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Servicing

Markets, Analysts React to the FHFA Suits

Partly in response to suits brought by the Federal Housing Finance Agency Friday, stocks for a number of the 17 companies-turned-defendants sank Tuesday, with Deutsche Bank leading the way down midday. Market watchers across the country offered up their reactions, with some portending considerable fallout for the economy and others waving away notions that a settlement by the banks would weaken the housing recovery. Deutsche, Barclays, Morgan Stanley, and others all saw their shares decline Tuesday midday.

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New Bank Failures Raise 2011 Tally to 70

As Americans vacationed over Labor Day weekend, the FDIC and other regulators found themselves swamped with new bank failures Friday, with the federal agency serving as receiver for two in Georgia. State regulators stepped in to shutter Cumming-based Patriot Bank of Georgia and Woodstock-based CreekSide Bank, signing off on a loss-share transaction that left Atlanta-based Georgia Commerce Bank as the sole acquirer. The collapse of Patriot and Creekside raises the national tally for bank failures to 70 this year.

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Strong Servicing Sector for First United

First United Bank has reason to celebrate, with the company├â┬ó├óÔÇÜ┬¼├óÔÇ×┬ós recent announcement that its mortgage servicing division├â┬ó├óÔÇÜ┬¼├óÔÇ×┬ós portfolio has ballooned to more than $1 billion. The Oklahoma-based financial institution will now be able to serve even more customers in its home state and Texas thanks to its achievement.

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FHFA Sues 17 Companies Over MBS Losses

Acting on behalf of Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac, the Federal Housing Finance Agency filed suits Friday against 17 of the nation├â┬ó├óÔÇÜ┬¼├óÔÇ×┬ós largest banks and firms to recover losses stemming from mortgage-backed securities. At stake: tens of billions of dollars in assets, according to market watchers. Multiple news outlets fixed losses in mortgage-backed securities for the GSEs at $41 billion. The federal agency announced that it filed the suits on behalf of the GSEs in a New York federal court.

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Profits Jump for Mortgage Banks Over Q2 2011

Despite an unfulfilling jobs report that left housing industries with flat feet, independent mortgage banks found reason to celebrate with a windfall in profit on second-quarter loans. Mortgage banks on average scored $575 for each loan, reflecting increases from $346 per loan over the first quarter this year, according to a performance report released Thursday by the Mortgage Bankers Association. Companies saw their loan volume jump from $164 million on average over the first quarter to $174 million.

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HUD Scorecard Touts Initiatives Despite Housing Health

Housing market conditions remained fragile despite numerous initiatives put forward by the Obama administration, according to a recent scorecard released Thursday by HUD and the Treasury Department. The administration cited numerous industry-respected analytics sources and painted a helpful portrait of the homeownership and refinance endeavors it has made possible. Sources polled for the government gauge of housing and economic health included CoreLogic and Standard & Poor's, among others.

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REITs May Lose 50-Year Exemptions Under SEC Rule

Publicly traded real estate companies, commonly known as Real Estate Investment Trusts, could see their industry fall under new rules and regulations if a new rule-making proposal sees approval by the Securities and Exchange Commission. The federal commission voted Wednesday to investigate whether these companies meet definitions under the Company Investment Act, a law from which publicly traded real estate companies have been exempt for nearly 50 years.

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Appraisers Get New Standards

As of Thursday, appraisers and realtors must now use a new universal grading rubric when it comes to their assessments for properties with government-backed mortgages. Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac recently revised their appraisal guidelines to streamline a sometimes unclear process, but some warn of the potential for fallout among appraisers, realtors, and homeowners unfamiliar with the new standards. Appraisers will need to weigh property values against new codes and abbreviations.

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North Texas Hiring Hub for Lenders

Lewisville, Texas, will gain 700 new employment opportunities courtesy of JPMorgan Chase & Co. The financial institution is set to open a major mortgage servicing center in the area, adding to 2,000 area workers.

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