The Lede

Top National News

Mortgage Demand Falls as Interest Rates Flatten
CNBC, Aug. 21, 2019--Diana OlickOverall mortgage application volume decreased 0.9% last week compared with the previous week, according to the Mortgage Bankers Association's seasonally adjusted index. Volume was still 70% higher annually, thanks to a stronger overall refinance market this year.
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Citigroup, Credit Suisse Re-Enter Risky Home Loans Market
Yahoo! Finance, Aug. 21, 2019Citigroup C and Credit Suisse CS have re-entered the risky mortgage loans market or non-qualified mortgage, wherein they provide new home loans to borrowers with poor credit scores. However, per Mike Fratantoni, chief economist with the Mortgage Bankers Association, these non-QM loans are not like the Alt-A/subprime loans that were distributed prior to the housing crash.
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Fed Officials Viewed July Rate Cut as ‘Recalibration’ of Policy
Wall Street Journal, Aug. 21, 2019--Nick Timiraos (subscription)Federal Reserve officials saw their move to cut interest rates last month as a "recalibration" rather than the start of a more aggressive easing cycle and were reluctant at their latest policy meeting to say how future moves would unfold.
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Fannie and Freddie Plan Is Likely Released Next Month
Wall Street Journal, Aug. 21, 2019--Andrew Ackerman (subscription)The proposal comes more than a decade after the government seized the mortgage-finance firms to save them from collapse. It would likely seek to put the companies on a sounder financial footing and then release them from government control if Congress doesn't enact a more fundamental overhaul.
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Most Homeowners Underestimate Hurricane-Related Damage Costs
National Mortgage Professional, Aug. 21, 2019--Phil HallThis year's hurricane season is now underway through November, and while there are no storms on the near-term horizon that should raise red flags, a new study by found many homeowners in high-risk states expressed either ignorance or nonchalance regarding the property damage costs of hurricanes.
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RMBS Trustees Worry that Consent Process Will Slow Down Libor Switch
National Mortgage News, Aug. 21, 2019--Brad Finkelstein (subscription)Trustees are concerned about obtaining proper consents from legacy residential mortgage-backed securities investors in a timely fashion in order to make the switch from Libor to another index, Fitch Ratings said.
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