Legal Issues

Browse articles from all of our Newsletters related to Legal Issues.

July 22, 2016 - Inside The GSEs

FHFA Denying Access to GSE Corporate Records

The Federal Housing Finance Agency is seeking to prevent GSE shareholder and director of Investors Unite, Tim Pagliara, from inspecting the corporate records of Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac. Pagliara filed a lawsuit in state courts in March hoping to gain access, as an individual stockholder, to the GSEs’ records to determine the circumstances surrounding the sweep. Fannie, incorporated in Delaware, and Freddie, incorporated in Virginia, both denied his request to review the records earlier this year. Pagliara then argued that his rights as a shareholder were denied for “no legitimate basis.” This week, the FHFA filed a motion to substitute itself for Pagliara and remove...

July 22, 2016 - Inside MBS & ABS

Eleventh Circuit Opinion in GNMA-Related Case Shines Light on Two Important Securities Fraud Laws

Stakeholders in the MBS market should pay attention to a recent U.S. 11th Circuit opinion concerning a jury verdict in which the court focused on the similarities and differences between two kinds of securities fraud, suggested attorneys in their analysis of the case. Although the opinion in SEC v. Radius Capital Corp. is unpublished and not a binding precedent, it gives further clarity to two of the most important rules used by the Securities and Exchange Commission in targeting securities fraud, according to attorneys with the law firm Carlton Fields. The SEC sued...

July 21, 2016 - Inside Mortgage Finance

State Court Ruling Sets Precedent Against Servicers’ Practice of Changing Locks Before Foreclosure

A recent ruling by the Washington State Supreme Court goes against servicers’ practice of changing the lock on a property before a foreclosure. While such practices are generally allowed under mortgage contracts and have been approved by other states, the Washington state court ruling is favorable to 3,600 borrowers in a class-action lawsuit and could cause further issues for servicers. Laura Jordan v. Nationstar Mortgage centered on Nationstar’s actions after the borrower defaulted on her mortgage. A vendor acting on behalf of Nationstar inspected the property, deemed it to be vacant and changed the lock on the front door. The vendor also left a lockbox on the door with the key to the new lock and the borrower was provided access to the key. Jordan represents...

July 15, 2016 - Inside FHA/VA Lending

Senate Passes Legislation Easing Condo Recertification Process

The U.S. Senate this week passed legislation that includes reforms to current FHA restrictions on condominium financing, among other provisions. H.R. 3700, the Housing Opportunity Through Modernization Act of 2016, was approved without amendment by unanimous consent. The bill passed in the House of Representatives by a vote of 427-0 in February. The bill addresses problems facing buyers and sellers of condominiums. Specifically, the bill modifies the Department of Housing and Urban Development’s rental assistance and public housing programs, FHA’s requirements for condo mortgage insurance and the U.S. Department of Agriculture’s single-family housing guaranteed loan program. Among other things, the bill requires the FHA to make recertifications “substantially less burdensome,” while lowering the ownership-occupancy requirement from 50 percent to 35 percent. The current ...

July 15, 2016 - Inside FHA/VA Lending

GOP Critics Blast DASP Changes, Claim Move is Politically Motivated

House Republicans this week accused the Department of Housing and Urban Development of giving preferential treatment to political favorites in changes to FHA distressed asset sales. House Financial Services Committee Chairman Jeb Hensarling, R-TX, denounced changes HUD Secretary Julian Castro made to the Distressed Asset Sale Program (DASP), saying the moves help liberal special interests at the expense of private investors. Hensarling said the changes would create “preferential bidding” for certain buyers and restrict investor options. HUD expanded DASP in 2012 as a conduit for selling nonperforming FHA loans to investors with the proviso they must first help borrowers save their homes from foreclosure and foreclose only if all loan-modification options have been exhausted. Distressed note sales also helped stabilize FHA’s Mutual Mortgage Insurance Fund and have contributed more than ...

July 15, 2016 - Inside Nonconforming Markets

SEC Charges Against Thornburg Officials Rejected

A federal jury in late June ruled in favor of former officials from Thornburg Mortgage in a lawsuit brought by the Securities and Exchange Commission in 2012. The charges centered on disclosure and accounting issues the jumbo lender faced in early 2008. The trial involved 10 counts against Larry Goldstone and Clay Simmons, the former CEO and chief financial officer of Thornburg, respectively. The jury ruled in favor of the former Thornburg officials on six counts and was ...

July 11, 2016 - Inside the CFPB

Coordinated Planning Key in Complying With New HMDA Rule

Among a host of best practices and other tips lenders should consider for complying with the CFPB’s new Home Mortgage Disclosure Act rule is coordinated institutional planning, according to Ellen Costa, vice president of strategy and business capability development at Wells Fargo Home Lending. Speaking to attendees at the recent regulatory compliance conference sponsored by the American Bankers Association, Costa said, “All of the CFPB's regulatory changes – HMDA in particular – mean significant change management within your institution. It is a best practice to be very agile and proactive about coordinating a project plan that includes a strategy upfront, really understanding what the regulations are driving at.” A solid plan developed ahead of time and properly executed will allow a clear ...

July 11, 2016 - Inside the CFPB

Redlining Focus Evolving to Comparisons With Peers

The redlining risk that lenders face these days is morphing to include not just a consideration of a bank’s internal behavior but also a comparison of the bank’s performance against its peers – a far more nebulous and uncertain standard of accountability. During a presentation at the American Bankers Association’s regulatory compliance conference last month in San Diego, Carl Pry, a managing director at Treliant Risk Advisors, told attendees, “Regulators are defining redlining risk a little bit differently these days. Traditionally, redlining involved looking at your own bank’s map: you plot out where your applications are, where the loans are, where the denials are – and you stand back and take a look and see, perhaps, that there are a lot of ...

July 11, 2016 - Inside the CFPB

CFPB’s First Use of ‘Mystery Shopping’ Results in $10.6M Fine

The CFPB and the Department of Justice late last month announced a $10.6 million enforcement action against BancorpSouth, a regional bank headquartered in Tupelo, MS, alleging the lender engaged in discriminatory mortgage lending practices that harmed African-Americans and other minorities. Of particular note, the bureau said, “This is the CFPB’s first use of testing, sometimes referred to as ‘mystery shopping,’ to support an allegation of discrimination.” The government’s complaint accuses BancorpSouth of illegally redlining in Memphis, TN, denying certain African-Americans mortgage loans more often than similarly situated non-Hispanic white applicants, and charging African-American customers more for certain mortgage loans than non-Hispanic white borrowers with similar loan qualifications. The agencies also alleged the lender implemented an explicitly discriminatory loan denial policy...

July 11, 2016 - Inside the CFPB

Fitch Updates RMBS Rating Criteria to Reflect TRID Grades

Fitch Ratings recently updated its U.S. residential mortgage-backed securities rating criteria, partly to include adjustments to due diligence grades having to do with the CFPB’s Truth in Lending Act/Real Estate Settlement Procedures Act Integrated Disclosure rule, otherwise known as TRID. Fitch said it expects that participating third-party due-diligence review firms will determine whether mortgages being reviewed for inclusion in MBS have been closed in compliance with the disclosure rule. Further, the ratings service said it would request that due diligence firms grading loans determine whether the findings are more likely to carry statutory damages and assignee liability or just assignee liability. When it comes to grading TRID loans under the revised criteria, Fitch said unresolved errors that carry an increased ...

July 11, 2016 - Inside the CFPB

TRID Errors Unlikely to Threaten Jumbo MBS, Moody’s Says

Secondary market participants’ reluctance to invest in mortgages out of fear of liability from the loans being originated with TRID errors seems misplaced or overblown, a new report from Moody’s Investors Service suggests. Violations of the CFPB’s integrated-disclosure rule will not notably increase losses in prime jumbo residential mortgage-backed securities, according to a recent analysis by the ratings service. As Moody’s sees it, TRID violations in prime jumbo RMBS will be minimal and often curable. “Prime jumbo RMBS exposure to loans that violate TRID will largely be kept in check thanks to third-party due diligence reviews,” Moody’s said. On top of that, lenders and aggregators will be able to correct most TRID violations before issuers place the affected mortgages in ...

July 7, 2016 - Inside Mortgage Finance

Predatory Lending Comes to the Fore as SCOTUS Opts to Take Cases Involving Miami vs. Wells, BofA

Mortgage lenders may get greater clarity on the legal question of just who may sue them for alleged racial discrimination, after the Supreme Court of the United States announced recently it would take on separate lawsuits filed by the city of Miami against Bank of America and Wells Fargo. The city accused the pair of perpetrating discriminatory mortgage lending within its jurisdiction over a long period of time. The city alleged that the banks’ conduct violated the Fair Housing Act in that they intentionally discriminated against minority borrowers and that their conduct had a disparate impact, resulting in an unbalanced number of foreclosures on minority-owned properties. The precise legal issue before the high court is...

July 1, 2016 - Inside FHA/VA Lending

Inflation Adjustments Raise Fines For Violating FHA, VA, GNMA Rules

Lenders will face higher penalties for violations of agency rules and regulations as the FHA and the Department of Veterans Affairs adjust their respective maximum civil monetary penalties for inflation. The adjustments are mandated by the Federal Civil Penalties Inflation Adjustment Act Improvements Act of 2015, which also requires publication of an interim final rule showing the current and adjusted penalty amounts. Effective June 22, 2016, VA’s maximum civil monetary penalties for false loan guaranty certification increased from $10,000 to $21,563, and from $5,500 to $10,781 for fraudulent claims or statements in any VA program. Comments on the VA interim final rule must be received on or before Aug. 22, 2016. Meanwhile, the FHA also is making inflation adjustments for its maximum civil penalties through an interim final rule that will take effect Aug. 15, 2016, the day before the ...

July 1, 2016 - Inside FHA/VA Lending

FHA Condominium Lending Trends Downward as Activity Slows in 1Q

FHA condominium lending fell in the first quarter to $1.6 billion, down 8.6 percent from the prior quarter. The volume decline was the second in a row for the sector, when production fell 20.3 percent from the third to the fourth quarter last year. On the other hand, year-over-year volume saw a whopping 35.3 percent increase. The top 10 FHA condo lenders were dominated by nonbanks, with Quicken Loans leading the field. The only bank among the top 10 was Wells Fargo, which landed in third place with $45.3 million despite a 35.7 percent drop in condo loan originations in the first quarter. Leader Quicken Loans closed the quarter with $73.6 million, while second-ranked Freedom Mortgage Corp. clocked in with $55.6 million. Fourth-place LoanDepot originated $33.7 million in FHA condo loans, while Broker Solutions rounded out the top five category with $31.1 million. In November last year, FHA announced ... [ 1 chart ]

July 1, 2016 - Inside FHA/VA Lending

FHA Announces More Changes to DASP to Better Protect Borrowers

Investors in FHA’s distressed note sales program would be required to do more for homeowners to help them avoid foreclosure and keep their homes, thanks to improvements to FHA’s Distressed Asset Stabilization Program (DASP) announced this week by the agency. The changes appear aimed at consumer groups’ criticism of the Department of Housing and Urban Development for allowing profit-oriented investors to purchase the troubled HUD assets at a discount and flip the homes for a profit without ever helping the distressed homeowner. Although the transactions make good economic sense for investors and the government, struggling homeowners end up losing their homes without having tried any loan modification option that could have helped them avoid foreclosure. HUD launched the DASP in 2010 under pressure from Congress to help stabilize the FHA’s Mutual Mortgage Insurance Fund, which ...

July 1, 2016 - Inside Nonconforming Markets

Ocwen Settles HAMP Lawsuit; Avoids Downgrade

Ocwen Financial faced mixed results in servicing litigation recently while avoiding further downgrades of its corporate issuer default rating. Last week, Ocwen announced that it had agreed to settle two lawsuits brought by the Department of Justice involving the Home Affordable Modification Program and FHA mortgages. The pending $30 million settlement involves alleged violations of the False Claims Act, among other issues. The lawsuits were brought in 2012 by ...

July 1, 2016 - Inside Nonconforming Markets

HSBC Settles 2002 Subprime Lawsuit for $1.58B

HSBC Finance announced in June that it reached a $1.58 billion settlement on a subprime mortgage-related lawsuit filed back in 2002. The shareholder class-action lawsuit centered on activities by Household International, which was acquired by HSBC for $14.6 billion in 2003. The lawsuit claimed Household International and officials at the company made false or misleading statements about predatory lending practices, the quality of its loan portfolio, and the company’s ...

July 1, 2016 - Inside MBS & ABS

SCOTUS Refuses Case Involving Nonbanks and Preemption Of State Laws, Causing Uncertainty for Secondary Market

Pleas from the securitization industry for the Supreme Court of the United States to hear an appeal of Midland Funding v. Madden were rejected this week, prolonging uncertainty in sectors of the secondary market. SCOTUS may still consider the issue at some point going forward, according to analysts, providing hope for the industry. Richard Johns, executive director of the Structured Finance Industry Group, said the denial of certiorari for Madden will result in significant challenges for borrowers of credit cards, mortgages, auto loans and other financial products. “The injection of uncertainty into the credit markets will ultimately increase the cost of credit for all and directly impact the real economy,” he said. The Madden case involved...

June 30, 2016 - Inside Mortgage Finance

Servicing Litigation Continues to Stalk the Industry: Ocwen, Nationstar and Cenlar Are Under Fire

Last week, Ocwen Financial agreed to a $30 million settlement with the Department of Justice regarding two lawsuits that alleged violations of the False Claims Act. The lawsuits alleged that Ocwen Loan Servicing and Ocwen’s Homeward Residential division violated the FCA by falsely certifying their compliance with the Home Affordable Modification Program and FHA insurance programs, thus rendering all HAMP incentive and FHA insurance payments on Ocwen- or Homeward-serviced loans false claims. One of the cases was scheduled...

June 30, 2016 - Inside Mortgage Finance

Borrower Seeks Class Certification in FCRA Suit Against Fannie Mae, Alleges Unfair Post-Bankruptcy Inquiry

A borrower recently filed a lawsuit seeking class-action status against Fannie Mae related to an inquiry made into his credit file after his bankruptcy process was completed. Some attorneys said the case hints at a new type of lawsuit on the horizon stemming from the Fair Credit Reporting Act. Grant Bailey alleges that the government-sponsored enterprise made unauthorized inquiries into his credit after bankruptcy released him from any debt he owed to Fannie. Bailey filed documents in federal court on June 15 stating that the inquiry without his consent was not permissible under the FCRA and did not serve any legitimate business need. These allegations represent...

June 27, 2016 - Inside the CFPB

CFPB Issues Updated Mortgage Servicing Examination Manual

In an effort to spur better industry compliance with its 2013 mortgage servicing rules, the CFPB last week released an updated mortgage servicing exam manual, reflecting a greater emphasis on the handling of consumer complaints as well as fair lending. The bureau regularly publishes a mortgage servicing chapter of the CFPB Supervision and Examination Manual to reflect regulatory changes, to make technical corrections, and to update examination priorities. This new, third iteration of its exam procedures offers guidance to financial institutions and mortgage companies on what the bureau will be looking for in its exams. Among other things, mortgage servicers should note a greater emphasis in exams on the handling of consumer complaints. The CFPB has enhanced the section related ...

June 27, 2016 - Inside the CFPB

Fair Lending Focus Shifting to Access to Credit, Pricing Issues

Mortgage lenders looking to get ahead of the fair lending enforcement curve need to be aware that the industry will face greater scrutiny from the CFPB on two main fronts: access to credit and pricing issues, according to one top attorney. Speaking at the American Bankers Association’s recent regulatory compliance conference in San Diego, Andrew Sandler, chairman and executive partner at the BuckleySandler law firm in Washington, DC, said, “There are really two sets of issues that we’re seeing in fair lending, and that we’re increasingly going to see over time. The first is access to credit as an absolute concept.” As the U.S. came out of the financial crisis, as policymakers adopted all kinds of rules, regulations, philosophies and ...

June 27, 2016 - Inside the CFPB

Bureau Faults Mortgage Servicers For Using Failed Technology

A special edition of the CFPB’s supervision highlights report issued last week claims that some mortgage servicers continue to use failed technology that has already harmed consumers, putting such firms in violation of the agency’s servicing rules, which were released in 2013. “Mortgage servicers can’t hide behind their bad computer systems or outdated technology. There are no excuses for not following federal rules,” said CFPB Director Richard Cordray. “Mortgage servicers and their service providers must step up and make the investments necessary to do their jobs properly and legally.” The bureau acknowledged that some servicers have made significant improvements in the last several years, partly by enhancing and monitoring their service platforms, staff training, coding accuracy and auditing, and allowing ...

June 27, 2016 - Inside the CFPB

Compliance Pros Provide Tips On How to Test for TRID

Mortgage lenders throughout the land are justifiably anxious about complying with the CFPB’s TRID integrated disclosure rule. But compliance professionals at Treliant Risk Advisors recently provided a number of key checkpoints that lenders can use to prepare themselves and examine their own degree of compliance. During a presentation at the American Bankers Association’s recent regulatory compliance conference in San Diego, Lyn Farrell, a managing director at Treliant, rattled off a list of TRID technical compliance testing criteria for attendees. First, lenders should “ensure that the testing scope includes all covered products from all applicable channels,” Farrell said. They also should check that their institution provides all disclosures by the appropriate deadlines, including, of course, all loan estimates and closing disclosures....

June 27, 2016 - Inside the CFPB

SFIG Issues TRID Compliance Review Documentation

Late last week, the Structured Finance Industry Group, a securitization trade association, put out its long-awaited compliance review documentation related to the CFPB’s integrated disclosure rule under the Truth in Lending Act and the Real Estate Settlement Procedures Act. SFIG said its RMBS 3.0 TRID Compliance Review Scope documentation was put together by representatives of third-party review firms across the industry and its own RMBS 3.0 Due Diligence, Data and Disclosure Working Group. The material addresses TRID compliance issues on non-agency mortgages uncovered during reviews by due diligence providers. Under the standards, loans that would have received grades of C or D due to TRID exceptions can sometimes receive B grades if errors are corrected. The document was created to ...

June 27, 2016 - Inside the CFPB

CFPB Expected to Codify Informal TRID Guidance. Will it Go Further?

There is plenty of speculation in the mortgage industry these days about which issues are going to be addressed in the CFPB’s pending proposed rule to clarify many of the uncertainties associated with its Truth in Lending Act/Real Estate Settlement Procedures Act Integrated Disclosure Rule, commonly known as TRID. During a panel discussion at the American Bankers Association’s annual regulatory compliance conference in San Diego earlier this month, Rodrigo Alba, senior vice president and senior regulatory counsel with the ABA, speculated that one of the main areas the bureau will address is the codification of the informal guidance CFPB officials have provided since the rule was released. As he sees it, the bureau will take all of the content and ...

June 27, 2016 - Inside the CFPB

Life Under TRID: Regulators’ Good-Faith Enforcement Period is Evolving

Given the high stakes associated with the CFPB’s Truth in Lending Act/Real Estate Settlement Procedures Act Integrated Disclosure Rule, commonly known as TRID, the mortgage lending industry perhaps can be forgiven for being hyper-sensitive to minute, incremental change, whether it be another clarifying rulemaking or a change in enforcement. Sometimes, these developments could be a matter of perception or semantics; at other times, facts on the ground may actually be changing. “Uncertainty about enforcement on TRID mirrors the uncertainty on the rule itself. TRID has been an extremely complex regulation for the industry to implement,” American Land Title Association CEO Michelle Korsmo told Inside the CFPB. “ALTA has continuously encouraged the CFPB to provide more written guidance on the 1,888-page ...

June 24, 2016 - Inside MBS & ABS

U.S. Court Shifts Discovery Obligation to MBS Plaintiff, NY Court Denies JP Morgan, ACLU in MBS Case

A federal appeals court in New York this week will hear arguments from African-American subprime borrowers in Detroit in connection with a proposed class action challenging Morgan Stanley’s mortgage securitization practices during the subprime mortgage boom. The American Civil Liberties Union and its partners are seeking class-action status for the borrowers’ Fair Housing Act claims, which were initially rejected by a lower court. The court previously ruled that each borrower would have to sue on his or her own. The issue on appeal at the U.S. Court of Appeals for the Second Circuit is...

June 24, 2016 - Inside MBS & ABS

SFIG Publishes Standards to Help Non-Agency MBS Market Address TRID Issues, But CFPB Guidance Seen as Critical

The Structured Finance Industry Group late last week published a final draft of the standards for due diligence firms to use when testing loans for compliance with the Truth in Lending Act/Real Estate Settlement Procedures Act disclosure rule. “The underlying premise of this documentation is to establish a best practices approach to pre-securitization testing logic that will drive the due diligence conducted by third-party review firms,” SFIG said. The RMBS 3.0 TRID Compliance Review Scope documentation addresses...

June 23, 2016 - Inside Mortgage Finance

CFPB Seeks to Protect its Privileged Supervisory Records in Case Against Ocwen Loan Servicing

Earlier this month, the Consumer Financial Protection Bureau asked to intervene in a federal whistleblower case brought against Ocwen Loan Servicing in order to protect the confidentiality of its supervisory information. “The bureau seeks to intervene for the limited purpose of invoking the bank examination privilege and the bureau’s regulations to protect confidential and privileged bureau supervisory records and information related to the bureau’s supervision of Ocwen,” the CFPB said in its motion filed in U.S. District Court for the Eastern District of Texas, Sherman Division. Counsel for the relators in the case, Michael Fisher and Brian Bullock, and the defendants, Ocwen Loan Servicing and Ocwen Financial Corp., told...

June 23, 2016 - Inside Mortgage Finance

Slow Judicial Foreclosure Process Seen as Helping To Prevent Housing-Price Bubbles in Certain States

The slow foreclosure timelines in states with a judicial foreclosure process appear to have a silver lining: home-price bubbles are more prevalent in other states, according to Fitch Ratings. In a report released this week, analysts at the rating service said home prices nationally appear to be on solid footing, although some regional pockets of price risk are growing, primarily in states in the West and Southwest. Fitch said...

June 17, 2016 - Inside FHA/VA Lending

CA Realtors Seek Rule to Prohibit PACE Lien Seniority over FHA Lien

The California Association of Realtors renewed its push for rules addressing the proliferation of FHA-insured mortgages that have Property Assessed Clean Energy super liens. In a recent letter to Office of Management and Budget Director Shaun Donovan, the CAR requested that both FHA and the Department of Housing and Urban Development adopt policy that is consistent with the Federal Housing Finance Agency’s existing policy on PACE liens. Specifically, such a policy would prohibit the use of PACE encumbrances with a “super lien” priority over mortgage financing. The group also urged HUD to issue guidelines directing FHA lenders and servicers not to place PACE liens above any mortgage insured by FHA. The CAR expressed concern about how PACE liens might affect the FHA Mutual Mortgage Insurance Fund, which is currently recovering from years of losses. “If the ..

June 17, 2016 - Inside FHA/VA Lending

HOAs Required to Disclose VA, FHA Certification of Condo Projects

A new California law requiring condominium homeowner associations to disclose to their members whether the VA or the FHA has certified their buildings will soon take effect.Starting July 1, 2016, California HOAs will have to disclose in their annual budget report whether or not their condominium projects have been approved for VA or FHA financing. Gov. Jerry Brown, D, signed Assembly Bill 596 into law in August last year to encourage more veterans and first-time homebuyers to purchase condominiums and take advantage of the benefits of government-backed home financing. In signing the measure into law, Brown expressed hopes that condominium HOAs will step up their certification or recertification process. Assemblyman Tom Daly, D-Anaheim, author of the bill, estimates there are 28,000 condo projects in the Golden State, and only a third are FHA-certified. There are far fewer projects that are ...

June 17, 2016 - Inside FHA/VA Lending

USDA Securitization Down in 1Q16, Agency to Lower Premium, Fees

Ginnie Mae securitization of rural home loans got off to a wobbly start in the first quarter of 2016 as securitization volume fell 13.8 percent from the prior quarter, according to an Inside FHA/VA Lending analysis of Ginnie data. Approximately $3.9 billion in loans with a USDA guarantee were securitized during the first three months, with the top five issuers accounting for $2.1 billion of mortgage-backed securities produced by the segment during the period. USDA securitization volume dropped 9.2 percent year over year. Top USDA issuer Chase Home Finance accounted for $1.2 billion of securitized rural housing loans, while PennyMac, in distant second place, finished the quarter with $378.5 million. Wells Fargo ($294.0 million), Pacific Union Financial ($122.8 million) and Amerihome Mortgage ($102.2 million), in sequential order, comprised the rest of the top five issuers. Pacific Union climbed over ...

June 17, 2016 - Inside FHA/VA Lending

Maximum Civil Penalties for HUD, FHA Violations Set to Increase

FHA lenders will face stiffer maximum monetary penalties later this year for various violations of agency rules and regulations. The higher monetary penalties are the result of legislation signed into law late last year requiring federal agencies to adjust the current maximum penalty amounts for inflation in order to maintain their deterrent effect. Specifically, the Federal Civil Penalties Inflation Adjustment Act of 2015 (2015 Act) requires federal agencies to adjust the level of civil monetary penalties with an initial “catch-up” adjustment through an interim final rule and subsequent annual adjustments for inflation. The interim final rules with the initial penalty adjustments must be published by July 1, 2016. The new penalty levels must take effect no later than Aug. 1, 2016. Additionally, agencies are required to make annual inflation adjustments, starting Jan. 15, 2017, and for each year going forward. The adjustments will ...

June 17, 2016 - Inside MBS & ABS

TRID Liability High and Uncertain, Industry Hopes For Clarity and Resolution With Next Rulemaking

The mortgage industry and secondary-market investors continue to struggle with uncertainty over the degree of liability for errors in complying with the Consumer Financial Protection Bureau’s integrated-disclosure rule, commonly known as TRID. Many hope the pending TRID 2.0 rulemaking expected from the CFPB this July will clarify and resolve the exasperating ambiguity and at least let industry participants and investors know exactly where they stand and what risks they are taking on. One of the most important areas for investors is contractual liability. “Under most mortgage loan purchase agreements, there is a representation and warranty for absolute compliance [or] a signed agreement saying that you’re only liable for material violations,” said Richard Horn, a Washington, DC, attorney. Speaking at this week’s American Bankers Association conference, the former CFPB official said, “But whatever the agreement, you still have contractual liability for the loans that you sell, so keep that in mind.” Civil liability is...

June 13, 2016 - Inside the CFPB

News in Brief

Compass Point predicts that CFPB will lose its dispute with PHH. The CFPB is hosting an eRegulation webinar. HUD and First Citizens Bank (SC) resolve a fair lending complaint spurred by HMDA data. And CFPB staff exit for SunTrust and JH Capital Group.

June 10, 2016 - Inside The GSEs

Judge Orders FHFA, Treasury to Produce More Documents

A judge overseeing a key GSE shareholder lawsuit says she will look at another batch of government documents to determine whether they should be made available to the plaintiffs. The Federal Housing Finance Agency and Treasury Department are opposing the decision. Judge Margaret Sweeney’s May 20 order, in the Fairholme Funds, Inc. v. The United States case, requests that the defendants provide the court with hard copies of some of the documents listed in the ...

June 10, 2016 - Inside The GSEs

FHFA’s Attempt to Consolidate Shareholder Cases Denied

A key judicial review panel last week said the Federal Housing Finance Agency’s March bid to consolidate all the GSE shareholder lawsuits and transfer them to one court was “inappropriate” and rejected the government’s request. The Judicial Panel on Multidistrict Litigation said that the government’s case for centralization was not strong enough. “On the basis of the papers filed and hearing session held, we conclude that centralization is not necessary for the ...


The yield on the benchmark 10-year Treasury fell to all-time low of 1.34% recently. How much better will originations be at your shop in the second half compared to 1H, if at all?

Better by 1% to 10%.
Better by 11% to 25%.
Off the charts better. Applications are great now.
Worse than 1H, but not by much.
A lot worse. But not sure on the damage.

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