new REwired blog header

Open commentary on everything impacting the U.S. housing economy. The opinions expressed here represent the author's alone.

Andrew Lahde on CMBS: Look Out Below!

Andrew Lahde of the aptly-named Lahde Capital is one of the rock stars of the current market -- one of his hedge funds returned an astounding 870 percent last year by shorting the ABX indices. That fund has now wound up its positions; not because residential real estate and subprime debt don't have further to fall -- they do -- but because he felt it was getting too expensive to bet on a continued downturn. (In other words, everyone's sort of figured out by now that subprime stinks, and that this real estate thing is likely to suck for some time).
Read More

Viewpoint: Wrong Place, Wrong Time for Product Placement

First American CoreLogic used a study in the most recent version of LoanPerformance's Market Pulse newsletter to tout the accuracy of its new automated valuation model targeting the default industry, called ValuePoint 4 Default. In the study, the company compared the accuracy of broker price opinions to its AVM platform -- and I don't think HW readers would be shocked at all to find out that the study found that the AVM performed as good or better than BPOs in hitting "distressed property value."
Read More

What is the OCC really after?

We received some questions from a few readers who wanted to know what the Office of the Comptroller of the Currency is really after, in terms of an announcement Monday that it would require nine of the largest banks to provide loan-level information on every loan serviced to the Federal regulator. While we can't confirm whether or not Comptroller of the Currency John Dugan is, indeed, off on a power trip or not, we can offer two more reasonable reasons why the OCC would want this data:
Read More

Fruitcake on a 1004

Tanta over at the Calculated Risk blog notes today that National City Corp. is apparently refusing to subordinate -- in other words, refusing to keep its original second mortgage in a subordinate lien position when a borrower looks to refinance their first mortgage. Per the Chicago Tribune, it appears that the bank isn't giving its reasons for the new policy:
Read More

Could a recession last until 2011?

Recent commentary by Paul Ferrell at Marketwatch caught our eye this Monday, not only because it got us humming a great old song, but also because it takes a wide look at how the current credit crunch is likely to play out of the next 12 months. Scratch that. Make it closer to 48 months, Ferrell says:
Read More

Ahead of the curve

Not only was HW in front of the WSJ's report on the FDIC bulking up for bank failures, but we were a good month ahead of major media on -- a site that is dedicated to "helping" borrowers walk away from their mortgages.
Read More

Foreclosure attorneys doing loss mitigation?

Here at the MBA Servicing Conference in New Orleans, we're attending plenty of sessions. But the most interesting of the day was a Freddie Mac-led panel featuring vice president of servicing and asset management Ingrid Beckles, who said the GSE spent $12 million last year on loss mitigation incentive payments.
Read More

Did S&P Really Stress Test the Monolines?

On the heels of an S&P report affirming MBIA's AAA insurer rating, and giving a similar stamp of approval to Ambac, HW's received more than a few emails questioning the stress test used to give both monolines a top grade. One reader noted in an email to us:
Read More