MBS RECAP: Bond Markets Navigate Quarter-End Without Too Much Drama

Posted To: MBS Commentary

Considering that today's trading range wasn't meaningfully wider than Friday's AND that closing prices look like they'll fall inside Friday's range, today has turned out to be a relatively drama-free month-end/quarter-end trading session. That didn't look like it would be the case as Fannie 3.5s made a dash from the highs to the lows at 9:30am, but they recovered into the afternoon. Economic data didn't play a big role today as bond markets were generally moving in the opposite direction from that suggested by the data. Bigger considerations included quarter-end trading needs and corporate bond market …read more

Short Sales Fall Sharply in First Quarter

Posted To: MND NewsWire

The Federal Housing Finance Agency said on Friday that Freddie Mac and Fannie Mae continue to complete thousands of foreclosure prevention actions in each reporting period. The two assisted homeowners with a combined total of 88,800 loan modifications , forbearances, and other assistance. This brings the total to 3.2 million since the two government sponsored enterprises (GSEs) were put in conservatorship in 2008. That total includes 1.6 million loan modifications. Foreclosure previous actions have helped more than 2.6 million borrowers stay in their homes and another half-million have been helped to exit home ownership without a …read more

Mortgage Rates Unchanged to Begin Short Week

Posted To: Mortgage Rate Watch

Mortgage rates were unchanged today. More often than not, when the average rate is unchanged, it’s due to a balance between some lenders offering higher rates and others offering lower rates. Today, however, there were more than a few lenders who simply didn’t make any significant changes to Friday’s latest rate sheets. That said, some may be offering slight improvements this afternoon as underlying market conditions have improved. The most prevalently quoted conforming 30yr fixed rate for best-case scenarios ( best-execution ) remains at 4.125% , with any improvements coming in the form of lower …read more

Defense of VA Fees; Force-Placed Insurance Update; Overcoming Non-QM Loan Liabilities

Posted To: Pipeline Press

Suddenly the entire industry seems interested in three things: using the Federal Home Loan Banks as a pseudo-warehouse line, jumbo deals, and force-place insurance. Regarding this last issue, Kate Berry with American Banker wrote an article of interest: ” FHFA Should Sue Banks on Force-Placed Insurance: Watchdog “. “The Federal Housing Finance Agency should sue force-placed insurers and large banks for inflating prices and generating losses for Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac, the agency’s inspector general says . Fannie and Freddie suffered $158 million in ‘financial harm’ in 2012 alone from reimbursing servicers for ‘excessively priced’ …read more

MBS Week Ahead: Action-Packed 3.5 Day Week Ends with NFP

Posted To: MBS Commentary

Pound for pound, this is one of the busiest weeks of the year . There are relevant economic reports every day as well as Fed speakers and the last trading day of Q2. Wrapping it all up (sort of) is June Nonfarm Payrolls. This time, however, it arrives on Thursday due to the Independence Day holiday, and it’s followed by several other moderately important reports, all before the day ends 3 hours early. All this transpires against a bond market backdrop with slightly higher than average stakes. After holding ground without going over 2.66 in June, …read more

MBS RECAP: Strong Start And Another Afternoon Fade

Posted To: MBS Commentary

For a third straight day, bond markets improved into the domestic session and gave back gains in the afternoon (chart below). Of those three days, today was the most gradual on both accounts with no meaningful data to drive the morning trade and no major motivation for the afternoon weakness. In a nutshell, the end-of-week levels were intact by yesterday morning, and the intervening hours have simply seen ebbs and flows relating to quarter-end trading. While that benefited bonds early, the balance shifted toward stocks in the afternoon. Shorter-maturity Treasuries benefited at the expense of the …read more

Mortgage Rates at 1-Month Lows; Volatility Ahead

Posted To: Mortgage Rate Watch

Mortgage rates moved lower again , with the best options available in the morning hours. After that, bond markets including MBS (the mortgage-backed-securities that most directly affect mortgage rates) moved back into weaker territory on the day, prompting some lenders to raise rates in the afternoon. The most prevalently quoted conforming 30yr fixed rate for best-case scenarios ( best-execution ) remains at 4.125% , with most borrowers seeing today’s improvement in the form of lower closing costs. Expressed in terms of ‘effective rate,’ the drop in closing costs amounts to 0.02%. Even after the afternoon …read more

Housing Improving but Rental Crisis Looms

Posted To: MND NewsWire

The U.S. housing recovery should regain its footing, but also faces a number of challenges . Tight credit, still elevated unemployment, and mounting student loan debt among young Americans are responsible for moderating growth and keeping millennials and other first-time homebuyers out of the market according to the latest edition of The State of the Nation’s Housing released today by the Harvard Joint Center for Housing Studies. “The housing recovery is following the path of the broader economy,” says Chris Herbert, the Center’s research director. “As long as the economy remains on the path of slow, …read more

Marketing HARP; Stearns’ Name Change; LEAP News & Lender Updates

Posted To: Pipeline Press

This week I have been fortunate to spend some time with members of the Mortgage Bankers of Hawaii. Honolulu, like so many other areas, has its share of lack-of-inventory issues impacting both lenders and Realtors. But now there are some unbelievably nice projects planned near downtown and Waikiki. I mention this because the hundreds of units will be impacted by the same forces that help shape real estate markets in places like Toronto, Seattle, Miami, San Francisco, and Manhattan: new foreign buyers coming in with plenty of cash. And while this helps the local economy to …read more