie Mae’s and Freddie Mac’s representation-and-warranty framework, but lenders remain expectant of additional details from the Federal Housing Finance Agency going forward. The new rules, retroactive to January 2013, provide that lenders might not be required to repurchase loans that contain data inaccuracies or misrepresentations of buyers’ qualifications, unless those inaccuracies and misrepresentations are “significant” or appear in multiple loans. The clarifications of life-of-loan exclusions announced by the government-sponsored enterprises are designed...

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Inside Mortgage Trends

Originations Surge Fueled Income Gains In 3Q14, But Servicing Profits Slumped

A sharp drop in net income from servicing operations during the third quarter was the key factor in a decline in overall mortgage-banking profitability for a group of major lenders, according to a new analysis by Inside Mortgage Trends. The 11 publicly traded companies, which include most of the top originators and servicers in the industry, reported a combined $1.25 billion in net income from servicing, including the gains or losses from hedging their mortgage servicing rights. That was down 43.8 percent from the second quarter and was the lowest net income from servicing for the group since the third quarter of last year. Two of the companies reported increased servicing revenue. At Huntington Bank, net servicing income nearly tripled ...

Inside The GSEs

Calls to End GSE Conservatorships Mount From Different Sources

The Obama administration noted this week that it is less than keen on the idea of taking up an outgoing Democrat senator’s call to end the six-plus year conservatorships of Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac. Last week, Senate Banking, Housing and Urban Affairs Committee Chairman Tim Johnson, D-SD, suggested the GSEs’ conservatorship be ended if legislative reform is not forthcoming.

Inside MBS & ABS

FHFA: Extensive ‘Testing’ Underway at GSE Common Securitization Platform, An ‘Important Priority’ in 2015

The development of a common securitization platform for Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac and the progression of a single government-sponsored enterprise security remains an “important priority” for the Federal Housing Finance Agency over the next year, according to the FHFA. The GSE conservator noted in its “2014 Performance and Accountability Report” and the FHFA’s revised “Strategic Plan: Fiscal Years 2015-2019,” both issued last week, that the project is proceeding with deliberate speed. “Most of the software needed for the platform’s core functionality has been put...

Inside the CFPB

CFPB Propose Loss Mit Changes to 2013 Mortgage Servicing Rules

If anyone in the housing finance industry thought the CFPB was finished with its mortgage-related rulemaking, they were wrong. Last week, the CFPB issued a batch of proposed amendments to its 2013 mortgage servicing rules, including a number of changes to how servicers handle loss-mitigation applications. First, the bureau is proposing to require servicers to meet the loss-mitigation requirements of its mortgage servicing rules more than once in the life of a loan for borrowers who become current after a delinquency. However, the rule is not clear how many times this could occur over the life of the mortgage. A little insight can be gleaned from a CFPB blog posting geared towards borrowers, which stated, “We are also proposing that ...

Inside Nonconforming Markets

Treasury Sees Multiple Sponsors, SFIG Standards in ‘Benchmark’ Jumbo MBS

The benchmark non-agency mortgage-backed security that the Treasury Department is organizing will vary significantly from recent non-agency MBS. Michael Stegman, counselor on housing finance policy to the Treasury, revealed new details about the planned transaction last week in New York City at the Private-Label RMBS Symposium hosted by the Structured Finance Industry Group and Information Management Network. Stegman said the benchmark non-agency MBS will ideally be ...

Inside FHA Lending

MMIF Value, Capital Ratio Turns Positive

FHA Mutual Mortgage Insurance Fund ended fiscal 2014 in the black but was still far short of its statutory reserve requirement, prompting critics in Congress to renew their cries for FHA reform. An independent actuarial report sent to Congress this week showed that the MMI Fund now stands at $4.8 billion after a gain of nearly $6 billion over the last year. For the first time since 2009, the fund’s capital ratio also crossed into positive territory at 0.41 percent, up 52 basis points from the negative 0.11 percent posted in fiscal 2013. Overall, the economic value of the fund has risen by $21 billion over the last two years because of the aggressive steps the agency took to stabilize and strengthen the fund, the report said. Policy changes led to improved underwriting for single-family mortgages, increased mortgage insurance premiums, stronger loss mitigation policies and higher recoveries, it added. In addition, with ...


What is it going to take to convince lenders to loosen the credit box (i.e., remove underwriting overlays)?

The recent rep and warranty changes announced by the Federal Housing Finance Agency should go a long way in protecting lenders from future buybacks and help expand mortgage credit.
There won’t be any significant elimination of underwriting overlays until the government stops seeking huge mortgage-related penalties and settlements from lenders.
There shouldn’t be any expansion of the mortgage credit box since looser underwriting is what caused the recent mortgage crisis.

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