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Tag Archives: Credit Ratings

10 Most Competitive Housing Markets in the U.S.

With low housing inventory and rising home prices, which city had most homebuyers putting more money down, have high credit scores, and start loan shopping before home shopping? Spoiler Alert: California cities take the top spots.

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S&P Reaches Settlement on Pre-Crash RMBS Ratings

The Department of Justice sued S&P in February 2013, alleging that the credit ratings agency "knowingly and with the intent to defraud, devised, participated in, and executed a scheme to defraud investors" in collateralized debt obligations and residential mortgage-backed securities between 2004 and 2007.

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Justice Department Sues S&P Over Pre-Crisis Ratings

The Justice Department (DoJ) and Standard & Poor's (S&P) are at odds with other over civil fraud charges stemming from an alleged scheme to defraud investors in the lead-up to 2008's financial meltdown. The DoJ filed a civil lawsuit against S&P and its parent company, McGraw-Hill, Monday, alleging that S&P "knowingly [issued] inflated credit ratings" for collateralized debt obligations in the years before the crash, misrepresenting their creditworthiness and understating their risks.

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Fitch: Title Insurance Outlook ‘Stable’ as Recovery Forges On

With revenue up and the housing market showing a sustained recovery, Fitch Ratings says the outlook for the U.S. title insurance industry is "stable." The agency points to improved revenue and reduced expenses as signs of stability. Operating profit margins for Fitch's title universe rose to 10.3 percent in the first nine months of 2012, a dramatic jump from 6.1 percent during the same period in 2011. In addition, title revenues increased by more than 15 percent from January to September as housing markets found solid ground.

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Ocwen Put on Negative Watch After Homeward Announcement

Ocwen made some waves when it announced an agreement to acquire Homeward Residential Holdings in a nearly $750 million deal, but Fitch Ratings is doubtful about the move. The ratings agency announced it has placed Ocwen's "B" long-term Issuer Default Rating (IDR) on Rating Watch Negative following the financial corporation's announcement.

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Previously Strong Vintage Now Faltering: Fitch

Adverse selection is leading to rating downgrades for ├â┬ó├óÔÇÜ┬¼├àÔÇ£one of the strongest U.S. residential mortgage vintages,├â┬ó├óÔÇÜ┬¼├é┬Ø the pre-2005 vintage, according to Fitch Ratings. Residential mortgage-backed securities formed before 2005 "have historically performed well," according to Fitch. In fact, more than 93 percent have already been repaid in full, and principal losses account for less than 1 percent of the $650 billion vintage. Fitch has placed several classes from the pre-2005 vintage on "Rating Watch Negative."

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More Downgrades as Moody’s Goes After Several Banks

Count another major downgrade against the global financial community. On Thursday Moody├â┬ó├óÔÇÜ┬¼├óÔÇ×┬ós Investors Service slashed credit ratings for 15 major financial institutions, including Bank of America, Citigroup, JPMorgan Chase, and Morgan Stanley, among others. The reason for Moody├â┬ó├óÔÇÜ┬¼├óÔÇ×┬ós actions: The biggest banks face too much risk from debt-saddled Europe, earnings volatility, and still-faulty mortgages stateside. The ratings agency grouped the downgraded institutions into three groups. Stocks slid for many of the banks.

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