MBS Day Ahead: More Meaningful Economic Data, Treasury Auctions Begin, Vacations End

Global financial markets were unequivocally still out on holiday breaks yesterday--unofficially in the US and officially in Europe.  There were no major reactions to Geopolitical headlines or any other substantive market movers in the domestic session.  Bond markets ended up very close to unchanged from last weeks latest levels and volume totals were the lowest of the year. Today serves as a better candidate for "first

Conservative Groups Reject Johnson-Crapo Bill Ahead of Key Markup

A coalition of more than two dozen conservative groups sent a letter to members of the Senate Banking Committee Wednesday, urging them to vote against a major bill to overhaul the housing finance market. The legislation, crafted by Sens. Tim Johnson, D-S.D., chairman of the banking panel, and Mike Crapo, R-Idaho, the ranking member, is currently scheduled for a markup starting April 29. The bill, which draws on earlier work by Sens.

Flagstar in Michigan Loses $79 Million on Provision Spike

Flagstar Bancorp in Troy, Mich., reported a significant first-quarter loss as its loan-loss provision more than quintupled. The $9.6-billion-asset company lost $78.9 million, compared to earnings of $22.2 million a year earlier. Flagstars loss of $1.51 a share was well below the average estimate of analysts polled by Bloomberg, who had predicted earnings per share of 15 cents. "Our first-quarter results were largely in line

CFPB Launches Pilot Program for Electronic Mortgage Closings

The Consumer Financial Protection Bureau unveiled a new pilot program on Wednesday designed to allow consumers the ability to electronically review and file mortgage closing documents. The agency simultaneously released guidelines for how lenders could participate in the program, dubbed eClosings, saying it could help consumers who have complained closing documents are too complex and they dont have enough time to review them.

MGIC Jumps as Biggest Profit Since 2007 Calms Mortgage Fear

MGIC Investment Corp., the No. 3 U.S. mortgage insurer, rallied after posting its largest profit since 2007, helping ease concerns that slowing home lending would weigh on results. The insurer had declined 1.3% this year before today amid signs that rising interest rates and climbing home prices were slowing mortgage lending. Wells Fargo & Co. and JPMorgan Chase & Co. reported this month that loan volumes plunged in the first quarter.

Mortgage Applications Fell Last Week as Rates Climbed

Mortgage applications fell for the fourth time in five weeks as fewer Americans made home purchases or refinanced their properties as borrowing costs rose. The Mortgage Bankers Associations index decreased 3.3% in the period ended April 18 from the prior week, the Washington-based trade group reported today. The 2.6% decline in purchases marked the measures first drop in six weeks and ended the longest string of gains

LRES Revamps Its DirectConnect Platform

LRES, a national provider of commercial and residential real estate asset valuations and management, has updated its DirectConnect platform designed to accelerate the valuation ordering process. The revamped LRES DirectConnect enables users to reduce system integration time from four to six months down to two to four weeks, according to a company press release. DirectConnect is joined to the LRES LINK proprietary order management

'The Whole Market' for Mortgage Servicing Rights Frozen? Not Quite

When William Erbey, the executive chairman of mortgage servicer Ocwen Financial, said last week that trades of servicing rights had ground to a halt, he may have been using a bit of hyperbole. The overall market remains robust, though trading of seriously delinquent portfolios has slowed, brokers of mortgage servicing rights say. Buyers and sellers of such assets cannot agree on pricing because probes by regulators could result in

Housing Market Improving at Slower Pace, but There's a Catch

The February edition of the new Multi-Indicator Market Index (MiMi) introduced by Freddie Mac last month indicates that the U.S. housing market overall is recovering at a slightly slower pace than it was in January.  Nonetheless, the report shows that more than half of both the states and the top 50 metropolitan areas are still improving.  MiMi uses proprietary Freddie Mac data and information on local markets to assess where

Mortgage Rates Erase 2 Days of Weakness

Mortgage rates moved lower at a healthy pace today, more than erasing the past two days of weakness, but leaving most of last Thursdays weakness intact. Some of the gains were attributable to todays much weaker than expected reading on New Home Sales earlier this morning.  Downbeat economic data is typically positive for bond markets which results in lower rates.  Todays strength is enough to bring the most prevalently quoted