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Opinion, commentary and analysis on everything that makes the U.S. housing economy tick -- not to mention the ghosts in the machine, too. Written by HW's team of editors and reporters each business day.
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President Obama will address housing

Finally...

August 5, 2013

As a newsroom, we are on high alert each and every time President Obama speaks. However, as a mortgage finance publication, we hold our breath during each speech, waiting for the president to address the country’s housing situation. We are typically left hanging, however, as President Obama skims over the topic of housing with a few brief comments.

But the president will deliver a speech on Tuesday in Phoenix, and rumor has it that this speech will cater specifically to housing.

In an analyst report released by Compass Point Research & Trading Group, the research firm voiced their expectations that the president will focus on the White House’s foreclosure mitigation efforts, HARP and HAMP, which have helped more than 3.4 million borrowers. President Obama is expected to call for an expansion of the HARP to Non-Agency borrowers.

Currently, HARP is only available to borrowers with loans backed by the GSEs. On July 25, the president delivered the first in a series of speeches on the economy, briefly mentioning his proposals to expand mortgage refinancing opportunities via new legislation and/or the existing framework of HARP.

The president is also expected to discuss the topics of Representative Mel Watt’s, D-N.C., nomination to head the Federal Housing Finance Agency, as well as GSE reform.

If you’re looking for equal measures of backward and forward-looking commentary, this may be the speech for you, according to Compass Point.

“We do not expect the president’s rhetoric during this speech to translate into meaningful movement on any of these issues and instead note the event as a headline to be aware of heading into the week,” the research firm wrote in its analyst report.

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