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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.
Investments Lending

What happened to all that mortgage settlement money?

New York Times' Dealbook provides look at 8 massive mortgage settlements

December 28, 2016

While the headlines don’t show up quite as often as they once did, it still seems like that every few weeks another bank is settling with the federal government (or other parties) over the mortgage misdeeds of the past.

In fact, recently Credit Suisse and Deutsche Bank both settled with the Department of Justice over legacy mortgage issues stretching back to the housing crisis.

Each of those settlements checks in the multi-billion dollar range, but what happens to the settlement money after the banks pay up?

Over at the New York Times, Dealbook attempted to recap what happened to the money from eight of the largest mortgage settlements, including Bank of America, JPMorgan Chase, Wells Fargo, Deutsche Bank, Credit Suisse, and others.

The headline on the Dealbook article is “Where Does the Mortgage Settlement Money Go?”

The article discusses those eight settlements and what each bank was required to do as part of each settlement.

But as someone pointed out on Twitter (and forgive me, I don’t remember who it was), a more appropriate headline is probably “Where is the Mortgage Settlement Money Supposed to Go?”

The article presents where the money was supposed to go, but doesn’t actually show where the money actually went.

And as readers of HousingWire likely know, those two things aren’t always the same. 

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