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Origination

Report: New-Home Sales Limp Over June

Fewer homebuyers purchased new single-family homes over June, the Census Bureau and HUD reported Tuesday, with sales falling to an annual rate of 312,000 from 315,000 the previous month. Economists say these numbers nonetheless reflect progress from February, when single-family sales hit a record low, while others point to a slowly vanishing foreclosure fleet. The report held that June sales amounted to 1.0 percent, plus or minus 12.5 percent, beneath revised May estimates, still 1.6 percent above estimates from June last year.

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Landmark Lauded, Again

Landmark Mortgage Group has bragging rights in the Pleasanton, California region, having just been named the best mortgage company in the tri-valley area by Pleasanton Weekly. The magazine├â┬ó├óÔÇÜ┬¼├óÔÇ×┬ós annual Reader├â┬ó├óÔÇÜ┬¼├óÔÇ×┬ós Choice Awards named Landmark the top mortgage entity for the second consecutive year.

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Warren Leaves CFPB for Harvard

After a year of controversy, back-and-forth hearings, and battles on Capitol Hill, Consumer Financial Protection Bureau architect and advocate Elizabeth Warren will depart from the bureau and return to an endowed position at Harvard Law School come August. Date will assume responsibility for day-to-day affairs and operations at the Treasury Department. Last month Bloomberg News circulated reports that Obama would replace Warren, a polarizing figure on Capitol Hill, with the associate director.

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Shore Financial Takes On Two New Hires

In a statement released Monday, Michigan-based mortgage lender Shore Financial Services, Inc. announced its decision to appoint Susan Pelto, a regulatory compliance expert, its chief compliance officer. Alongside Pelto, the company advanced COO Kathy Welty to CRO, whereby she will now participate in a risk committee.

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Case-Shiller Levels Hopes for Price Rebound

A Standard & Poor's/Case-Shiller Home Price Index released Tuesday revealed slight bumps in home prices across composites collected for some 20 cities, with the nation's Capitol leading the way with an upward arc, even as existing-home sales flat-lined in June and single-family starts showed nominal signs of life. According to the index, 10- and 20-city composites jumped May over April by 1.1 percent and 1.0 percent, respectively, with only three in 20 assessments showing declines and Phoenix staying unchanged.

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CoreLogic Making Moves in India and U.S.

CoreLogic├â┬ó├óÔÇÜ┬¼├óÔÇ×┬ós international operations are making news in India, with the announcement that Cognizant will buy CoreLogic Global Services Pvt. Ltd. for a reported $50 million. The acquisition of CoreLogic Global, better known as CoreLogic India, will likely make Cognizant the third largest information technology services entity in the country, ousting Wipro Ltd. Lenders using the new program will benefit from a high level of customization, including the ability to tailor the alert system.

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Housing Markets Mixed as Debt Talks Splinter

As splintering debt-ceiling negotiations unnerved analysts and ratings agencies, Treasury yields and mortgage rates remained relatively stable over the weekend, reflecting a widespread consensus among investors and market watchers that partisan divisions would soon give way to a grand bargain between policymakers. CNN reported Sunday that House Speaker John Boehner (R-Ohio) refused to agree to a set of conditions at the White House, ending dramatic four-month-long negotiations.

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American Land Title CEO Takes Leave

In a statement released Monday, the American Land Title Association announced the departure of CEO Kurt Pfotenhaur, who plans to take over as EVP and vice chairman at the publically traded First American Title Insurance Company. Pfotenhaur arrives at First American with over 26 years of experience in politics and the financial services industry. As CEO of Washington, D.C.-based ALTA, he frequently rubbed elbows with senior contacts at the White House and Congress.

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Companies, Industry Groups Continue QRM Rule Fight

Real estate and relocation servicers provider Realogy Corporation became the latest in a string of companies to file critical commentary with regulatory authorities overseeing the Qualified Residential Mortgage rule, the embattled proposal that industry groups say would crimp housing by forcing homebuyers to front 20 percent in down payments. Realogy joins a host of other critics, including the Coalition for Sensible Housing Policy, 320 members of Congress, and some 44 private organizations.

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