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Author Archives: Colin Robins

Colin Robins is the online editor for DSNews.com. He holds a Bachelor of Arts from Texas A&M University and a Master of Arts from the University of Texas, Dallas. Additionally, he contributes to the MReport, DS News' sister site.

CFPB Reform Bill Moves Through House

A new bill designed to reform the Consumer Financial Protection Bureau (CFPB) is on its way to the U.S. Senate after passing in the house. H.R. 3193 (the Consumer Financial Freedom and Washington Accountability Act) was created to bring more "accountability and transparency" to the agency, according to Rep. Sean Duffy (R-Wisconsin), the bill's sponsor.

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LRES Announces New SVP, Executive Advisor

LRES, a national provider of residential and commercial valuations and asset management for the mortgage, banking, credit union, and real estate industries, named Richard Cimino as SVP and executive advisor.

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Number of ‘Fully Recovered’ Markets Grows

Eighty-nine markets nationwide have "fully recovered" to normalized price levels, Homes.com says in its December Local Market Index. That number is up from 87 in the previous report. Mid-size markets saw a large improvement in recovery efforts; 60 of the top 200 mid-size markets have fully recovered previous losses in home prices.

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New Year Brings Another Decline in Freddie’s Portfolio

After a slight uptick in December, the annualized growth rate of Freddie Mac's mortgage portfolio dipped back into the negatives in January, with growth clocking in a rate of -1.9 percent. The GSE's monthly volume summary notes the unpaid principal balance (UPB) of mortgage-related investments decreased by approximately $7.1 billion in January.

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Prices Crawl Up 0.1% in December Index

The Data & Analytics division of Black Knight Financial Services released on Monday its latest Home Price Index (HPI), noting an increase of 0.1 percent in home prices to $232,000 for the month of December. The largest states experienced varying degrees of home price changes: California experienced no change; Florida rose 0.6 percent; New Jersey fell 0.1 percent; New York rose 0.7 percent; and Texas rose 0.4 percent.

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Fannie Reports Q4 Profit, Makes Good on Bailout Funds

Posting a profit of $6.5 billion in the fourth quarter, Fannie Mae announced Friday it will pay the Treasury Department $7.2 billion in March, bringing its total dividend payments to the government to $121.1 billion—a full $5 billion more than what the enterprise drew following the financial crisis. Nevertheless, per Fannie's (and Freddie's) agreement with Treasury, the payments will continue.

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Home Listings Up 3.1% in January

Realtor.com's latest National Housing Trends Report uncovers some positive indicators for the year ahead, not the least of which is a recovery in supply. "In January 2013, just 8 markets registered increases in inventory. This January, 83 markets (58 percent) of the 143 markets tracked by realtor.com showed increases in inventory, year-over-year," the report said.

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Monthly Home Payments Up 21% in Q4

RealtyTrac released Thursday a new housing affordability analysis, noting an average 21 percent increase in monthly house payments from a year ago. The report showed that the average house payment of a home purchased in the fourth quarter of 2013 rose to $865. That figure is based on a 30-year fixed rate mortgage with an interest rate of 4.46 percent and a 20 percent down payment.

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Boost in Inventory Slows January Home Value Growth

A report released Thursday by Zillow shows national home values rose just 0.2 percent in January from December. Inventory rose in 22 of the nation’s 35 largest metros, explaining some of the slowdown in home value gains. Year-over-year, home values rose 6.3 percent in January, down from previous gains of 7.1 percent as recently as August 2013. Home values are expected to rise another 3.4 percent to $175,301 in the next 12 months.

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Report: Borrowing Up Among Younger Consumers

The Federal Reserve Bank of New York revealed Tuesday that aggregate consumer debt rose in 2013's final quarter, citing an increase of $241 billion dollars. The figure represents the largest quarter-to-quarter increase since 2007. The report commented, "All groups, even those with subprime credit scores, increased their mortgage balances in 2006. Now, the modest mortgage balance increases we see are mainly coming from high credit score borrowers."

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