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Volume 18 | Issue 161 | Wednesday, August 21, 2019

The Lede


Mortgage Applications Dip MBA Weekly Applications Survey

Mortgage applications fell from one week earlier, even as the 30-year fixed mortgage rate fell even further, the Mortgage Bankers Association reported this morning in its Weekly Mortgage Applications Survey for the week ending August 16.


Top National News

Mortgage Debt Has Peaked. Why Has the Share of Homeowners with a Mortgage Fallen to a 13-Year Low?

Urban Institute, Aug. 20, 2019--Michael Neal
The household-owned value of the U.S. housing market is at an all-time high of $26.12 trillion--significantly higher than the pre-crisis peak of $22.68 trillion in 2006. Housing equity and non-HELOC (home equity line of credit) mortgage debt outstanding are also at historic highs. At the same time, the share of homeowners with a mortgage, at 62.9 percent, is at the lowest level since at least 2005.

Mortgage Market Reopens to Risky Borrowers

Wall Street Journal, Aug. 21, 2019--Ben Eisen (subscription)
More than a decade after home loans triggered the worst financial crisis in a generation, the strict lending requirements put in place during its aftermath are starting to erode. Home buyers with low credit scores or high debt levels as well as those lacking traditional employment are finding it easier to get credit.

Trump Examining Various Tax Cuts to Bolster the Economy

Wall Street Journal, Aug. 20, 2019--Rebecca Ballhaus, Andrew Resuccia, Richard Rubin (subscription)
President Trump said the White House is examining proposals to bolster the economy, including reducing capital-gains taxes, while maintaining that growth remains strong.

Study: Upping the VA Home Loan Funding Fee is a Bad Move

National Mortgage Professional, Aug. 20, 2019--Phil Hall
A new study published by NDP Analytics has determined that increasing the funding fee on VA home loans could result in fewer servicemembers and veterans becoming homeowners.

Freddie Mac Updates Servicing Data Corrections, Modifications Policies

National Mortgage News, Aug. 20, 2019--Bonnie Sinnock (subscription)
Freddie Mac is replacing a manual form submission process used to correct post-settlement and real estate owned data with new technology.

Regulators Scrap Proposed Volcker Rule Compliance Standard

American Banker, Aug. 20, 2019--Hannah Lang (subscription)
The Federal Deposit Insurance Corp. board approved a final rule Tuesday that removes the so-called accounting prong. Last year, the agencies had proposed using fair value accounting as an alternative to the current standard, which financial services firms have also found burdensome.

Mortgage REITs Were Doing Great--Until the Yield Curve Inverted

The Real Deal, Aug. 20, 2019--Rich Bockmann
Three of the largest real estate investment trusts that buy up residential mortgages and package them into securities have cut their dividends so far this year. The cuts came after the yields on three-month and 10-year treasuries inverted in March for the first time in more than a decade.

Santandar Bank Cuts Back on Its Mortgage Business

Philadelphia Inquirer, Aug. 20, 2019--Joseph N. DiStefano
Santander Bank NA, the U.S. arm of Spain-based multinational lender Banco Santander, will lay off 66 staff at its Villanova mortgage offices this fall, the bank told the Pennsylvania Department of Labor in a federally required WARN Act notice.

Residential Finance News

MBA Education Path to Diversity Scholar Profile: Vivian Kwok

Vivian Kwok is Director of Mortgage Operations with Manulife Investment Management, Toronto, Ontario. She has more than 15 years of industry experience. She earned her Bachelor of Arts (Honors) in Economics and Geography from the University of Toronto.

RE/MAX: July Home Sales Up 2.4%, Inventory Growth Down

RE/MAX, Denver, said July home sales bounced back after a sluggish June, as inventory declined for the first time in nine months.

First American: Increasing Tenure Length Dampening Home Sales

Demand for existing homes is strong, but one can't buy what's not for sale, said First American Financial Corp., Santa Ana, Calif.

Commercial/Multifamily News

Single-Family Rent Growth Slips

CoreLogic, Irvine, Calif., said rent prices in single-family rental properties increased 2.9 percent year-over-year in June, down slightly from a year ago.

Dealmaker: Sonnenblick-Eichner Co. Arranges $46M for New Orleans Hotel

Sonnenblick-Eichner Co., Beverly Hills, Calif., arranged $46 million of interim first mortgage financing for Maison Dupuy, a 200-room boutique hotel in downtown New Orleans.

MBA News

MBA Regulatory Compliance Conference 2019 in Washington Sept. 22-24

The Mortgage Bankers Association's annual Regulatory Compliance Conference takes place Sept. 22-24 at the Grand Hyatt in Washington, D.C. Early registration deadline is Monday, Aug. 12.

MBA Education Advanced Risk Management Concepts Workshop in Chicago Sept. 15

MBA Education presents a special edition of its Advanced Risk Management Concepts Workshop on Sunday, Sept. 15 in conjunction with the MBA Risk Management, Quality Assurance and Fraud Prevention Forum in Chicago.

Make Your Voice Heard through MBA Mortgage Action Alliance

The Mortgage Action Alliance is a voluntary, non-partisan and free nationwide grassroots lobbying network of real estate finance industry professionals, affiliated with the Mortgage Bankers Association.

About MBA Newslink

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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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