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Friday, October 10, 2014

Confidential Mortgage Data is Frequently Leaked

Experts say that estimating how frequently confidential mortgage data is leaked is difficult, because many breaches go unnoticed. For three days in July, however, Bob Segall, a reporter at WTHR-TV in Indianapolis , Indiana , looked into 40 dumpsters behind loan branches and title companies that handle mortgage documents. In 18 of them he discovered sensitive information about various borrowers. "You could see their complete financial lives on paper, dating back 20, 30, 40 years," he said.
"Among the finds inside the mortgage files: a letter from one borrower's counselor saying he was doing well in alcohol rehab..."
Who were the top non-conforming lenders for the first half of 2007? There are no surprises: Countrywide, Wells Fargo, Citibank, Chase, Bank of America, WAMU, Residential Capital, Wachovia, Indymac, and American Home.

Is there any good news out there? Evidently not right now.

    Total Existing Home Sales fell 8.0% and are 19% below a year ago. The national median existing-home price for all housing types was $211,700 in September, down 4.2% from September 2006. Total housing inventory inched up 0.4 percent at the end of September to 4.40 million existing homes available for sale, which represents a 10.5-month supply at the current sales pace.

    The price of the average home Centex sold fell 8% from a year ago, and in some locations prices were slashed 15 to 20 percent, executives said.

    Merrill Lynch took an $8.4 billion hit in the third quarter from revaluing bonds backed by mortgages and other write-downs, and recorded a $2.24 billion loss for the quarter compared with a profit of $1.94 billion a year earlier.

    National City said third-quarter earnings fell 80% and recorded a net loss of $152 million in its mortgage banking business in the third quarter.

    Bank of America issued a short statement announcing the closing of their wholesale operation: “Today Bank of America announced that it will exit the wholesale mortgage business in order to devote increased energy to its expanding retail channels."
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