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Tag Archives: Mortgage Bonds

FOMC Votes No Change in Policy, Foresees Slower Growth

Fed

While noting improvement in economic activity and labor market conditions, the Federal Open Market Committee voted Wednesday to continue its policy of near-zero interest rates and its $85-billion-per-month bond-buying program. At the same time, the Federal Reserve's own economic projections suggested the economy might not grow this year as fast as it expected just three months ago.

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The Bond Exchange to Offer Exclusive NAMB Mortgage Bonds

The National Association of Mortgage Brokers, NAMB, recently announced a partnership with The Bond Exchange to offer mortgage license bonds to all members and their companies. The Bond Exchange has a reputation for negotiating bond prices that are at least as low and sometimes lower than other bond issuers.

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Walnut Place Drops Suit in Countrywide Settlement

A major player in the ongoing Countrywide settlement dropped its suit against the defunct mortgage unit on Monday. According to news services, Walnut Place, otherwise known as Baupost Group, withdrew objections to a proposed $8.5 billion settlement currently under way with Bank of America, which bought Countrywide in 2008. Several reports held that a tentative deal had been reached by institutional investors last year to settle allegations of systematic misrepresentation.

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FOMC Moves Modestly to Boost Economy

Fed

With a lone dissent, the Federal Open Market Committee Wednesday voted no change in the target federal funds rate but agreed to expand its program to stimulate the economy by purchasing Treasury securities. The action is expected to keep mortgage rates at record lows. After the meeting, the FOMC released its quarterly forecast of the economy and interest rates with more members of the Committee seeing higher rates in 2014 than in the prior forecast. The FOMC said "growth in employment has slowed in recent months and the unemployment rate has declined but remains elevated."

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Refinance Applications Spike as Investors Leave Europe: MBA

Investors fleeing Europe once more helped drive mortgage refinance applications to 3.8 percent this week, up from the week before, according to the Mortgage Bankers Association. The MBA's Refinance Index climbed 5.6 percent from the week before, signaling a rise for the third consecutive week and helping reach highs not seen since February earlier this year. The four-week moving average ticked up by 4.83 for the index. The refinance share of mortgage activity leapt to 76.6 percent of total application volume.

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FHFA Unveils Changes to Reform Plan for Secondary Market

The Federal Housing Finance Agency unveiled new additions to the strategic plan it released in February this year, with many changes focused on moving the secondary mortgage market back to private capital sources and creating infrastructure needed to replace Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac. The additions include four principles, such as safety and security for the residential mortgage market, stability and liquidity in housing finance, and preservation of current enterprise assets. The plan, due for enactment if passed by Congress between the years 2013 and 2017.

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Higher Mortgage Rates Unlikely to Drown Housing: Group

The potential for a lift in mortgage rates is unlikely to spell trouble for the housing recovery, according to a recent report. Paul Diggle, a property economist with Capital Economics, said in a note Monday that still-low home prices will help cushion the blow from interest rates. Mortgage rates continue to linger near record lows, with 30-year and 15-year fixed-rate mortgages hovering at or below 4 percent for the past several weeks. Waning confidence in Europe├â┬ó├óÔÇÜ┬¼├óÔÇ×┬ós ability to halt the debt crisis in Greece drives investors to U.S. Treasury debt.

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