Midyear Mort­gage Re­view

Take a look back at the top sto­ries shap­ing the mort­gage in­dus­try dur­ing the first half of 2017.

National Mortgage News - - Screenshots -

Trump ad­min­is­tra­tion takes shape

Mo­ments af­ter Trump’s swear­ing in, HUD sus­pended a 25-ba­sis-point cut to Fed­eral Hous­ing Ad­min­is­tra­tion in­sur­ance pre­mi­ums that was an­nounced, but not in­sti­tuted, dur­ing the wan­ing days of now-former HUD Sec­re­tary Ju­lian Cas­tro’s term un­der the Obama ad­min­is­tra­tion.

What’s next?

Trea­sury Sec­re­tary Steven Mnuchin has set a goal of tack­ling hous­ing fi­nance re­form within the next year. The roles of FHA com­mis­sioner and Gin­nie Mae pres­i­dent still need to be filled to serve un­der Hous­ing and Ur­ban Devel­op­ment Sec­re­tary Ben Car­son.

Ris­ing rates, low in­ven­tory fuel sharp drop in orig­i­na­tions

Si­mul­ta­ne­ous in­creases to in­ter­est rates and home prices have cre­ated an af­ford­abil­ity cri­sis na­tion­wide. Com­bined with a short­age of avail­able hous­ing in­ven­tory and the pur­chase mort­gage mar­ket that was ex­pected to emerge in 2017 has been ane­mic.

Dodd-Frank do-over

With the Repub­li­cans in con­trol of the White House and both cham­bers of Congress, over­haul­ing the Dodd- Frank Act has been a top pri­or­ity.

CFPB: the Con­sti­tu­tion, Cor­dray and con­sent or­ders

The Con­sumer Fi­nan­cial Pro­tec­tion Bu­reau’s long-run­ning bat­tle with PHH Corp. en­tered its third year and has fu­eled a tense stand­off be­tween Trump and CFPB Direc­tor Richard Cor­dray.

Citi calls it quits in ser­vic­ing

Cit­i­group is get­ting out of mort­gage ser­vic­ing, af­ter agree­ing to sell a $97 bil­lion mort­gage ser­vic­ing port­fo­lio to New Res­i­den­tial In­vest­ment Corp. and sub­ser­vice its re­main­ing ac­counts by the end of 2018.

More Ocwen scru­tiny

In April, the CFPB sued Ocwen, while reg­u­la­tors from more than 30 states is­sued cease-and-de­sist or­ders, all ac­cus­ing the com­pany of wide­spread ser­vic­ing er­rors such as send­ing in­ac­cu­rate monthly state­ments, im­prop­erly crediting pay­ments, and mis­han­dling taxes in es­crow ac­counts.

Ocwen fall­out

Ocwen’s stock price plum­meted on the news of the reg­u­la­tory ac­tion and the com­pany risked los­ing its big­gest cus­tomer, New Res­i­den­tial In­vest­ment Corp. In­stead, New Res­i­den­tial agreed to ac­quire a 5% stake in Ocwen and ex­tend its sub­ser­vic­ing re­la­tion­ship for five years.

New hope for hous­ing fi­nance re­form

Fed­eral Hous­ing Fi­nance Agency Direc­tor Mel Watt ap­pears poised for a show­down with Congress af­ter warn­ing that he is willing to act uni­lat­er­ally to re­build cap­i­tal at Fan­nie and Fred­die in or­der to pre­vent a po­ten­tial draw on the Trea­sury Depart­ment.

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