Dustin Johnson levels blockbuster claims at title attorneys

Wilbur Ross quits Ocwen Financial

Distressed asset investor bringing his magic to Bank of Cyprus

CFPB proposes 7 big changes to foreclosure process for mortgage servicers

Adds guidance on extended borrower protections
W S

Lending

Dustin Johnson levels blockbuster claims at title attorneys

Is Nat Hardwick the fall guy?
Ben Lane
The situation surrounding the escrow account shortages discovered at LandCastle Title and the law firm of Morris Schneider Wittstadt has taken another dramatic turn, with PGA golfer Dustin Johnson filing an amended motion which accuses Mark and Rod Wittstadt of conspiring to use Nat Hardwick as a pawn and set him up to take the fall for the shortages that were discovered in the accounts of the firm and its subsidiary, LandCastle Title.
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Housing sales inventory continues to grow in October

Lower-priced home inventory lags; high-end homes picking up
Trey Garrison
The number of homes for sale continued to increase across the U.S. in October, a good sign for buyers, but mainly for those on the higher end, according to the latest data from Zillow Real Estate Markets report for October.
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Nationstar buys title company

More plans to grow geographically
Brena Swanson
Solutionstar Holdings, an indirect wholly-owned subsidiary of Nationstar, announced it is expanding further into the mortgage business and snapped up a mortgage title company. It is also expanding operations into some of the nation's largest housing markets.
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Black Knight: Mortgage delinquency rate drops to 7-year low

Loans in foreclosure also dropped to 6-year low
Ben Lane
The mortgage delinquency rate declined in October to a seven-year low, according to Black Knight Financial Services’ “First Look” at the October mortgage data. October also saw a rise in prepayments for the first time since July, which Black Knight said is “historically a good indicator of refinance activity.”
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GSEs officially update representation and warranty policies

Analysts say impact of long-awaited changes may be minimal
Ben Lane
Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac both announced changes to their respective representation and warranty policies, following through on an announcement made by Federal Housing Finance Agency Director Mel Watt at the Mortgage Bankers Association Annual Convention & Expo in October.
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[CHART] FHFA: G-fees more than double in 4 years

Chronological changes in g-fees
Brena Swanson
The Federal Housing Finance Agency’s sixth annual report on the single-family guarantee fees charged by Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac included data from 2009 to 2013, showing just how intensely g-fees have increased in four years.
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MBA announces 31 new members

Membership increases to more than 2,200
Ben Lane
"These new members vary greatly in their size and focus, whether it be residential or commercial/multifamily," said David Stevens, MBA’s president and CEO. "However, they illustrate MBA’s greatest strength: our ability to come to any table or address any situation knowing we represent the entire mortgage-lending spectrum."
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Low interest rates drive refinances to six-month high

Interest rates fall again
Ben Lane
"Low rates are creating opportunities for homeowners to either lower their payments or capitalize on their homes’ equity," said Jonathan Corr, president and COO of Ellie Mae.
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Fannie Mae: Don't expect 2015 to be a breakout year for housing

New year will likely mirror 2014
Brena Swanson
“The housing market continues to grind its way upward, but we don’t expect a breakout performance in 2015 as the fundamentals remain somewhat muted,” said Fannie Mae Chief Economist Doug Duncan.
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CUNA issues alert on HELOC wire fraud

New round of attacks prompts cautions on data
Trey Garrison
CUNA Mutual Group issued an alert this week regarding a wave of fraud that originates from home equity lines of credit and requests wire transfers be sent to construction company accounts.
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