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  • DOJ planning to sue Moody's over crisis-era mortgage bond ratings

    In the fallout from the financial crisis, many argued that the credit ratings agencies’ competition for business led to ratings shopping among bond issuers and relaxed ratings standards for the ratings agencies themselves. Last year, Standard & Poor's reached a $1.375 billion settlement over just such claims. And now the Department of Justice is taking aim at Moody's Investors Service. Click the headline to read more.

Articles by Sarah Wheeler

Executive Conversation: Justin Vedder on certified loans

Altisource addresses manufacturing risk on the front end with CastleLine Certified Loans
There is a lot of value in looking at the manufacturing risk upfront, particularly because it can significantly decrease the likelihood of future loss. Most investors price credit risk, so the certification process allows the investor community to get back to managing credit risk rather than focusing on manufacturing risk.
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Arch MI launches Road to Homeownership toolkit

Designed to help lenders attract first-time homebuyer business
Arch MI's toolkit includes a customizable PowerPoint presentation outlining the mortgage process, interactive worksheets to calculate their financial eligibility and budget for a future home. “Our Roadmap to Homeownership enables lenders to reach out to, educate and encourage this audience by setting up their own home-buying seminar using the toolkit’s materials,” said Leslie Gibin, Arch MI’s vice president for client risk management.
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Monday Morning Cup of Coffee: Wells Fargo employees file class action lawsuit

Plus a political debate that will rival Super Bowl numbers and affordable housing
The presidential candidates in Monday's debate will be asked questions on "achieving prosperity, securing America and America’s direction," which means that housing policy could theoretically be discussed, although I wouldn't create a drinking game around it. A surer bet would be attacks on "Wall Street banks" in general and one big bank in particular: Wells Fargo.
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Evictions in America: A tale of two cities

The approach of NYC versus San Francisco is enlightening
The contrast between how New York City and San Francisco have approached the affordable housing crisis is striking. Both cities are large metropolitan areas with little geographical room to build. But in once case city action led to an 18% decrease in evictions, in another it led to an increase of 32%. 
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CFPB levies $100 million fine against Wells Fargo

Employees opened more than 2 million fake accounts to get sales bonuses
The Consumer Financial Protection Bureau levied the largest fine in its history — $100 million — against Wells Fargo Thursday for the "widespread unlawful" practices of employees who opened more than 2 million fake depository and credit accounts to get sales bonuses. These accounts, opened under existing customers' names without their knowledge, often racked up fees or other charges.
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Hot Seat: Patrick Nackley of Superior Home Services

Taking a proactive approach to damaged properties in default
Servicers can often remediate damage to vacant properties in default prior to the foreclosure sale taking place. This opportunity is not always available, depending on jurisdiction or circumstances particular to a given loan, but frequently the option is available.
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Executive Conversation: Deborah Garcia-Gratacos on servicing the Hispanic market

Deval provides bilingual documents and personnel for optimal communication
Hispanics are the fastest-growing segment of the American population, with 55.3 million Hispanics in the United States in 2014 and this is projected to grow to 30% of the population by 2060. Deval LLC discusses the unique requirements for servicing the Hispanic community.
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