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Volume 18 | Issue 158 | Friday, August 16, 2019

The Lede


Amid Lower Interest Rates, Builder Confidence Edges Higher

Builder confidence in the market for newly built single-family homes rose one point to 66 in August, according to the latest National Association of Home Builders/Wells Fargo Housing Market Index.


Top National News

Applications For New Home Sales Jumped 11% on Lower Rates

Mortgage Orb, Aug. 15, 2019--Patrick Barnard
Applications for mortgages for new home purchases increased 11% in July compared with June and were up 31.2% compared with July 2018, according to the Mortgage Bankers Association Builder Application Survey.

Mortgage Rates Level Off at Multiyear Lows as Investors Stay Away from Mortgage-Backed Securities

Washington Post, Aug. 15, 2019--Kathy Orton
According to the latest data from the Mortgage Bankers Association, the market composite index increased 21.7 percent from a week earlier. The refinance index jumped 37 percent from the previous week, while the purchase index rose 2 percent.

FHA to Ease Access to Loans in Unapproved Condo Complexes

San Bernardino Sun, Aug. 15, 2019--Jeff Lazerson
Starting Oct. 15, individual borrowers will be able to get Federal Housing Administration-insured mortgages for condos in complexes lacking FHA certification. (MBA mention)

Bankers Welcome Rush of Refis, But It's No Cure-All

American Banker, Aug. 15, 2019--Andy Peters (subscription)
Mortgage refinancing activity is back from the dead thanks to declining interest rates, and that's good news for banks that will be starved for additional revenue as lending margins keep tightening. But as with many good things, there's a catch. (MBA mention)

Lender Risk from CFPB Underwriting Rule Tested in Ohio Case

National Mortgage News, Aug. 15, 2019--Kate Berry (subscription)
Lenders have long worried that borrowers would use the Consumer Financial Protection Bureau's mortgage underwriting rule to fight foreclosure in court. But the outcome of the first known legal attempt may discourage others from trying.

The Startups Safeguarding Real Estate Against Schemers and Scammers

Wall Street Journal, Aug. 15, 2019--Beth DeCarbo (subscription)
Real estate wire transfer fraud cost 11,300 victims nearly $150 million last year, according to the FBI. These firms want to do something about it.

Real Estate Startup Flyhomes Secures $141 Million and Promises to Buy Your House

HousingWire, Aug. 15, 2019--Kathleen Howley
Flyhomes, the four-year-old real estate startup that lets people make cash offers on homes while they work to secure a mortgage, announced a new round of funding and a new service for buyers on Thursday.

A Mortgage Company Goes to War with Connecticut Regulators

CT Mirror, Aug. 15, 2019--Mark Pazniokas
Accused by banking regulators of improperly using unlicensed call-center employees to help negotiate loans, 1st Alliance not only has defended itself with lawyers, but the company has waged a campaign managed by one of Connecticut's leading political operatives, Roy Occhiogrosso.

U.S. 10-Year Yield Drops Below 1.5% for First Time Since 2016

Bloomberg, Aug. 15, 2019--Emily Barrett
The global rally in bonds on Thursday drove the yield on the benchmark 10-year Treasury below 1.5% for the first time since August 2016.

Residential Finance News

MBA Commends HUD for Reproposed Draft of FHA Annual Lender Certification

HUD this week published in the Federal Register a set of revisions it originally proposed in May for FHA annual letter certifications, a move that drew praise from the Mortgage Bankers Association.

Redfin: July Home Prices Rise as Supply Falls

Redfin, Seattle, said U.S. home prices rose for the fourth consecutive month in July, growing by 3.3 percent year over year, even as home sales fell despite low mortgage rates.

Residential Briefs

Ginnie Mae, Washington, D.C. said issuance of its mortgage-backed securities totaled $47.188 billion in July, the highest since December 2016.

Commercial/Multifamily News

The Inverted Yield Curve's Effect on CRE

The recent yield curve inversion may raise concerns about a potential recession, but it is unlikely to harm commercial real estate investors.

Dealmaker: George Smith Partners Arranges $30M for Hotel, Office Assets

George Smith Partners, Los Angeles, secured $30.4 million in acquisition financing for a Corona, Calif. hotel and an office tower in San Fernando, Calif.

MBA News

mPowering You: MBA's Summit For Women in Real Estate Finance in Austin Oct. 26

mPowering You: MBA's Summit For Women in Real Estate Finance, takes place Saturday, Oct. 26 at the Austin Convention Center in Austin, Texas.

Upcoming MBA School of Mortgage Banking II Courses

MBA Education presents its popular School of Mortgage Banking Course II in several locations this summer and fall.

Save on FedEx Shipping through MBA Member Advantage Program

Through the MBA Member Advantage Program, you can save up to 29 percent on small package shipping with FedEx.

About MBA Newslink

President and CEO: Robert Broeksmit, CMB

Publisher: Marcia Davies, Chief Operating Officer

Vice President of Public Affairs: John Mechem

Editor: Mike Sorohan 202/557-2855 

Editorial Director: Michael Tucker 202/557-2851 

Senior Editorial/Advertising Specialist: Lesley Hall 202/557-2856

Advertising Opportunities: Bill Farmakis 203/834-8832

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