Federal Home Loan Banks

Browse articles from all of our Newsletters related to Federal Home Loan Banks.

February 12, 2016 - Inside MBS & ABS

REIT Moves to Increase Funding Options for Agency MBS by Forming Its Own Broker-Dealer

Officials at American Capital Agency announced last week that the real estate investment trust formed a wholly-owned broker-dealer subsidiary. The broker-dealer will help provide the REIT with repo funding and to-be-announced MBS trade-clearing capabilities. Peter Federico, a senior vice president and chief risk officer at American Capital, said the REIT started forming the broker-dealer about six months ago. He said the entity is fully staffed and is in the regulatory application process, with operations expected to begin midyear. “Once our broker-dealer is up and running, we will pursue...


February 5, 2016 - Inside The GSEs

FHFA Finalizes FHLB Investment Securities Classification Guidance

The Federal Housing Finance Agency released guidance in late January on how the Federal Home Loan Banks should classify investment securities. In doing so, it adopted the 2013 Uniform Agreement for FHLBank supervisory purposes. Where FHFA’s rule and guidance and the 2013 Uniform Agreement may conflict, the FHFA said its rules and guidance will apply. The directive states that FHLBanks should use “sound and conservative assumptions” as they pertain to upgrades and it provides classification approach examples and boundaries. For example, when a bank is considering whether to upgrade a classified security to “pass,” it should base its assessment on assumptions that minimize the likelihood that the FHLBank would need to classify the security again in the future.


February 5, 2016 - Inside MBS & ABS

Mortgage REITs Have Been Down So Long, They’re Starting To Look Up, But MBS Investments Continue to Shrink

The outlook for publicly traded real estate investment trusts that invest in agency MBS and related products is starting to improve, in part, because competing investments are looking ugly. That might seem like a small consolation prize for REITs, but several are posting decent earnings, even though the book value of their common stock is relatively weak. Meanwhile, while certain investors shun their stocks, many companies have engaged...


January 29, 2016 - Inside Nonconforming Markets

FHFA Decision on FHLBanks and Captive Insurers Seen as a Blow to Non-QM Funding

The Federal Housing Finance Agency’s recent final rule limiting membership in the Federal Home Loan Bank system will reduce funding for originations of non-qualified mortgages and other non-agency activity, according to industry analysts. In recent years, many real estate investment trusts gained access to FHLBank advances via captive insurance companies. A final rule from the FHFA this month closed that so-called loophole, with the regulator claiming that Congress didn’t ...


January 29, 2016 - Inside MBS & ABS

Redwood Pulls the Plug on Buying Fannie/Freddie Loans; Vows to Return to its Roots as an ‘Investor’

Redwood Trust, which pioneered the revival of the jumbo MBS market a few years back, this month officially exited the Fannie Mae/Freddie Mac correspondent-purchase business, dismantling the effort and trimming the size of its Denver office. The real estate investment trust had entered the government-sponsored enterprise market two years ago, after obtaining agency approvals at the end of 2013. It quickly built a network of several dozen lenders that sold whole loans to Redwood, which pooled them in GSE MBS. But sources familiar with the effort told...


January 28, 2016 - Inside Mortgage Finance

FHFA’s Membership Rule Banning Captive Insurers From FHLBanks Could Face Legislative and Legal Opposition

A battle on the legislative or even legal front may be brewing that challenges the Federal Housing Finance Agency’s recent decision to exclude certain types of insurance companies from membership in the Federal Home Loan Bank system. The biggest impact of the final rule would be to force a number of real estate investment trusts that have formed captives to gain access to the FHLBanks to give up low-cost FHLBank advances. “The impact on mortgage liquidity and credit access should be...


January 22, 2016 - Inside The GSEs

GSE Roundup

FHFA FHLB Classification Guidance. The Federal Housing Finance Agency put out guidance this week on the classification of investment securities at the Federal Home Loan Banks. It is adopting the 2013 Uniform Agreement for FHLBank supervisory purposes. Where FHFA’s rule and guidance and the 2013 Uniform Agreement may conflict, the FHFA said its rules and guidance will apply. The agreement included FHLBanks using sound and conservative assumptions as they pertain to upgrades and it provides classification approach examples that provide boundaries for upgrading classified securities. Freddie Prices $1 Billion STACR Offering. As the first out of eight Structured Agency Credit Risk offerings planned through October 2016, Freddie Mac...


January 22, 2016 - Inside The GSEs

FHFA Final Rule Bans 'Captives,' Leaving REITs, FHLBs Not Happy

The final rule issued last week banning captive insurance companies from joining the Federal Home Loan Banks ruffled feathers in the mortgage industry and has some pointing to Congress for future guidance on the issue. FHLBank members that joined the system by way of their captive insurers before the Federal Housing Finance Agency’s proposed rule issued in September 2014 have five years to relinquish their membership. Many are real estate investment trusts that would otherwise be ineligible for membership if it weren’t for finding a loophole in the system. Captive insurance members that obtained membership after the FHFA announced the proposed rule have a year to exit the system and unwind their advances.


January 22, 2016 - Inside MBS & ABS

Goldman Sachs Agrees to a Record Settlement, Claims Against BNYM Given the Green Light

Goldman Sachs last week announced it has agreed to a $5.1 billion settlement, the largest regulatory penalty in the firm’s history, concluding an investigation brought by the Residential MBS Working Group of the U.S. Financial Fraud Enforcement Task Force. The agreement in principle is poised to resolve actual and potential civil claims by the U.S. Department of Justice, the New York and Illinois attorneys general, the National Credit Union Administration (as conservator for several failed credit unions) and the Federal Home Loan Banks of Chicago and Seattle. At issue are...


January 15, 2016 - Inside Nonconforming Markets

REITs Directed to Lobby Congress on FHLBanks

Officials at the Federal Housing Finance Agency provided some advice to real estate investment trusts along with the announcement this week that REITs will lose their access to funding from Federal Home Loan Banks: ask Congress to make some changes. “Congress has amended the Federal Home Loan Bank Act in the past to allow additional entities to become members of a Federal Home Loan Bank and it can certainly do so again if it wants some of these entities to ...


January 15, 2016 - Inside Nonconforming Markets

FHFA Cuts Off REIT Access to FHLBanks

The Federal Housing Finance Agency published a final rule this week that will prevent real estate investment trusts from gaining access to financing from the Federal Home Loan Bank system via captive insurance companies. REITs are not allowed direct membership in an FHLBank. However, in recent years a number of REITs have formed captive insurance companies that were granted FHLBank membership because insurance companies were allowed to ...


January 14, 2016 - Inside Mortgage Finance

Final Rule Banning Captive Insurers From FHLBank System Called ‘Disappointing’

Despite receiving hundreds of comments against the proposed rule to ban captive insurance companies from membership in the Federal Home Loan Bank system, the Federal Housing Finance Agency forged ahead this week and issued a final rule banning them from the FHLBanks, upsetting many in the mortgage industry. The decision forces FHLBank members that had used their captive insurers to join the system prior to the FHFA’s proposed rule, many of which are ...


January 8, 2016 - Inside The GSEs

GSE Roundup

Freddie Announces New Alliance with Lenders One. Freddie Mac has teamed up with Lenders One Mortgage Cooperative, based in St. Louis, to give Lenders One members who are Freddie seller/servicers pricing and execution benefits, enhanced access to mortgage products, and professional training and development opportunities. Freddie did not provide additional details on specific pricing benefits .Chris Boyle, senior vice president of single-family sales and relationship management at Freddie, said Freddie Mac is pleased to “help its members reach more eligible borrowers, achieve new efficiencies in the origination process and build strong, competitive businesses.” In related news, Lenders One is still...


January 8, 2016 - Inside The GSEs

FHFA Issues Rule on Business with Fraudelent Mortgage Lenders

The Federal Housing Finance Agency issued a final rule last week to make the process a bit clearer when it comes to ending relationships with fraudulent businesses and individuals. The Suspended Counterparty Program final rule has been in the making for a few years and parts of the interim rule, published in October 2013, have been revised. The final rule, which goes into effect Jan. 22, addresses comments made by Fannie Mae and 11 Federal Home Loan Banks. The program was put in place to help mitigate risk to Fannie, Freddie Mac and the FHLBs. One of the changes made in the final rule is that it allows more time for Fannie and Freddie to...


Poll

A lot has been written lately regarding loan closing delays tied to the new TRID rule. What’s been the average delay at your lending shop, if at all? (Report in business days, not calendar.)

TRID has caused no delays whatsoever because we were prepared.

30%

1 to 4 days.

27%

5 to 10 days.

13%

11 to 15 days. It’s been a nightmare.

11%

We’re too embarrassed to tell you.

20%

Housing Pulse