The Lede

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MBA Economist is Mostly Optimistic on Housing’s Future
National Mortgage Professional, Jan. 26, 2018--Phil HallThe near-term future for the housing market is mostly healthy, announced Mortgage Bankers Association Chief Economist Mike Fratantoni, although some troubling issues have yet to abate.
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U.S. Regulators Ready to Ease check on Property Values
Reuters, Jan. 26, 2018--Patrick RuckerU.S. bank regulators plan to relax commercial real estate lending rules by allowing more deals to go ahead without an independent appraisal of the property's value, according to several sources familiar with the discussions.
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SoFi Buys Teams From Mortgage Startup Clara to Boost Offerings
Bloomberg, Jan. 26, 2018--Selina Wang, Julie VerhaeSocial Finance Inc. has acquired the engineering and product teams of mortgage startup Clara Lending, bolstering the financial technology company's offerings beyond student-loan refinancing.
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New York, New Jersey, Connecticut Plan to Sue Federal Government over GOP Tax Bill
HousingWire, Jan. 26, 2017--Ben LaneThe tax bill installs a cap of $10,000 on SALT deductions, but several states (including New York, New Jersey, and Connecticut) have state and local tax burdens that far exceed $10,000.
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Adjustable-Rate Mortgages Make a Comeback
UExpress, Jan. 26, 2018--Lew SichelmanAdjustable-rate mortgages are back, especially in the higher price brackets around $453,000 and above. And as loan rates climb, as they are expected to do throughout the year, they probably will become more popular.
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Mortgage Firms Change CEOs, Presidents
Mortgage Daily, Jan. 26, 2018--Sam GarciaThe latest executive appointments in the mortgage industry include presidents, chief executive officers and a chief operating officer. A top human resource job has been filled at a government-sponsored enterprise.
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LO to Testify Against Judge in Mortgage Fraud Case
Chicago Tribune, Jan. 26, 2018--Jason MeisnerA former associate of Cook County Judge Jessica Arong O'Brien pleaded guilty Friday to her role in a $1.4 million mortgage fraud scheme and is expected to testify at O'Brien's criminal trial next month.
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U.S. Mortgage Slowdown Prompts Job Alert
Financial Times, Jan. 28, 2018--Alistair Gray (subscription)Thousands of jobs in the U.S. mortgage sector have been put at risk as lenders prepare fo the weakest year for refinancings since the turn of the century.
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mPower Survey: 75% of Women Mortgage Professionals Experience Sexual Harassment
HousingWire, Jan. 26, 2018--Caroline BasileIn an article for MBA Insights, Mortgage Bankers Association Chief Operating Officer Marcia Davies explained the need for the survey and the need to have a productive conversation about sexual harassment in the workplace.
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GDP Growth Below Expectations in Fourth Quarter of 2017
The Hill, Jan. 26, 2018--Naomi JagodaGross domestic product grew at an annual rate of 2.6 percent in the fourth quarter, the Commerce Department announced Friday, below economists' projections of about 3 percent.
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