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Mortgage Electronic Registration Systems has officially announced the retirement of President and CEO R.K. Arnold, with Paul Bognanno serving as interim President and CEO until a replacement is named. MERS had no comment Friday when asked if Arnold was leaving. Arnold joined the company at its inception nearly 15 years ago in 1996. MERS is a registry of home ownership and other mortgage rights for more than half of all outstanding residential mortgages in the U.S. "During his tenure, MERS launched a commercial mortgage registry, the industry’s eNote Registry and products to help reduce mortgage fraud," said Bognanno. "I look forward to helping MERS build and expand upon that history." Bognanno recently served as chairman of private mortgage insurer Radian Guaranty. "I am proud of the important value that MERS provides to our nation’s housing finance system," Arnold said in an email to HousingWire over the weekend. "I’m looking forward to enjoying the next chapter of my life." Write to Jacob Gaffney. Follow him on Twitter @JacobGaffney.

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