The Week Ahead Aug. 2, 2021: Five Things to Watch

Good morning! Welcome to the first week of August. While traditionally a “quiet” period here in Washington, as of late that term seems relative. Here are five topics we’re keeping an eye on:

First, the Mortgage Bankers Association has another busy week with reports and an important deadline coming up. The MBA weekly Forbearance & Call Volume Survey comes out this afternoon at 4:00 p.m. ET. The survey has shown drops in loans in forbearance for 21 consecutive weeks and has showed loans in forbearance at under 4 percent for the past month. MBA Chief Economist Mike Fratantoni will provide analysis and commentary in Tuesday’s MBA NewsLink.

MBA also releases its Weekly Mortgage Applications Survey this Wednesday, Aug. 4, with analysis and commentary from MBA Associate Vice President of Economic and Industry Forecasting Joel Kan.

Second, Congress is all set for its “traditional” August recess (or, as Congress likes to call it, “District Work Period”), but most lawmakers are sticking around this week to vote on a plateful of unfinished business—including a massive infrastructure bill that continues its two-steps-forward-one-step-back dance. Senate Majority Leader Chuck Schumer, D-N.Y., is now targeting Aug. 6 as the get-out-of-town date, although he might have trouble getting some vacation-minded senators to heed to that.

Third, the Senate Banking Committee didn’t get the recess memo, and have several hearings scheduled this week, including a mucho-importante nomination hearing for Julia Gordon as HUD Assistant Secretary/Federal Housing Commissioner.

MBA and nearly three dozen industry trade groups sent a letter last week to Senate leadership strongly urging Gordon’s confirmation, calling her “highly qualified for this important position.”

Also under consideration at this hearing: David Uejio as HUD Assistant Secretary (he currently serves as Acting Director of the Consumer Financial Protection Bureau); and Solomon Green as HUD Assistant Secretary.

The hearing takes place Thursday, Aug. 5 at 10:00 a.m. ET in Dirksen Senate Office Building 538 and can be accessed online here.

Also on Tuesday, Aug. 3, the Senate Banking Subcommittee on Financial Institutions and Consumer Protection holds a hearing on “Protecting Consumers from Financial Fraud and Scams in the Pandemic Recovery Economy.” Liz Coyle, Executive Director of Georgia Watch is slated to testify. The hearing begins at 2:30 p.m. ET and can be accessed online here.

On Tuesday, Aug. 3, the Banking Committee will hold a hearing on “Oversight of Regulators: Does our Financial System Work for Everyone?” 

Scheduled to testify: Todd M. Harper, Chair of the National Credit Union Administration; Jelena McWilliams, Chair of the Federal Deposit Insurance Corp.; and Michael J. Hsu, Acting Comptroller of the Office of the Comptroller of the Currency. The hearing begins at 10:00 a.m. ET in Dirksen 538 and can be accessed online here.

The House Financial Services Committee has no hearing scheduled until after the Labor Day holiday.

Fourth, Economic Reports. If it’s the first week of the month (it is!) then the theme is jobs. On Wednesday, Aug. 4, ADP issues its monthly National Employment Report. On Thursday, Aug. 5, the Labor Department issues its weekly Initial Claims report; and on Friday, Aug. 6, the Bureau of Labor Statistics issues its monthly Employment Report. MBA Chief Economist Mike Fratantoni will provide commentary and analysis on the Employment Report for the Monday, Aug. 9 edition of MBA NewsLink.

Other reports of interest this week: Construction (Monday, Aug. 2); Institute for Supply Management Manufacturing Index (Aug. 2); CoreLogic Home Price Index (Tuesday, Aug. 3); Manufacturing, Shipments & Orders (Aug. 3); ISM Non-Manufacturing Index (Wednesday, Aug. 4); Wholesale Trade (Friday, Aug. 6).

Fifth, the upcoming MBA Annual Convention & Expo, which takes place Oct. 17-20 at the San Diego Convention Center. Keynote speakers include New York Times best-selling authors Malcolm Gladwell and Brad Meltzer; and Academy Award- and Presidential Medal of Freedom Award-winning actress Rita Moreno.

Gladwell, whose newest book, The Bomber Mafia: A Dream, a Temptation, and the Longest Night of the Second World War, was inspired by the four-part series about General Curtis LeMay on his podcast “Revisionist History.” In it, Gladwell weaves together the stories of a Dutch genius and his homemade computer, a band of brothers in central Alabama, a British psychopath and pyromaniacal chemists at Harvard to examine one of the greatest moral challenges in modern American history. Gladwell will discuss his book with MBA Chair-Elect Kristy Fercho on Tuesday, June 19.

Meltzer uses his trademark storytelling to emphasize the importance of knowing what really matters in your life. While saving the house where Superman was created, Meltzer started a quest to find out what his legacy might be. His funny, inspiring, and entertaining story will never let you look at your own life the same way again. Weaving together the historical stories of Abraham Lincoln, Amelia Earhart and even Superman, Meltzer helps you reevaluate what’s truly important: family, friends and those whole lives you touch by making an impact in your workplace. Meltzer will speak on Tuesday, June 19.

Moreno is among just a handful of entertainers who have completed the “EGOT:” winning an Emmy (twice), a Grammy, an Oscar (for West Side Story) and a Tony Award. Her countless credits span more than seven decades, beginning with her Broadway debut at age 13. She has starred on Broadway and London’s West End, appeared in more than 40 feature films and countless television shows. And like Gladwell, she is a New York Times best-selling author with her first book, Rita Moreno: A Memoir, published by Celebra Books. She received the Presidential Medal of Freedom by President George W. Bush and the National Medal of Arts by President Barack Obama. Moreno will keynote the mPower Luncheon on Tuesday, June 19.

The MBA Annual Convention & Expo is largest annual gathering of real estate finance professionals, this is the one event you need to gain access to the industry’s power players and innovators.

Be inspired and get informed by engaging speakers on the Main Stage; meet with hundreds of exhibitors in THE HUB and get hands-on access to the latest products and services; dive deep into Breakout Sessions to get the insight you need on all the facets of the business; connect with industry peers through unparalleled networking opportunities; Leave with actionable takeaways for future success.

For more information and to register for MBA ANNUAL 21, click here.

For information about other upcoming MBA conferences, click here.

For the most up-to-date information regarding legislative activity at the state and local level, visit the MBA State Legislative Database here.

For information about MBA Education events, visit  

For information about the National Association of Minority Mortgage Bankers of America (NAMMBA), visit

Enjoy the week!