Articles by Jessica Guerin

Calabria to Congress: Fannie, Freddie reform is urgent, critical and overdue

FHFA director's report to Congress makes pleading case to end GSE conservatorship
FHFA Director Mark Calabria stressed the need to remove the GSEs from conservatorship to lawmakers, outlining the reforms he views as necessary in his first annual Report to Congress since taking the helm at the agency. Here’s what he wants Congress to do to "support sustainable homeownership."
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BB&T, SunTrust to rebrand as Truist

Announce name change as the two banks finalize "merger of equals"
When BB&T announced its pending "merger of equals" with SunTrust Banks in February, the companies said they would emerge together under a new name. On Wednesday, that name was revealed, as the two banks said they would be operating together as Truist – a moniker they said reflects their separate heritages and "shared belief in building a better future."
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BB&T, SunTrust announce new Charlotte headquarters

Merged companies will transition employees to new city
BB&T announced in February its pending merger with SunTrust Banks in a $66 billion deal that marked the largest big bank merger since the financial crisis. Now, the companies have revealed the location of their new headquarters – a 550,000-square-foot office located in a tower in Charlotte, North Carolina, set to house 2,000 employees from both banks.
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Who wants to be CEO of Wells Fargo? No one, apparently

Big bank struggles to fill top job
It seems Wells Fargo is having trouble finding someone willing to take on the role of leading the embattled bank into a new, scandal-free era after its CEO stepped down in March. According to The Wall Street Journal, the bank's board has approached a select number of candidates, and no one appears to be taking the bait.
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For the 1st time in 3 years, lenders finally expect to turn a profit

Strong consumer demand has lenders feeling optimistic
Mortgage lenders are finally feeling optimistic about the business, according to Fannie Mae’s latest sentiment survey. For the first time in nearly three years, senior execs at major lending institutions reported a positive outlook in net profit margins, with most citing increased consumer demand as the main reason.
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Here's how long it will take to save for a down payment in major U.S. cities

The nationwide average climbs to 14 years as affordability issues mount
The nationwide average to save for a 20% down payment for a median-priced home on a median income is now 14 years, according to Unison’s Home Affordability Report. For average-earning Millennials, that means homeownership may not be attainable until they are well into their 40s.
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Ocwen all but drops Ocwen name, will operate as PHH Mortgage and Liberty Home Equity Solutions

Completes integration, transfers 1 million loans to Black Knight LoanSphere
Ocwen Financial announced Monday that it has hit two milestones enabling the company to officially originate and service loans through its two primary brands: PHH Mortgage for forward servicing and lending, and Liberty Home Equity Solutions for reverse lending and servicing. In effect, the mortgage giant is leaving behind its tarnished name, saying that it will consider a future rebrand.
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NAR invests in blockchain startup Propy

Protech real estate platform aims to digitize and streamline real estate transactions
The National Association of Realtors is backing Propy, a Silicon Valley startup whose real estate software aims to automate real estate transactions and allows properties to be bought and sold in an automated digital process that includes the use of cryptocurrency.
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Tax Cuts and Jobs Act will likely spur demand for entry-level homes, researchers say

Tax laws equal savings for "vast majority" of homeowners and renters
The "vast majority" of Americans have seen a boost in disposable income thanks to 2017’s Tax Cuts and Jobs Act, and this could provide a sizable boost to homeownership, say researchers at John Burns Real Estate Consulting. "Homeowners buying at these prices points haven’t benefited from housing tax policy in years," they note.
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HUD: Reverse mortgages continue drain on FHA insurance fund

Subsidy rate holds steady in Q2 as program becomes more burdensome for FHA
Reverse mortgage volume has been rather abysmal as of late, and second quarter data from HUD doesn't provide many bright spots. In its Q2 report to Congress on the state of the FHA’s flagship insurance Fund, HUD reveals that the reverse mortgage program continues to be a drain.
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