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Stars align for housing policy firms and data providers

December 5, 2013

If there is one thing on Washington, D.C.’s mind today, it’s housing policy.

Whether its House Financial Services Committee Chairman Jeb Hensarling, R-Texas, trying to get his GSE/FHA reform package on the House floor for a vote, or the Obama administration’s promise of a private-capital comeback, housing is big news.

So it’s no surprise that firms with housing data are finding themselves the preferred 'Friday-night dates' of housing and economic policy organizations.

If entities focused on policy are going to influence the federal government’s actions on housing, they will need one thing at their disposal: data, and lots of it.

Expect this philosophy to inspire partnerships between data firms and policy institutes.

Take for example, CoreLogic’s announcement that the property analytics firm is forming a strategic alliance with economic and social policy research group, the Urban Institute.  

CoreLogic’s data will fuel some of the research coming out of the Urban Institute’s newly formed Housing Finance Policy Center.

The two organizations recently hosted an event in D.C. called "Data, Demand and Demographics: A Symposium on Housing Finance."

The event became the location in which Gene Sperling, director of the National Economic Council, advised the crowd that more private capital in housing is ultimately what the Obama adminstration wants — even though the administration rejected an individual hedge fund’s proposal to take over the GSEs’ insurance businesses. 

"We believe this is a real win-win relationship," said Faith Schwartz, senior vice president of the government solutions group at CoreLogic. "The Urban Institute is a prominent and well-respected research organization. We couldn’t be happier to work with them."

The Urban Institute pulled in some heavy hitters with experience in housing finance. Iconic ABS analyst Laurie Goodman joined the Urban Institute earlier this year, leaving Amherst Securities, where she informed a great deal of the group's mortgage-related research. Goodman's reports were always fueled by the most recent market data.

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