Sunday, July 1, 2012

Feds To Cut Banksters More Breaks; Will Ease 'Putback' Squeeze Felt By Lenders Required To Buy Back Crappy Mortgages

Bloomberg reports:

  • The Federal Housing Finance Agency, the regulator of Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac, plans to help banks avoid being forced to buy back mortgages as it becomes concerned that lenders are tightening standards even for the most creditworthy home buyers.

  • The FHFA will detail flaws that would trigger a putback request, Stefanie Johnson, a spokeswoman for FHFA, said in a statement. The regulator also is standardizing the data Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac collect on each loan so they have more information when buying mortgages from lenders, she said.
  • The lenders perceive the pendulum has swung too far, and they’re being held accountable for things beyond their control,” said Brian Chappelle, a partner at the bank consulting firm Potomac Partners. “Their reaction is going to be to tighten up.”
  • Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac, which own or guarantee more than half of U.S. mortgages, are currently demanding lenders repurchase faulty loans with unpaid principal balances totaling $15.3 billion, according to their earnings statements for the first quarter.

  • The two companies were taken over by the U.S. government in 2008 after investments in risky mortgages brought them to the brink of bankruptcy. They’ve received about $190 billion in aid since then and the battle with banks over repurchases is part of their efforts minimize losses.

No comments: