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CFPB Architect Formally Explores Senate Bid

Elizabeth Warren is moving closer to confirming her 2012 Senate bid. The controversial professor-turned-politico took formal, exploratory actions in Massachusetts recently, indicating that Warren's rumored plans to run for office are more than speculation. Officially developing an exploratory campaign committee, Warren has also initiated a donation website, elizabethforma.com, and she seems to be the likely liberal candidate vying to unseat Republican Sen. Scott Brown next November.

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Prudential Enhances Hospitality Holdings

Outrigger Hotels and Resorts has new ownership, following the closing of Prudential Mortgage Capital Company├â┬ó├óÔÇÜ┬¼├óÔÇ×┬ós $137.8 million acquisition of the hospitality entity. Prudential Mortgage provided the major, seven-year fixed-rate mortgage loan on behalf of Prudential├â┬ó├óÔÇÜ┬¼├óÔÇ×┬ós general account.

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Columbia Professors Propose Refi Boom for Recovery

If two professors at Columbia Business School have anything to say about it, 30 million homeowners across the country would refinance their mortgages and stabilize the lagging housing market in the process. The duo recently proposed the refi boom in a paper that aimed to prop up sagging home prices and accelerate job growth nationally. The academes, R. Glenn Hubbard and Chris Mayer, propose reducing mortgage rates by about one percent to encourage a boost in home prices and the housing recovery.

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NYT: Feds Investigating S&P Over MBS Ratings

Standard & Poor's debt downgrades rubbed salt in U.S. wounds over a dysfunctional political system, but now it may be the ratings agency's turn to blink in the negative spotlight. A New York Times story alleges that the federal government plans to investigate whether S&P played fast and loose with ratings for mortgage-backed securities before the Great Recession. According to the Times, the Justice Department has undertaken an investigation to determine whether S&P gave insufficient attention to the now infamous financial products.

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Guardian Goes with MortgageFlex

MortgageFlex Systems, Inc. has added a new client to its admirable roster, recently signing Guardian Mortgage Company, Inc. to enhance its origination processing requirements and streamline communications.

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Van Eck Releases New Market Vectors ETF

Van Eck Global is enhancing its product offerings, recently debuting its Market Vectors Mortgage REIT Income exchange-traded fund, dubbed MORT in company lingo. The new program will give users play exposure to REITs.

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Bank Failures Hearing Goes After Regulators

With the latest bank failure tallying up numbers for 2011 at 64, lawmakers convened a field hearing in Georgia Tuesday to determine whether risk-wary authorities are to blame for folding institutions and federal rescues. Appearing as witnesses, several bank presidents complained of a stifling regulatory environment, which federal regulatory authorities, in turn, portrayed as needed and helpful in the wake of the financial crisis. According to the FDIC, this year's 64 failures followed 157 from last year, which built on 140 failures over 2009, totaling 380 failures since 2008.

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Ellie Mae Makes Major Acquisition

Ellie Mae. is growing its customer base and mortgage origination facilitation through the acquisition of Del Mar DataTrac, Inc. The recently announced transaction is projected to increase Ellie Mae's market share, putting them on track to originate nearly 30 percent of all residential mortgages in the U.S. this year.

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WFG Welcomes New VP

WFG National Title Insurance Company has a new vice president of sales and marketing, with the hiring of Wendy Lunt. Lunt├â┬ó├óÔÇÜ┬¼├óÔÇ×┬ós appointment is WFG├â┬ó├óÔÇÜ┬¼├óÔÇ×┬ós most recent step in growing its newly acquired Puget Sound division.

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