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Mortgage Rates Post Mixed Results

After beaching on a 50-year low last week, mortgage rates posted mixed results this week, either raising costs for mortgage borrowers or lowering costs. Weekly surveys by Freddie Mac and Bankrate disagreed with each other about the benchmark 30-year loan, with the GSE posting spikes and the company showing declines to new lows. No matter which rates went up and down, analysts said in past interviews that borrowers are unlikely to return to the market. According to Freddie, the 30-year loan jumped from 4.15 percent to 4.22 percent.

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A Familiar Face Returns to Prudential Mortgage

Newark-based Prudential Mortgage Capital Company announced Thursday the return of one Curtis Brunton to an originations principal position at the firm's San Francisco location. After serving in a past role with Prudential, leaving it for another lender, and now returning to his old haunts, Brunton will originate commercial mortgage-backed securities with funds from a number of securitizing companies. Bruton will work with a more recently announced joint venture with Liberty Island Group, an affiliated fund of Perella Weinberg Partners' asset-based value strategy.

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GSEs Revise Guidelines for Lenders, Servicers

Mortgage giant Freddie Mac recently upgraded a number of quality control guidelines for financial institutions doing business with it. New features for lenders and servicers include the ability to submit mortgage files over electronic media, with a number of other provisions aimed at collecting mortgage insurance coverage. The GSE follows in the footsteps of Fannie Mae, which also recently amended the guidelines it approves for insurers, servicers, and lenders.

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Experts: Future for CMBS Markets Still Mixed

Even as economic uncertainty and fears of a double-dip recession continue to rile the markets, some say that commercial mortgage-backed securities, recently on a downdraft, could either slowly recover over 2011 or see a fallback. According to experts, ongoing concerns about debt crises overseas and at home could dent a rebound for the CMBS markets. Stories by Bloomberg News, Retail Traffic magazine, coupled with data from Trepp Inc. and Barclays Capital, portray gray skies for CMBS.

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Mortgage Applications Hit 15-Year Bottom Despite Low Rates

Cresting on low tides in credit supply and buyer confidence, fewer first-time and repeat homebuyers filed mortgage applications last week, according to a weekly survey released by the Mortgage Bankers Association Wednesday. The MBA said that overall mortgage loan application volume dropped 2.4 percent, with purchases slamming into a 15-year low. The Market Composite Index, which the MBA uses to gauge loan application activity, showed a seasonally adjusted squeeze in loan volume.

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Churchill Mortgage Adds New Branch Manager

Churchill Mortgage Corp. named a new face to its Brentwood-based call center branch in Tennessee. The mortgage lender made the announcement that it had put forward Kevin Watson as the new manager of the call center. According to a statement released by the mortgage lender, Watson arrives in his role with some 20 years of mortgage banking experience.

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Zillow: Mortgage Rates Fall. Again

Mortgage rates continued falling to new lows, according to real estate Web site Zillow, which released rates in the latest Mortgage Marketplace note Tuesday. According to Zillow, the benchmark 30-year fixed-rate loan jumped four basis points to hit 4.07 percent Saturday, up from 4.09 percent last week. Zillow tracks mortgage rates by pooling anonymous loan quotes submitted by the 1.7 million users that it says follow its Web site on a daily basis. The Zillow rates track ongoing mortgage-rate declines reported by Bankrate and Freddie Mac.

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Weiss: Mortgage Insurers Barely Make the Grade

With decisions by state regulators to close mortgage insurance practices for PMI Group, pending the company's ability to meet capital requirements, mortgage insurers continue to fall under scrutiny as a troubled industry.

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FHA Multifamily Rental Loans Hit New Highs

Despite all-time highs for home affordability, homebuilders are seeing less demand for home construction and more for multifamily rentals, with the Federal Housing Administration recently releasing a report that signals new highs for rental properties across the country. The FHA said that it has endorsed some $10.5 billion in multifamily rental housing loans ├â┬ó├óÔÇÜ┬¼├óÔé¼┼ô seven times the number of loans made three years ago and the only second time that the FHA has lent so much.

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