Browse articles from all of our Newsletters related to Legislation.

January 16, 2017 - Inside the CFPB

CFPB News in Brief

Bureau Mulling Possible Changes to HMDA Resubmission Guidelines. It’s been roughly one year since the CFPB issued a request for information regarding Home Mortgage Disclosure Act resubmission guidelines, and the bureau has yet to decide which way to proceed. The agency received 31 comments in response to the RFI, which was published Jan. 12, 2016, in the Federal Register. Commenters included HMDA reporters, industry trade groups, and consumer groups.... Revisions to Interagency Compliance Rating System Still Pending. The CFPB and the other members of the FFIEC continue to review public comments on their April 29, 2016, proposal to revise the existing Uniform Interagency Consumer Compliance Rating System to reflect regulatory, supervisory, technological, and market changes since the system was established....

January 16, 2017 - Inside the CFPB

PHH Corp. May Have an Ally In Case Against CFPB

While many in the mortgage industry wait for the District of Columbia Circuit Court of Appeals to decide whether to rehear the arguments of the CFPB in its wrangling with PHH, the plaintiffs in State National Bank of Big Spring, Texas, et al. v. Lew, et al. have stepped back onto the legal stage at the district court level. Specifically, “Plaintiffs respectfully move [the U.S. District Court for the District of Columbia] to hold a status conference at its earliest convenience to determine how this case ... can be most efficiently adjudicated in light of the CFPB’s petition for en banc review of the panel decision in PHH Corp. v. CFPB,” State National Bank and its parties asked the appeals ...

January 13, 2017 - Inside MBS & ABS

Basel Capital Requirements’ Impact on Non-Agency MBS Activities Uncertain, According to GAO

Capital requirements regarding bank holdings of non-agency MBS increased significantly after federal regulators implemented Basel III reforms in 2014. And while banks have largely been reluctant to re-enter the market for non-agency MBS issuance, a recent report by the Government Accountability Office suggests that the impact of bank involvement in the non-agency MBS market is unclear. The GAO was asked to explain how capital requirements for a mortgage depend on how the loan is financed and how the requirements have changed since the financial crisis. The report was requested by Sen. Richard Shelby, R-AL, who until recently was the chairman of the Senate Committee on Banking, Housing and Urban Affairs. The GAO noted...

January 12, 2017 - Inside Mortgage Finance

As Trump Administration Prepares to Take Reins, New Lineups on Capitol Hill Begin to Take Shape

With the formal transition of presidential power now a mere week away, Congressional Republicans and Democrats alike were busy this week reordering the teams that will take the field for the 115th Congress. Mortgage lenders are hopeful for at least some degree of regulatory relief from the Republican-controlled Congress and White House, but Democrats are vowing to defend the Dodd-Frank Act, one of the signature achievements of the outgoing Obama administration. Republicans in the House of Representatives got...

January 12, 2017 - Inside Mortgage Finance

With PHH Case Pending, Industry Officials Still Believe CFPB Should Give More RESPA Guidance

Mortgage compliance experts say there’s still a strong need for the Consumer Financial Protection Bureau to provide more guidance about acceptable business relations under Section 8 of the Real Estate Settlement Procedures Act. One of the issues that came to the fore in the bureau’s enforcement action against PHH Mortgage was lenders’ relationships under marketing services agreements. Even though banks these days may be using MSAs to a lesser extent than nonbanks, there is still a need for the CFPB to more clearly delineate do’s and don’ts. “On the lender side of the mortgage industry, there is...

January 6, 2017 - Inside Nonconforming Markets

Wide Variety Among Lenders on Jumbo Denials

The denial rate on jumbo mortgages varies significantly among lenders, according to an Inside Nonconforming Markets analysis of data from the Home Mortgage Disclosure Act. Among the top 25 lenders, denial rates for jumbo applications in 2015 ranged from a low of 2.3 percent to a high of 76.8 percent. Overall, the top 25 lenders denied 18.1 percent of the $367.49 billion in total unpaid principal balance for jumbo-mortgage ... [Includes one data chart]

January 6, 2017 - Inside MBS & ABS

Freddie Mac Issues Its First Risk-Sharing Security Backed by Seasoned Mortgages

In late December, Freddie Mac issued a $934.27 million security backed by seasoned mortgages. It was the first seasoned credit-risk transfer from the government-sponsored enterprise. While Freddie has issued fully guaranteed securitizations backed by seasoned mortgages, Freddie Mac Seasoned Credit Risk Transfer Trust, Series 2016-1 included tranches without a guarantee from the GSE, similar to a non-agency senior-sub MBS. The transaction included...

January 5, 2017 - Inside Mortgage Finance

FHFA Loosens Rules on FHLBank Advance Collateral And Servicing Transfers for Acquired Mortgages

The Federal Housing Finance Agency late last month issued two final rules that will give the Federal Home Loan Banks somewhat more flexibility in setting collateral requirements for advances and managing their acquired member assets (AMA). A new AMA rule was necessary because the Dodd-Frank Act requires financial regulators to remove references to ratings, which had been used in setting limits on their AMA programs, most of which involve purchases of mortgages from member institutions. Under the new rule, the FHLBanks will be able to choose their own models to determine credit enhancement requirements. The FHFA also deferred...

January 5, 2017 - Inside Mortgage Finance

As Legal Briefs Fly, Separation-of-Powers Question Becomes Pivotal Issue in PHH’s Dispute With CFPB

PHH Corp., the Department of Justice and the Consumer Financial Protection Bureau have, in recent weeks, gone back and forth with the filing of briefs on multiple angles associated with the legal dispute the lender has had with the CFPB over alleged violations of the Real Estate Settlement Procedures Act. However, it looks like the separation of powers under the U.S. Constitution will play a more decisive role in the outcome than will issues related to RESPA, according to some top legal observers. PHH and the DOJ both submitted responses to the District of Columbia Circuit Court of Appeals on Dec. 22, the deadline set by the court. The government is seeking an en banc review by the full appeals court of a ruling by a three-judge panel. In its brief, the mortgage lender said...

January 5, 2017 - Inside Mortgage Finance

Regulators Seek to Track Mortgage Process More Closely, Focusing on Time Between Origination and Final Funding

Regulators are working to get a better understanding about the ownership of mortgages, particularly for the span between origination and final funding, according to the Office of Financial Research. “Regulators now collect origination data and loan performance data about much of the home mortgage market,” the OFR said in its recently published 2016 financial stability report. “However, they do not collect data about ownership of a mortgage between origination and final funding. Information on this short phase in the life of a loan is needed for a full picture of risks.” The OFR, an office of the Treasury Department that was established by the Dodd-Frank Act, noted...

January 2, 2017 - Inside the CFPB

Industry Reps, Allies Set the Stage For Changes to CFPB, Dodd-Frank

As 2016 drew to a close, various industry officials were busy making the case for legislation that would alter the structure of the CFPB and clip its wings as part of a strategy to scale back the Dodd-Frank Act and provide lenders with significant regulatory relief. Industry officials are confident they will encounter a more sympathetic White House with Donald Trump as the occupant. Analysts with Compass Point Research & Trading believe a number of important issues will be addressed as part of the final legislative regulatory relief package, including governance changes shifting the CFPB, as well as the Federal Housing Finance Agency and the Office of the Comptroller of the Currency, into commission structures. They also expect to see ...

January 2, 2017 - Inside the CFPB

New Prez Has the Power to Can Cordray Now, Professor Claims

Numerous experts, commenters and observers are under the assumption that President-elect Trump will have to let the courts reach a definitive legal decision on the PHH Corp. v. CFPB litigation before deciding whether to remove CFPB Director Richard Cordray without cause. However, that’s not the case, according to Aditya Bamzai, associate professor of law at the University of Virginia School of Law. In a recent online blog post, Bamzai said the (sometimes unstated) premise in various articles and reports is that the CFPB’s pending challenge to the panel decision somehow prevents any attempt to oust Cordray. “Such a premise appears to rest on two mistaken assumptions: that the president cannot exercise his removal authority absent an Article III judgment authorizing ...

January 2, 2017 - Inside the CFPB

Key Constitutional Question Warrants Rehearing, DOJ Says

The important constitutional issue of separation of powers, and the perhaps somewhat unorthodox manner in which the three-judge panel of the District of Columbia Circuit Court of Appeals concluded that the CFPB’s leadership structure is unconstitutional, justify the court granting the bureau’s request for a rehearing en banc in its dispute with PHH Corp., the U.S. Justice Department told the court. “The conferral of broad policymaking and enforcement authority on a single person below the president, whom the president may not remove except for cause ... raises a significant constitutional question that the Supreme Court has not yet squarely confronted,” the DOJ said. To date, the nation’s highest court has sanctioned a limitation on the power to remove principal officers ...

January 2, 2017 - Inside the CFPB

PHH Says Panel Got it Right, No Need to Rehear En Banc

The long-running legal confrontation between PHH Corp. and the CFPB took another turn right before the holidays, with the nation’s eighth largest lender telling the District of Columbia Circuit Court of Appeals that its three-judge panel got it right in October when it ruled the CFPB’s leadership structure is unconstitutional. “The panel grounded its decision in existing Supreme Court precedent and other settled authority,” the company said. “It remedied a violation of the separation of powers by allowing the agency to continue to operate subject to basic constitutional constraints, without addressing the decision’s effect on past actions.” Further, “the panel interpreted the Real Estate Settlement Procedures Act according to its plain language and consistently with every other circuit to consider ...

December 16, 2016 - Inside MBS & ABS

Non-Agency Participants Cool on Parrott’s Proposal to Revive Non-Agency MBS Market

Jim Parrott, a senior fellow at the Urban Institute and owner of Falling Creek Advisors, last week outlined three steps industry participants and federal regulators could take to boost issuance of non-agency MBS. The proposal involves the establishment of a self-regulatory organization, regulatory relief for MBS that meet standards set by the SRO, and allowing non-agency MBS to be issued through the common securitization platform being developed by Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac. Parrott detailed...

December 15, 2016 - Inside Mortgage Finance

Low Appraisals Result in More Than 10 Percent Of Purchase-Mortgage Applications Being Denied

Appraisal-related issues cause more than one out of every 10 purchase-mortgage applications to be denied, according to CoreLogic. Below-contract appraisals comprised 11.3 percent of the first-lien purchase-loan appraisals ordered through the CoreLogic/FNC Collateral Management System, according to Yanling Mayer, director of research in CoreLogic’s office of chief economist. The CMS is a workflow and compliance platform used by many lenders, servicers and appraisal management companies. Mayer noted...

December 15, 2016 - Inside Mortgage Finance

CFPB Urged to Issue Guidance, Step Up Oversight As Lenders Increase Use of Private-Label Servicing

The growing popularity of private-label servicing and the way it’s offered to lenders are raising regulatory questions, underscoring the need for guidance and supervision, according to legal experts. With the most comprehensive offerings of private-label servicing, the borrower never knows the subservicer exists, and that’s the point of the arrangement, according to Craig Nazzaro, of counsel at the Atlanta-based law firm Baker Donelson. Nazzaro attributes...

December 12, 2016 - Inside the CFPB

Other News in Brief

CFPB Issues Small Entity Compliance Guide for Its Mortgage Servicing Final Rule. The Consumer Financial Protection Bureau has published an updated version of its Small Entity Compliance Guide for its 2016 mortgage servicing final rule, incorporating amendments made to mortgage servicing provisions in Regulation X and Regulation Z. ... Bureau, Other Regulators, Hold Exemption Threshold for Appraisals for Higher-Priced Mortgage Loans Steady. The CFPB, the Federal Reserve and the Office of the Comptroller of the Currency decided to maintain at $25,500 the exemption threshold for appraisals for higher-priced mortgage loans under the Truth in Lending Act (Regulation Z). ...

December 12, 2016 - Inside the CFPB

Industry’s TRID Improvements Bring Loan Defects Down in Second Qtr.

TRID-related mortgage defects dropped slightly during the second quarter of 2016, the first decline since the rule kicked in Oct. 3, 2015, ARMCO, a risk management technology vendor, said in a new quality control analysis. “TRID-related defects continue to be the leading area of concern in post-closing reviews; however, corrective action planning taken by the lending community has produced positive results that can now be visualized in the 2Q data,” said Phil McCall, chief operating officer at the company. According to the report, the overall critical defect rate dropped to 1.63 percent for the period ending June 30, 2016, the most recent period for which relevant data were available, thus ending the upward swing that stretched back to 3Q15. The ...

December 12, 2016 - Inside the CFPB

TRID 2.0: The Comments: Urgent TRID Issues Still Must be Addressed, Trade Group Says

Although the CFPB said it was not going to revisit the TRID rule in its entirety when it issued its clarifying rulemaking earlier this year, a number of industry players were still disappointed that more problems were not dealt with. At the top of a list provided by the Community Mortgage Lenders of America of issues that still need to be addressed is loans submitted by mortgage brokers. “An issue that continues to vex the industry is how to treat loans from mortgage brokers that are submitted following rejection by another lender,” the trade group said. “As is typically the case, the submission of a loan to a wholesale lender by a mortgage broker, following rejection of the same loan ...

December 12, 2016 - Inside the CFPB

TRID 2.0: The Comments: Clarifying Proposal Doesn’t Address Secondary Market Anxieties

The TRID 2.0 clarifying rulemaking proposal fails to alleviate most of the concerns that investors in the secondary mortgage market have about their potential legal liability, according to Pacific Investment Management Company. In its recent comment letter to the CFPB, PIMCO noted, “In most cases, the errors that relate to the [TRID] disclosures are subtle and technical in nature and do not result in corresponding consumer harm or confusion. Nevertheless, because the … rules implement provisions of the Truth in Lending Act that may carry actual or statutory damages and assignee liability to purchasers, there are serious concerns among secondary purchasers due to the rules’ expansion of liabilities in mortgage origination and investing.” Moreover, asset managers and other loan purchasers ...

December 12, 2016 - Inside the CFPB

CFPB Issues New Exam Procedures for Reverse Mortgage Servicing

The CFPB recently ditched the antiquated method for assessing compliance with reverse mortgage servicing rules in favor of new examination procedures. Depending on the scope, each reverse mortgage servicing exam will include one or more of eight modules. Subject areas represented by separate modules include servicing transfers, loan ownership transfers and escrow disclosures; account maintenance, payments and disclosures; consumer inquiries, complaints and error resolution procedures; and maintenance of escrow accounts or set-asides and insurance products. Other module segments address information sharing and privacy; events of default and death of borrower; foreclosures; and examiner conclusions and wrap-up. The revised guidance reminds CFPB personnel of their examination objectives, one of which is to identify acts or practices that materially increase the risk ...

December 12, 2016 - Inside the CFPB

Democrat Lawmakers, Advocates File Briefs in Support of CFPB

Current and former Democrat members of Congress recently submitted a joint brief to the D.C. Circuit Court of Appeals in support of an en banc rehearing in the PHH Corp. v. CFPB case, including Dodd-Frank drafters and supporters, such as one of the bill’s namesakes, former Rep. Barney Frank, along with Sen. Elizabeth Warren, both from Massachusetts. The lawmakers argued that this case presents “a question of exceptional importance” and requires an en banc rehearing because the three-judge panel’s decision restructures the CFPB in a way that conflicts with Congress’s legislative plan. “By severing the for-cause removal provision, the panel decision fundamentally altered the CFPB’s structure in a way that is at odds with Congress’s design and will undermine the ...

December 12, 2016 - Inside the CFPB

PHH, Solicitor General to Respond to CFPB Appeals Court Directive

PHH Corp. has until Dec. 22, 2016, to respond to an order by the District of Columbia Circuit Court of Appeals related to its battle with the CFPB over alleged violations of the Real Estate Settlement Procedures Act. The appeals court had directed the lender to reply to the bureau’s petition for an en banc rehearing of the recent ruling by a three-judge panel of the court. Back in October, the panel determined that two aspects of the CFPB’s structure – the dismissal of the director of the agency only for cause and the single directorship as opposed to a multi-member bipartisan commission – were unconstitutional. Additionally, the judges found in favor of the company’s arguments, among others, around the correct interpretations ...

December 9, 2016 - Inside Mortgage Trends

TRID Defects Dip, Improvements Take Hold

Defects in mortgage loans produced under the Consumer Financial Protection Bureau’s integrated disclosure rule fell modestly in the second quarter of 2016, after peaking in the first three months of the year. This is the first such drop since the TRID rule took effect in October 2015, according to a new quality control analysis from ARMCO, a risk management technology vendor. “TRID-related defects continue to be the leading area of concern in post-closing reviews; however ...

December 9, 2016 - Inside MBS & ABS

Commercial Mortgage Lending Could Top $515 Billion This Year, but CMBS Issuance Lags as Lenders Keep Whole Loans

Origination of commercial mortgages could reach $515 billion this year, a slight improvement over 2015, but more lenders – life insurance companies and banks, in particular – are keeping the loans on their books, which doesn’t bode well for CMBS issuance. It’s the same conundrum facing the jumbo residential market: plenty of lending, but not so much in the way of securitization. As Inside MBS & ABS reported recently, issuance of CMBS increased...

December 8, 2016 - Inside Mortgage Finance

PHH, U.S. Solicitor General Due to Respond to Appeals Ruling in Long-Running Case With CFPB

The DC Circuit Court of Appeals recently ordered PHH Corp. to respond to the Consumer Financial Protection Bureau’s petition for an en banc rehearing in the long-running dispute over alleged violations of the Real Estate Settlement Procedures Act. The lender’s response is due late this week. The court has also invited the U.S. solicitor general to weigh in on the constitutional and RESPA questions associated with the case. No timetable was suggested. However, industry legal observers expect the USSG to respond promptly, given the pending change of presidential administrations, and to support the bureau’s positions. Attorneys at the BuckleySandler law firm noted...

December 8, 2016 - Inside Mortgage Finance

Trump Has Vowed to Clamp Down on Regulations, But He Faces Limited Unilateral Powers, Long Odds

During his successful campaign for the White House, then-candidate Donald Trump won applause and support from the business community for his promise to substantially cut back on federal regulations. Many in the mortgage lending community had hopes the plan would include some relief from the mortgage regulations issued by the Consumer Financial Protection Bureau. Among other things, Trump said he would issue a temporary moratorium on “new agency regulations that are not compelled by Congress or public safety [and] cancel immediately all illegal and overreaching executive orders.” Richard Horn, who worked on the CFPB’s integrated-disclosure rulemaking known as TRID, said...

December 8, 2016 - Inside Mortgage Finance

Agency Jumbo Production Outpaced Traditional Jumbo Originations in 3Q16, Higher Conforming Limits Ahead

The one weak spot in the mortgage market during the third quarter was in traditional jumbo originations, a trend that was reinforced by a significant increase in production of agency mortgages in high-cost markets that exceeded $417,000. An estimated $101.0 billion of non-agency jumbo home loans were originated during the third quarter, down 1.9 percent from the previous quarter. At the same time, production of conforming-jumbo mortgages – loans greater than $417,000 that were securitized by Fannie Mae, Freddie Mac and Ginnie Mae – jumped 27.7 percent from the second to the third quarter. Some of the disparity is...[Includes three data tables]


HUD has announced a 25 basis point cut in FHA premiums, which is slated to take effect in late January. Is your lending shop for or against a cut in FHA premiums?

For. It should help lending volumes.
Against. The private MI sector should take on this risk, not the government.
Too early to say.
I believe the new White House may scuttle the idea so it doesn’t matter.

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