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Home | News | Government (page 4)

Poor Job Numbers Increase Odds of Rate Hike

The Department of Labor released its May 2017 Employment Situation Friday reporting changes in household and establishment survey data. Total nonfarm payroll employment increased, however unemployment rates were fairly stagnant. Experts predict this discouraging report could mean rate hikes in 2017’s future.

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Secretary Carson Makes Rounds During Homeownership Month

HUD Secretary Ben Carson is preparing for a big June as he kicks off the newly proclaimed National Homeownership Month with a forum at his own agency today. He’ll also go before Congress next week to discuss potential HUD budget cuts via Trump’s recent 2018 budget blueprint, which slashes the agency’ funding by more than $6 billion. The cuts will also significantly reduce HUD’s rental assistance program, which Carson recently discussed in a Sirius XM radio interview.

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Loan Processing Could Slow Due to Appraiser Shortage

Due to a shortage of licensed and certified appraisers, major national financial regulatory agencies have issued an advisory to help reduce delays in the consideration of loan applications in rural communities. Since loans cannot be executed without appraisals, the advisory outlines two options to remedy the problem. The FDIC has suggested that states issue temporary practice permits and engage in reciprocity, or that effected institutions submit a request temporary waivers to set aside licensing requirements.

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Reverse Mortgage Complaints Common for Older Americans

The latest CFPB Monthly Complaint Report shows older Americans face a unique set of financial difficulties compared to their younger counterparts. The group regularly cites reverse mortgage concerns—specifically servicing issues and difficult changing loan terms—when lodging complaints with the CFPB. Older Americans also cite financial scams, confusion around deferred- and zero-interest credit cards, and being charged unauthorized add-on products as frequent financial complaints.

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Carson: The Right Mindset Can Overcome

According to HUD Secretary Ben Carson, with “the right mindset,” many of the low-income citizens using his department’s services could cease to need them. Carson said as much in a recent radio interview, when he talked poverty, housing, and the role the government should play in both. The interview comes on the back of President Trump’s recent 2018 budget blueprint, which includes more than $6 billion in cuts to the HUD budget.

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Mortgage Interest on the Decline for Second Straight Month

The Federal Housing Finance Agency has conducted its monthly interest rate survey for 4,437 loans closed during the last five business days in April across 17 lenders, and has reported a decline by 14 to 15 basis points across all mortgage interest rates. The average loan amount has also seen a slight drop of $1,100 after experiencing a spike in March. And while average loan amounts fluctuate from one month to the next, interest rates have been dropping since February.

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Ocwen Sues FIS Over Alleged Inflated Billing

One lawsuit has begat another in California. Ocwen Financial Corp. has alleged that the monitor appointed to review its business practices in the wake of a mortgage servicing settlement ran through an almost $45 million budget in half the time and with half the work. Ocwen alleges that Fidelity Information Services overbilled and charged for improper expenses, including associate trips to casinos and strip clubs.

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Two Bills that Affect Foreclosure Notices

The Maryland legislature has passed House Bill 26 (HB26) that amends the foreclosure notice provisions contained in Maryland Real Property Article 7-105.2. The legislature in Annapolis also passed House Bill 1048 (HB1048), which adds a new registration component to the Maryland foreclosure process. Once it becomes effective, the law will require the property to be registered with the states’ Department of Labor and Licensing Regulation within seven days of docketing the case.

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Inconsistency in the Courts

Applying the U.S. Supreme Court’s Spokeo ruling one way to FDCPA claims and yet another way to RESPA claims, federal courts have loan servicers and litigants guessing as to what type of harm to borrowers is considered concrete.

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FinTech Charters May Have Difficult Road Ahead

The OCC’s initiative to grant national bank charters to FinTech companies may not go as smoothly as some had hoped. According to a new report, there may be some unexpected hurdles that could stall its movement, including new leadership at the OCC and a recent lawsuit filed by various state regulators. President Trump named Keith A. Noreika to replaced Thomas J. Curry as head of the OCC in early May.

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