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February 2015 Article Archive

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MetLife to Pay $123.5M in Mortgage Fraud Settlement
nationalmortgageprofessional.com | February 26, 2015
The U.S. Department of Justice has announced that MetLife Home Loans LLC has agreed to pay $123.5 million to resolve accusations that its MetLife Bank unit violated the False Claims Act by knowingly originating and underwriting Federal Housing Administration (FHA)-insured mortgages that did not meet applicable requirements.
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Fraud Verdict Against Countrywide and BofA Upheld
jdsupra.com | February 26, 2015
BofA’s “hustling” attempt to overturn a $1.27 billion judgment against it and Countrywide—along with the individual defendant identified in the next paragraph, the “Defendants”—in the U.S. District Court for the Southern District of New York for fraud in the sale of loans to Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac has proved unavailing.
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Morgan Stanley settles mortgage probe with fine
dw.de | February 26, 2015
Morgan Stanley said Wednesday it had reached a "preliminary agreement" with US regulators to pay $2.6 billion (2.28 billion euros) in fines for its role in pushing the US financial system to the brink of collapse in 2008 and triggering a global recession.
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Morgan Stanley Reaches $2.6 Billion Settlement Over Mortgage-Backed Securities
buzzfeed.com | February 26, 2015
Morgan Stanley, one of two remaining large independent investment banks, said today that it had reached a preliminary $2.6 billion settlement with the Justice Department over its dealings with mortgage-backed securities before the financial crisis.
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Auto Loan Securitization Probed by U.S., States, Yates Says
bloomberg.com | February 25, 2015
(Bloomberg) -- The Justice Department and state authorities are looking into the securitization of auto loans for possible fraud as part of an effort to seek out emerging areas of abuse, Acting Deputy Attorney General Sally Quillian Yates said.
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Goldman (GS) May Face Civil Lawsuit Over RMBS Violations
zacks.com | February 25, 2015
Legal issues surrounding residential mortgage-backed securities (RMBS) continue to trouble the Wall Street banking giants. The Goldman Sachs Group, Inc. (GS - Analyst Report) revealed in its latest annual filing, the probability of facing a civil lawsuit as a regulatory probe has “preliminarily concluded” that the company has violated federal law regarding its underwriting, securitization and sale of RMBS.
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As Wells Fargo is Accused of Fabricating Foreclosure Papers, Will Banks Keep Escaping Prosecution?
democracynow.org | February 24, 2015
A new internal report says the Justice Department massively overstated its successes in targeting mortgage fraud while in fact ranking it as a low priority for investigation. The Justice Department’s inspector general says despite playing a central role in the nation’s financial crisis, mortgage fraud was deemed either a low priority or not a priority at all. This comes as a recently revealed internal Wells Fargo document appears to guide lawyers step by step on how to fabricate missing documents to foreclose on homeowners. Wells Fargo is the country’s largest mortgage servicer and services some nine million home loans.
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Goldman Sachs (GS) Said to Face Potential Federal Suit in Connecting with pre-Crisis RMBS Sales
streetinsider.com | February 23, 2015
Goldman Sachs (NYSE: GS) is facing a potential federal suit in connection with its residential mortgage-backed security sales leading up to the financial crisis of 2008 - 09.
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The Rich Hide an Estimated 21 Trillion in Offshore Accounts
therealnews.com | February 22, 2015
James S. Henry is a leading economist, attorney and investigative journalist who has written extensively about global issues. James served as Chief Economist at the international consultancy firm McKinsey & Co and as an investigative journalist his work has appeared in numerous publications like Forbes, The Nation, and the The New York Times. He was the lead researcher of the recently released report titled 'The Price of Offshore Revisited.'
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Big Banks Still Use "Robo-Signing" To Fake Documents And Foreclose on Borrowers
web.alternet.org | February 22, 2015
About a year ago, several of the nation’s biggest banks were caught in scandal over “robo-signing” — approving foreclosures without verifying basic information about the loan and fabricating documents to present to courts. For several months, a group of state attorneys general has been attempting to negotiate a settlement with the banks for their mortgage misdeeds.
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Banks May Win Capital Rule Easing in EU's ABS Market Push
bloomberg.com | February 18, 2015
Real estate investment euphoria is widespread. An asset class for which Wall Street has provided little useful information – residential mortgage-backed securities (RMBS) – is especially vulnerable if this euphoria is misplaced.
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The Debt Defense Handbook: Stop Harassment from Debt Collectors
debtdefenseprograms.com | February 18, 2015
THIS IS A WORK OF FICTION. The information contained in this book is purely for educational and entertainment purposes only. Nothing in this book can be construed as a form of legal advice or an act of practicing law. We used the concepts in this book ourselves and they have worked for us. You are advised to consult with a competent legal counsel. Your reliance on the information presented within this book is at your own risk.
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Holder Asks Lawyers to Pursue Bankers in Mortgage Fraud
bloomberg.com | February 18, 2015
(Bloomberg) -- U.S. Attorney General Eric Holder, who forced Wall Street’s biggest banks to pay billions in fines for their roles in the subprime mortgage crisis, is pressing for action against executives at those firms, even as he prepares to leave his post.
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The Devastation Awaiting Residential Mortgage-Backed Securities
valuewalk.com | February 18, 2015
Real estate investment euphoria is widespread. An asset class for which Wall Street has provided little useful information – residential mortgage-backed securities (RMBS) – is especially vulnerable if this euphoria is misplaced.
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Bank of America CEO Brian Moynihan’s compensation falls to $13M
newsobserver.com | February 18, 2015
Bank of America chief executive Brian Moynihan was awarded $13 million for his performance in 2014, a drop of $1 million from the year before as the bank struggles to boost its profitability. Moynihan’s stock bonus fell to $11.5 million, down from $12.5 million, the Charlotte bank disclosed in securities filings late Tuesday. His base salary remained unchanged at $1.5 million, according to a source familiar with the matter. Like the year before, he did not receive a cash bonus, the source said.
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Judge dismisses Prudential mortgage fraud lawsuit against BofA
housingwire.com | February 16, 2015
Feb 6 (Reuters) - A federal judge has thrown out much of Prudential Financial Inc's lawsuit accusing Bank of America Corp of defrauding it before the financial crisis into buying more than $1.9 billion of residential mortgage-backed securities that later soured.
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Mortgage Fraud Risk Down in Q3 2014
selectedloans.com | February 16, 2015
Feb 6 (Reuters) - A federal judge has thrown out much of Prudential Financial Inc's lawsuit accusing Bank of America Corp of defrauding it before the financial crisis into buying more than $1.9 billion of residential mortgage-backed securities that later soured.
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666 troops to get cash in foreclosure case
militarytimes.com | February 16, 2015
Some 666 service members victimized by banks that allegedly foreclosed on their homes illegally in violation of the Servicemembers' Civil Relief Act will receive a combined $88 million from four mortgage servicers, the Justice Department said.
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Fewer Western Pennsylvania homes taken back by banks
triblive.com | February 16, 2015
Banks repossessed fewer homes in the Pittsburgh area last month than a year ago, bucking a state and national trend that suggested lenders are growing more comfortable with tighter foreclosure rules since the housing crisis.
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Is more securitization a good thing?
macrobusiness.com.au | February 16, 2015
Prior to the 2007 Financial Crisis, securitisation was seen as a tool to support economic growth and financial stability by enabling issuers and investors to diversify and manage risk. By transforming a pool of illiquid assets into tradable securities, securitisation frees up bank capital, allowing banks to extend new credit to the real economy, and support the transmission of monetary policy. However, it has the capacity to amplify the flow of credit inside or outside the banking system, increase leverage, exacerbate misaligned incentives in the financial intermediation chain, and, thus, ultimately amplify systemic risk. It was right at the heart of the GFC. Now, Regulators and Bankers are looking for ways to resurrect securitisation, and there are signs of momentum beginning to grow in some markets.
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UNANIMOUS SCOTUS: TILA Rescission Effective on Notice: No Borrower Lawsuit Required
livinglies.wordpress.com | February 14, 2015
The decision is merely a statement of the obvious. Scalia, writing for a UNANIMOUS court said that the statute means what it says. All the decisions in all the states requiring the borrower to file suit to enforce rescission are wrong. The court says the rescission is effected upon notice to the “lender.” What that means to me is that the subsequent foreclosure, non-judicial or judicial is void because there is no mortgage. TILA says that unless the “lender” files suit within a specified period of time the rescission is effective as of the date of notice. It goes on to say that the “lender” just send back all payments and a satisfaction of mortgage and canceled note.
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Bankster Wins - CA AP CT holds statutory defect in late filing of substitution of trustee was "not substantial"
February 13, 2015
This conflicts w/former holdings that defects in failing to file substitution of trustee BEFORE NOD makes foreclosure VOID ab initio (as opposed to just "voidable") because there is now a conflict in appellate rulings on this issue, it has now become RIPE for CA Supreme Court REVIEW.
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S&P Receives A One-Year Suspension For MBS Ratings Misconduct
mondaq.com | February 12, 2015
On January 21, 2015, the US Securities and Exchange Commission brought charges for the very first time against a major rating agency, sanctioning Standard & Poor's Rating Services (S&P) for making misrepresentations and failing to maintain accurate records and controls concerning its rating of certain commercial and residential mortgage- backed securities (CMBS and RMBS). Those sanctions include a one-year ban from rating any new issue US conduit/fusion CMBS transactions and $77 million in payments to the SEC and to the New York State and Massachusetts attorneys general.
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Service Members to Receive Over $123 Million for Unlawful Foreclosures Under the Servicemembers Civil Relief Act
stopforeclosurefraud.com | February 10, 2015
The Justice Department announced today that under its settlements with five of the nation’s largest mortgage servicers, 952 service members and their co-borrowers are eligible to receive over $123 million for non-judicial foreclosures that violated the Servicemembers Civil Relief Act (SCRA). 
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Rescission Heats Up as Borrowers Head Back to Court to Use Supreme Court Reversal
livinglies.wordpress.com | February 8, 2015
For lawyers only: Many homeowners are going back and digging up their notices of rescission. There are cases in state court, federal court and bankruptcy court that could be and probably are effected by the US Supreme Court decision that made it clear that TILA rescission was a unique statutory remedy and that the common law right of rescission should not be used to interpret the explicit statutory remedy that is TILA Rescission.
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Allstate settles mortgage lawsuit against Morgan Stanley
livinglies.wordpress.com | February 5, 2015
(Bloomberg) — Allstate Insurance Co. agreed to settle a 2011 lawsuit accusing Morgan Stanley of fraud over more than $100 million worth of mortgage-backed securities in which the insurer invested.
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Big bank to lay off hundreds of its mortgage staff
mpamag.com | February 4, 2015
Bank of America has announced it is planning to lay off more than 200 employees from its legacy mortgage servicing operations in its Norfolk, Virginia, office. The division of the bank handles troubled mortgages.
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State reaches $125M deal with S&P over shoddy mortgage bond ratings
mpcmagazine.com | February 4, 2015
Standard & Poor’s Ratings Services (S&P) has reached a $125 million settlement over accusations with California’s public pension system, Calpers, involving inflated ratings of mortgage investments.
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New Foreclosure Procedures Put to Test as Number of Cases Climbs in New Jersey
njspotlight.com | February 4, 2015
While the foreclosure crisis eases in most states, NJ hits third-highest total since it started keeping records. Four years after New Jersey courts required lenders to prove they are following the law in foreclosure cases, new procedures and technology have improved the process and provide greater assurance of accuracy, according to court officials.
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BofA fails to overturn $1.27 billion Countrywide fraud verdict
reuters.com | February 4, 2015
(Reuters) - A federal judge on Tuesday rejected Bank of America Corp's bid to throw out a jury verdict finding it liable for the sale of questionable loans to Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac before the financial crisis, which led to a $1.27 billion civil penalty.
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Standard & Poor's Settlement Shows Futility Of Fighting Government Policy
forbes.com | February 4, 2015
The $1.38 billion Standard & Poor’s ratings settlement announced today reminds me of another news item in the New York Times this morning. Venezuela’s secret police have detained several executives of that nation’s biggest pharmacy chain, the Times reports, for the crime of inciting customers to form long lines and create the false impression of shortages. Rejecting any argument that socialist government policies are to blame for widespread shortages of consumer products, Venezuela’s propaganda minister tweeted: “They should explain why they foster lines in the entrances to their stores.”
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Missouri Wrongful Foreclosure: Trial Court Awards over $3 Million Including Punitive Damages and Quiet Title
livinglies.wordpress.com | February 3, 2015
Missouri had been impenetrable. Things change. This case finds that neither the GSE nor anyone else in the chain had the power to enforce the paper because they did not really have ownership of the loan, that their title was false, that quiet title is granted to plaintiffs, that foreclosure was wrongful, that compensatory damages are awarded and that punitive damages would be awarded. Total Judgment $3 million +.
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Two Judges Who Get It About Banks
nytimes.com | February 2, 2015
Big banks hold great sway in Washington these days, far more than troubled homeowners do. But outside the Beltway, many people remain caught in the maw of the financial giants, which is why it is heartening when some judges step into the fray.
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In re: Cynthia Carrsow-Franklin | ORDER SDNY BK Judge Drain: ROBO-SIGNER ADMITS TO MANUFACTURING DOCS…30 pages of “Sock’em” delivered to Wells Fargo and Freddie Mac
stopforeclosurefraud.com | February 2, 2015
It appears from Mr. Kennerty’s deposition transcript, although his testimony on this point was at times quite evasive, that during the period in question in 2010 he signed on average between 50 and 150 original documents a day in connection with Wells Fargo’s administration and enforcement of defaulted loans.
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Moody's Under DOJ Investigation For Subprime Mortgage Ratings
ibtimes.com | February 2, 2015
Moody’s Investor Service is under investigation by the Justice Department for issuing favorable ratings to securities backed with the risky subprime loans that fueled the 2008 financial collapse. Justice Department officials have met with former Moody’s executives in recent months to gather information on the credit rating firm’s practices leading up the recession that began in December 2007, the Wall Street Journal reported Sunday.
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Did Drug Cartels Save the Global Financial System?
fool.com | February 2, 2015
In December 2009, the global financial system was still in crisis. The market had bottomed a short nine months earlier, and the fear of a double-dip recession was palpable.
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Main Street Challenges Dodd-Frank’s Chipping Away at the Constitution
spectator.org | February 2, 2015
“Wall Street Chips Away at Dodd-Frank,” blared a recent front-page headline in the New York Times about bipartisan measures that have passed the U.S. House of Representatives and/or been signed into law that ever-so-slightly lighten the burden of the so-called financial reform rammed through Congress in 2010. “GOP Pushes More Perks For Wall Street...” reads the home page of the Huffington Post under the picture of establishment pillar Jamie Dimon, CEO of JP Morgan Chase.
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NY Federal judge slams Wells Fargo for forged mortgage docs
nypost.com | February 2, 2015
Judge Robert Drain has a message for Wells Fargo: “Forged” foreclosure documents don’t cut it in New York’s federal courts. In a stunning 30-page decision on January 28, Drain, a federal bankruptcy judge in New York’s Southern District, blasted Wells Fargo, America’s largest mortgage servicer, for false documents it used in trying to prove its right to foreclose on Westchester County resident Cynthia Carrsow Franklin’s home.
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Obama's housing recovery plan could bring another Great Recession
foxnews.com | February 2, 2015
When President Obama announced two weeks ago that he was going to lower the insurance premium for risky FHA mortgages, the country reacted with a yawn. Americans seemed to be asking: What’s that got to do with me?
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Court Turns Jaundiced Eye on Wells Fargo Robo-Mischief
ncbrc.org | February 1, 2015
Wells Fargo lacked standing to assert a claim pursuant to a Note secured by a Deed of Trust, where a forged indorsement in blank did not give it “holder” status under applicable Texas law. In re Franklin, No. 10?20010 (Bankr. S.D. N.Y. Jan. 29, 2015).
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Job Alert: Loan Pricing & Securitization-Senior
simplyhired.com | February 1, 2015
The firm's Multifamily division is responsible for providing liquidity to the secondary mortgage market for multifamily loans. The Capital Markets area of Multifamily is responsible for running the division's securitization platform, the most popular of which is the K program.
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Got a student loan? The government is putting your data at risk
humanevents.com | February 1, 2015
If you have a federal student loan, your private information is in danger. And it seems the federal government really doesn’t give a damn. If you slip into default on your promised repayments, the Federal Student Loan Administration gives your data to a pool of private companies that collect the debt.
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Fraud Risk Grows as HELOC Lending Rises
themreport.com | February 1, 2015
As improvements in home values spark a rise in equity lending, analysts are concerned that fast-growing segment of the market is attracting more fraudulent behavior.
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Are Bondholders Looking To Fire Ocwen?
livinglies.wordpress.com | February 1, 2015
Chickens are coming home to roost. Just read the letter. Anyone who is litigating a case where Ocwen is involved in any way in the chain of title or ownership of the loan paperwork should read this in detail.
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Top GMP officer cleared of mortgage fraud demands answers over 'missing page' of evidence backing his story
manchestereveningnews.co.uk | February 1, 2015
A senior police officer cleared of fraud has demanded answers after it emerged a key page of a prosecution witness statement vanished. A jury took just 20 minutes to clear Chief Inspector John Buttress, 48, of a charge of mortgage fraud.
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The Causation Link Between Securitization and Fraud, Used Car Edition
beforeitsnews.com | February 1, 2015
When I practiced in the mid-1990s, I occasionally worked on projects we called “asset securitizations.” We didn’t talk about it to our friends or families, because their eyes would glaze over and then they would pass out from boredom. Because of our client base, our asset securitizations were generally either used car loans from the finance side of large auto companies or franchise loan securitizations from oil and gas companies.
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