Industry Briefs Nov. 25, 2020

FHFA Releases FY 2020 Performance & Accountability Report

The Federal Housing Finance Agency released its annual Performance and Accountability Report, which details FHFA’s activities as regulator of the Federal Home Loan Bank System and as regulator and conservator of Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac during fiscal year 2020.

For the th consecutive year, FHFA received an unmodified audit opinion on its FY 2020 financial statements from the U.S. Government Accountability Office. Included in the unmodified opinion, GAO noted no material weaknesses or significant deficiencies in FHFA’s internal controls. GAO also found no instances of reportable noncompliance with the applicable laws and regulations it tested.

The report can be accessed at 2020 Performance and Accountability Report.

ICE Mortgage Technology Releases Encompass 20.2

Ellie Mae, Pleasanton, Calif., now ICE Mortgage Technology, announced the Encompass 20.2 Major Release will include enhancements for lenders to boost productivity across lending and investing workflows.

Enhancements offer lenders flexibility to support an omni-channel approach and the ability to design around business process terms and workflows for a better user experience. These conditions are available in Encompass, Encompass LO Connect and Encompass TPO Connect. The new release also focuses on reducing the time it takes for lenders to save and open loans as well as how lenders order and manage documents. The new document viewer with cloud storage functionality further contributes to gaining efficiencies when managing documents. 

NotaryCam Certifies Compliance with MISMO RON Standards for Real Estate Transactions

NotaryCam, Newport Beach, Calif., completed the Mortgage Industry Standard Maintenance Organization (MISMO) Remote Online Notarization (RON) Software Compliance Certification Program. The program was designed to increase adoption of RON-enabled digital mortgage closings and support the integrity and scalability of eMortgages. In addition, the certification provides clarity to mortgage industry participants regarding which providers comply with MISMO’s RON standards and reduces the resource burden of executing duplicative assessment, certification and approval processes of RON providers.

Within its eClose 360 platform and in accordance with MISMO standards, NotaryCam provides continuous, synchronous audio and video feeds that contribute to a smooth closing process and to required credential analysis and authentication procedures. eClose 360 automatically securely records significant actions taken as part of the RON transaction as part of the Audit Trail. NotaryCam’s security measures employ data protection safeguards as well as provide a tamper-evident method by which a notary can export the Notarial Records for functions such as county recording. Additionally, documents notarized by NotaryCam include a statement meeting the needs of both federal and state regulations affirming the use of RON technology.

Zest AI Joins Partners With Freddie Mac

Zest AI announced a partnership with Freddie Mac in which Freddie Mac will leverage Zest’s machine learning tools to improve its decisioning models for managing risk.

The Zest Model Management System enables lenders to analyze credit data to help increase approval rates and reduce risk of faulty credit decisions. The platform also provides the ability to explain data modeling results to measure business impact and help comply with regulatory requirements.

Calyx Announces Path Integration with Mortech Product and Pricing Engine

Calyx, Dallas, announced its Path loan origination software is now integrated with Marksman, a product and pricing engine from Mortech, Lincoln, Neb.

Path is a cloud-based platform designed to simplify the loan process while providing lenders controls and flexibility they need to run their business. The data-driven LOS is configurable to the lenders’ specific needs, including workflows, roles, organizational structure and compliance controls. As a result of this integration, Path users will now be able to access accurate, real-time product and pricing information from leading wholesalers, correspondents and investors via the Mortech platform.

National MI Integrates with LONPricer to Streamline Originations

National Mortgage Insurance Corp., Emeryville, Calif., is now integrated with Loan Originator Networks LLC, which creates websites for mortgage lenders and integrates with their loan origination systems. LON worked with National MI to offer a new functionality that provides National MI’s risk-based pricing engine, RateGPS, in LONPricer, a platform that handles all mortgage channels—retail, wholesale, correspondent and consumer direct. 

The integration brings National MI’s real-time, risk-based mortgage insurance pricing to LONPricer. LON is set up to capture the growing wholesale market by providing wholesale lenders and brokers with the ability to transact in a very efficient and transparent way.

Black Knight: Forbearance Volumes Edge Up

Black Knight, Jacksonville, Fla., said after falling by 273,000 (9%) over the past two weeks, forbearance volumes edged slightly upward last week. As of Nov. 17, there are 2.77 million forbearances, representing 5.2% of all active loans.

While this figure is down significantly from the peak of 4.76 million in late May, last week saw increases of 15,000 for FHA/VA loans; 14,000 for portfolio/private label securities loans; and 1,000 for GSE loans.

Black Knight said despite the weekly increase, the number of active forbearances remains down 7% (-212,000) from the same time last month. Eighty-two percent of active forbearance cases have had their terms extended.

ReverseVision Supports HECM Lenders’ Transition from LIBOR to CMT Index

ReverseVision, San Diego, updated all documents that reference an index to support both the Constant Maturity Treasury (CMT) and London Interbank Offer Rate (LIBOR) indexes.

The update was made in response to Ginnie Mae’s All Participant Memorandum (APM) 20-12, which deems LIBOR-based adjustable rate HECM loans not securitized on or after January 1, 2021, as ineligible for pooling regardless of their origination or FHA case number assignment date. Adjustable rate HECMs that rely on the CMT index will be eligible for pooling without restriction. The LIBOR index is expected to sunset at the end of 2021.

ReverseVision has conducted an extensive quality assurance inspection of all standard documents affected by an index change to ensure lenders’ seamless transition from LIBOR to CMT. ReverseVision will update custom documents and private reverse mortgage program documents upon request free of charge. Additionally, ReverseVision has enhanced document language and reference points in anticipation of a future migration to the Secure Overnight Financing Rate (SOFR) index.

ENACOMM Enhances Fraud Protection through New Boku Partnership

ENACOMM, Tulsa, Okla., said its Fraud Control Module users will have an additional weapon to use against fraudsters, thanks to a new partnership between ENACOMM and Boku. Financial institution and credit card company customers of ENACOMM can use Boku’s identity verification solutions in conjunction with the FCM to help reduce fraud and account takeovers.

The ENACOMM Fraud Control Module uses customizable fraud indicators to identify, report and stop suspected fraudsters with rule-based actions. FCM users can deploy Boku as an additional layer of security, to quickly verify legitimate users and identify likely fraudsters using signals from mobile service providers. Through its global network of mobile carriers, Boku provides real-time signals to confirm that consumers are, in fact, who they say they are. These signals now power ENACOMM applications to change behavior discreetly, ensuring that fraudsters are unable to circumvent the extra security.

Quantarium Partners with Valligent Technologies

Quantarium, Seattle, partnered with Valligent Technologies to launch QVM-Insights, a condition-adjusted Quantarium Valuation Model for equity lending, broker price opinions and real estate owned valuations.

Quantarium’s AI approach runs hundreds of thousands of generations to understand and optimize information on micro-markets at the neighborhood, ZIP code or county level. QVM-Insights leverages real-time streaming data provided by Valligent’s virtual inspection, combined with its property data lake to validate and learn what is valuable within the data. It also factors in the effects of many local events such as foreclosures and recent sales.

CENTURY 21 Tri-Cities, Bray Real Estate Launch Adwerx Enterprise Automated Advertising Platform

Adwerx, a provider of localized digital advertising for more than 200,000 real estate agents and brokers, launched online listing and retargeting advertisements for CENTURY 21 Tri-Cities, providing agents with the ability to build their brands and market their properties to consumers who are spending time online.

Bray Real Estate is also implementing the Adwerx Enterprise Automated Advertising Platform, including automated online ads for new listings, the use of website retargeting and access to Streaming TV services.

The Adwerx Enterprise Automated Advertising Platform boosts awareness through impactful retargeting technology. Once a prospect visits an agent’s website, custom branded ads accompany them throughout their online journey, elevating the agent’s profile by optimizing visibility and reminding that prospect of the agent whose page they recently visited.

First American Docutech Announces New Integration With Encompass by Ellie Mae

First American Docutech, Scottsdale, Ariz., announced a new streamlined integration with Encompass loan origination software by Ellie Mae, Pleasanton, Calif.

Through the integration, Encompass lenders can accelerate their closing process by implementing First American Docutech’s suite of digital mortgage and closing platforms. The integration updates key disclosure tracking fields and automatically delivers documents into Encompass.

Fannie Mae: U.S. Economic Health Heavily Dependent on COVID-19 Path

Fannie Mae, Washington, D.C., said response by consumers and policymakers to rising COVID-19 case counts is likely to determine whether currently projected improvements to U.S. economic growth materialize.

While the Fannie Mae Economic and Strategic Research Group expects the virus’ resurgence to drag on consumer spending in coming months, absent spring-like behavioral shifts and lockdown measures, it expects that the further recovery of the domestic labor market and built-up household savings will likely be sufficient to drive continued real GDP growth, which is now forecast at 3.3 percent for full-year 2021, slightly below last month’s projection, and 3.0 percent for full-year 2022.

After a sharp rebound in the third quarter, housing is expected to demonstrate continued strength through the rest of 2020 and into the new year. For the fourth quarter and then first quarter 2021, the ESR Group upgraded its new and existing home sales forecasts – due to stronger-than-expected sales to date – as well as its mortgage origination forecasts for full-year 2020 and 2021. However, the ESR Group noted that the home sales pace may have peaked in September and expects a moderate slowdown to be underway.