Citigroup Settles Mortgage Inquiry for $7 Billion #refinance


#citifinancial mortgage

#

The New York Times

Citigroup Settles Mortgage Inquiry for $7 Billion

By MICHAEL CORKERY

July 14, 2014

Updated, 8:29 p.m. | The $7 billion deal that Citigroup agreed to strike with the Justice Department involves one of the largest cash penalties ever paid to settle a federal inquiry into a bank suspected of mortgage misdeeds.

But another major component of the settlement has little to do with troubled mortgages. As part of the deal, Citigroup has also agreed to provide $180 million in financing to build affordable rental housing.

The unusual arrangement, which was outlined in the deal on Monday, underscores how difficult it remains for Citigroup to shed its rocky past and how federal prosecutors are getting creative in holding the nation’s big banks accountable for losses that crippled the global financial system in 2008.

Like other settlements the federal government has signed with Wall Street, Citigroup’s deal also requires the bank to modify mortgages of struggling homeowners. But Citigroup’s mortgage business has shrunk appreciably since the financial crisis, and the bank doesn’t service enough troubled mortgages to satisfy the monetary settlement terms for homeowner relief. So the bank agreed to finance affordable rental housing in unspecified “high cost of living areas.”

Wall Street watchdog groups and housing advocates said the terms of the $7 billion settlement highlight how the federal government has fallen short in its effort to hold banks accountable, noting that neither Citigroup nor any of its executives have been criminally charged for the bank’s mortgage problems.

In announcing the deal on Monday, Attorney General Eric H. Holder Jr. said the hard-fought settlement did not absolve the bank or its employees from facing criminal charges. “The bank’s misconduct was egregious,” he said. “As a result of their assurances that toxic financial products were sound, Citigroup was able to expand its market share and increase profits.”

The Justice Department said Citigroup routinely ignored warnings that a significant portion of the mortgages it was packaging and selling to investors in 2006 and 2007 had underwriting defects. In one internal email cited by prosecutors. a Citigroup trader wrote “went thru Diligence Reports and think that we should start praying … I would not be surprised if half of these loans went down.” But the bank securitized the loans anyway.

The Justice Department said it was this type of evidence that enabled prosecutors to extract a $4 billion cash penalty from Citigroup — the largest payment of its kind. That money will go into the United States Treasury ’s general fund and is not earmarked for any particular use.

The deal also includes $2.5 billion in so-called soft dollars designated for the financing of rental housing, mortgage modifications, down payment assistance and donations to legal aid groups, among other measures intended to provide relief to consumers.

The Federal Deposit Insurance Corporation ’s portion of the settlement — about $208 million — will reimburse creditors in three failed banks that owned large mortgage security portfolios — Citizens National Bank in Illinois, Strategic Capital Bank in Illinois and Colonial Bank in Alabama.

State attorneys general in California, Illinois, Massachusetts, New York and Delaware will receive a total of $291 million. California, for example, will reimburse its two largest public pension funds for mortgage-related losses they suffered during the financial crisis.

The payments to the states are tax-deductible, but the federal penalty is not.

In a boon for Citigroup, the deal with the Justice Department forgoes any potential cases against the bank related to collateralized debt obligations. or C.D.O.s, which were often tied to mortgages. While Citi was a relatively small player in the mortgage securities market, it was a leader on Wall Street in C.D.O.s.

As part of its rental housing commitment, Citigroup will provide financing to projects that may result in a loss to the bank. The Justice Department said the bank’s involvement would help fill a gap left by cities and states that cut funding for affordable housing because of the recession.

“We hope this measure will bring relief to families who were pushed into the rental market after losing their homes in the wake of the financial crisis,” said Tony West, the Justice Department’s lead negotiator with the bank. But for many borrowers who have already gone through foreclosures, the settlement comes too late, consumer advocates say.

“Seven billion sounds like a lot. But compared to the number of families that lost their homes, it is not very much at all,” said Isaac Simon Hodes, a community organizer with Lynn United for Change, a group that advocates on behalf of Boston-area residents facing foreclosure.

The bank must complete the consumer relief measures by the end of 2018.

In a call with reporters on Monday, Citigroup’s chief financial officer, John C. Gerspach, declined to say how much it would cost the bank to satisfy the consumer relief portions of the settlement. “These are hard-dollar costs,” Mr. Gerspach said.

Legal costs associated with the settlement dealt an immediate hit to Citigroup’s financial results. The bank took a $3.8 billion charge in the second quarter, leading profits to tumble 96 percent from a year ago.

Including the charge and one-time items, Citigroup earned $181 million, or 3 cents a share, compared with $4.18 billion, or $1.34 a share, in the second quarter of 2013.

Still, investors drove Citigroup’s shares up 3 percent on Monday, relieved that a settlement had been completed and heartened that the bank’s latest results were better than expected.

Excluding the mortgage settlement charge, Citigroup beat Wall Street’s analysts’ profit expectations, as its slumping trading revenue recovered slightly.

But much of that good news was overshadowed by the mortgage deal, which came after months of wrangling between prosecutors and the bank’s lawyers.

At the outset, the bank had expected to pay a fraction of that $7 billion. Citigroup’s first offer to settle the case was $363 million in April, revealing a wide disparity between what prosecutors and bank officials thought was an appropriate penalty.

That disparity stemmed largely from a disagreement over how to calculate the suspected harm that Citigroup’s mortgage securities caused investors. Citigroup linked its initial offer to the bank’s relatively small share of the market for mortgage securities, people briefed on the talks said. The Justice Department, however, rejected that argument, emphasizing instead what it saw as Citigroup’s level of culpability based on emails and other evidence it had uncovered.

The jockeying seemed to continue to the very end. In announcing the settlement, the Justice Department held a news conference in Washington at exactly the same time as bank executives discussed second-quarter results with Wall Street analysts.

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3, 4, 5, 7 & 10 Year Closed Term Mortgages #monthly #mortgage #payment


#fixed mortgage

#

3, 4, 5, 7 & 10 Year Closed Term Mortgages

Right for you if:

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  • All mortgage applications are subject to meeting Scotiabank’s standard credit criteria, residential mortgage standards and maximum permitted loan amounts. Read more
  • † Some conditions apply. This offer can be changed or withdrawn at anytime without notice and may not be combined with any other discounts, offers or promotions. You will be required to repay the Cash Back you receive if your mortgage is paid out, assumed, transferred or renewed before maturity.
  • * The original principal amount of your mortgage is the principal amount when your mortgage was first entered into with Scotiabank or, if your mortgage was assigned to us from another lender, the principal amount outstanding at the time of assignment. For a Scotia Flex Value® mortgage, the increase in your payment will be calculated based on the amount of your principal and interest payment at the time of the payment increase. Other conditions may apply.
  • **The Match-a-Payment and Miss-a-Payment are not available during an interest-only portion of any progress draw construction mortgage and may not be available depending on the mortgage solution you select. Other conditions may apply.
    Mortgage Rates Information
    • Quarterly Results Our Q3 results have been released.
    • Press Release Scotiabank and the Overwaitea Food Group
      join forces to offer Canadians “More Rewards”.

Creating a self signed wildcard certificate for IIS7 #ssl,iis #7,.net #2.0


#

Creating a self signed wildcard certificate for IIS7 September, 2008

Recently I had the need to setup multiple SSL enabled sites on my local machine for development. These sites all had the same root domain but differed by sub domain. Traditionally you need to have a certificate and an IP address per SSL binding because of a “chicken or the egg” problem resolving the host headers in an encrypted HTTP conversation. If you have multiple sites with a common root domain that require SSL you can get around this limitation by using a wildcard certificate for all those sites.

So first I setup mappings in my hosts file ( \System32\drivers\etc\hosts) as follows:

# SomeSite Dev Mappings
127.0.0.1 www.dev.somesite.net
127.0.0.1 services.dev.somesite.net
127.0.0.1 admin.dev.somesite.net

Next I need to create a self signed wildcard certificate. If you tried the self signed cert “feature” in IIS7 you probably quickly discovered that it is pretty much worthless since you cannot define the common name (CN), it’s automatically set to the host name (Why does MS have a habit of giving you a powerful, feature rich car that can only make right turns?). One way to get around this is to generate your self signed cert with a tool and add it to the local machine store. IIS6 ships with a util called selfssl but this requires you to install the IIS6 ResKit (See more about that here ). While this works, it bothers me to install tools from a previous version of IIS to accomplish this. Shouldn’t the newer version of IIS do more than it’s predecessor? One other alternative I found on the internets is to use the certificate creation tool that ships with the .NET 2.0 SDK. For some reason this “feels” better than using a tool from IIS6, probably just a mental thing. Plus you probably already have the SDK installed and are using it.

First create the self signed issuer certificate which will be set as a root cert authority (Fill in the red items):

“C:\Program Files\Microsoft SDKs\Windows\v6.0A\bin\makecert.exe” -n “CN= My Company Development Root CA ,O= My Company ,OU= Development ,L= Wallkill ,S= NY ,C= US ” -pe -ss Root -sr LocalMachine -sky exchange -m 120 -a sha256 -len 2048 -r

NOTE: SDKs are in “Program Files (x86)” on 64-bit installs (via rocjoe).

Next create a cert for your sites that is issued from this authority. You must specify the common name (CN= ) you entered above in the issuer name field below (-in ). Also I’m creating a wildcard certificate that will serve all sites with the dev.somesite.net root domain as this is a requirement to use host headers. If I add other sites in the future with a different subdomain I can choose this certificate and all is good. Specifying an asterisk as the subdomain will signify this (Fill in the red items):

“C:\Program Files\Microsoft SDKs\Windows\v6.0A\bin\makecert.exe” -n “CN= *. dev.somesite.net ” -pe -ss My -sr LocalMachine -sky exchange -m 120 -in ” My Company Development Root CA ” -is Root -ir LocalMachine -a sha256 -eku 1.3.6.1.5.5.7.3.1

You should now see this cert show up in the IIS manager on the “Server Certificates” page:

UPDATE: You can now set the SSL host header in IIS Manager as of IIS 8.0.

Now again, MS gets you part of the way there in the UI but not all the way. As in IIS6 (SP1+) you cannot specify a host header for SSL bindings in the IIS7 UI because of, as mentioned above, issues with resolving the host headers in an encrypted HTTP request. But since we are using a wildcard certificate these issues are moot and IIS can do it but we have to configure it through the command line with the new appcmd util. The following command must be executed on each site that requires SSL. This command will create the SSL binding and set the host header. Make sure you specify the correct site name and host header for each site (In red):

C:\Windows\System32\inetsrv\appcmd set site /site.name: MySite /+bindings.[protocol=’https’,bindingInformation=’*:443: www.dev.somesite.net ‘]

Next go to the site bindings and you’ll now see an SSL binding with a host header defined (Before this field would be disabled for SSL). You will need to select the the wildcard certificate you created earlier in the cert drop down and save your changes.


SCCM Third Party Patch Management #sccm #third #party #patch #management, #sccm #patch, #sccm #patch #deployment,


#

Third Party Patch Management using Microsoft SCCM

Supports patching of 250 + third party applications

Microsoft SCCM has a great infrastructure to manage desktops and their applications. But, one of the limitations of SCCM is its inability to patch non Microsoft applications. This is a source of inconvenience for IT administrators as they have to work with multiple patch management tools in order to update all business applications in the network, making this task highly time consuming.

Patch Connect Plus is a tool that helps deploy patches to over 250 third party applications such as Adobe applications, Java and WinRAR using your existing Microsoft System Center Configuration Manager server. Hence, delivering a solution to the problem by integrating with your existing SCCM patch management infrastructure.

Automate non-Microsoft patch management

Protect your systems from security threats with regular patching. Schedule regular scans and gain vulnerability information of the systems managed. Deploy patches to the vulnerable systems automatically using SCCM patch management infrastructure.

Get the most out of your SCCM investment

Using Patch Connect Plus with your existing SCCM framework will help you patch almost any application. Hence, you overcome the requirement of having yet another IT solution for Patch management of third party applications. Also by using the same SCCM console, you overcome the need of learning about a new console for third party patch management alone.

Patch only required applications

Approve patches only to the required applications which are significant to you. Therefore, gain higher control over the applications which you want to patch.

Notifications

Receive the status reports of the patches available, last database updated time and new products being supported by Patch Connect Plus.

Intelligent patching

Deploy patches to the applications when they are not in use. Hence, providing reliability to the deployment process by adding precision which leads to the success of patching of applications in the right manner.

Great user experience

Patch Connect Plus provides its users with convenience of easy installation and one time setup requirement. Also, the UI is easy to understand with support documents at every step to help users.

Available in 2 editions

Patch Connect Plusfor Microsoft SCUP

Readily available updates to patch via SCUP catalog.

Patch Connect Plusfor Microsoft SCCM

Fully automated patching using SCCM infrastructure.


Bankruptcy – Estate Planning Attorneys – Warrenton, VA #bankruptcy #attorney, #bankruptcy #lawyer, #chapter #7, #chapter


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Our commitment to you is to provide:

Superior legal representation – We are known as straight-shooters. We will not “candy coat” your case. As your attorneys, we believe it is our duty to provide sound advice and counsel that will guide you to the best possible financial outcome.

Individualized client services – We treat each case as if it were my only case. If you pay for services you deserve to get your money’s worth! Our philosophy is to treat our clients with the dedication they deserve. Our goal is to earn the money we are paid and that requires unwavering dedication to your case.

Effective legal strategy – We will provide you options. You must choose the path. But, we will counsel you on what we believe is your best course of action. We look, not only to the short term, but also to your long term success. Bankruptcy will not do you any good if it does not fix what ails you!

A commitment to success – We strive to make your financial life better and more stable and secure. You deserve a fresh start! Let us help you get it.

Anything less is unacceptable!

Joh n Goetz Law, PLC is a general practice law office located in Warrenton, Virginia. We assist our clients with bankruptcy and estate planning.

T he law office serves clients in Warrenton, Gainesville, C ul peper, Front Royal, and the surrounding areas. Its focus is on bankruptcy services for individuals and small businesses.

W h ether you are in over your head, financially, or you want to p reserve your assets for you and your children’s futures, John P. Goetz, Esq. and James M. McMinn, Esq. Attorneys and Counsellors at Law, are here to help you.

P lease take a moment to review the informatio n on this website. It may be helpful for you in your decision making process.

I f you would like to discuss your financial future with a seasoned and caring professional, we are here for you. Feel free to contact us to schedule a free*, no hassle and no obligation consultation.

*Free initial consultations are offered to individuals who are considering filing for bankruptcy and for initial estate planning. All other consultations are performed at an hourly rate of $275.00 per hour. All fees for office visits or consultations are due at the time services are provided.

Thank you for contacting John Goetz of John Goetz Law, PLC. Your request was successfully sent. It is John’s desire to assist you with your situation. John treats everyone with the same personal attention they deserve; therefore, he will contact you directly.

Soon, John will reach out to you, using the preferred method you selected in your submission. If he is unable to reach you using this method, he will try contacting you using any alternate means of contact you provide. If you would like to contact John directly, feel free to call him at (540)359-6605. Whenever possible, John will answer his own telephone. Otherwise, you may email John at [email protected] and he will respond to your email soon after receipt.

John P. Goetz, Esq.
John Goetz Law, PLC
75 W. Lee St. Suite 104
Warrenton, VA 20186
Telephone: (540)359-6605
Fax: (540)359-6610
Email: [email protected]

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Obama – s Loan Modification Plan: 7 Things You Need to Know #fixed #mortgage


#obama mortgage plan

#

Obama’s Loan Modification Plan: 7 Things You Need to Know

At the heart of the President Barack Obama’s ambitious plan to rescue the housing market is the conviction that restructuring distressed mortgages will keep struggling borrowers in their homes and help insert a floor beneath plummeting property values. With $75 billion dedicated to reworking troubled loans, that’s a big bet—especially considering that a top banking regulator said last December that almost 53 percent of loans modified in the first quarter of 2008 went bad again within six months. But supporters argue that mortgage modifications need to be properly engineered to work—and many early ones weren’t. To that end, the Obama administration on Wednesday unveiled fresh details on its plan to restructure at-risk loans and help as many as four million home owners avoid foreclosure. Here are seven things you need to know about Obama’s loan modification program.

1. Payments, not prices. The plan centers on the belief that struggling borrowers will stay in their homes—even as values decline sharply—as long as they can make their monthly payments. Although not everyone agrees with this, billionaire investor Warren Buffett endorsed the philosophy in his most recent letter to shareholders. “Commentary about the current housing crisis often ignores the crucial fact that most foreclosures do not occur because a house is worth less than its mortgage (so-called “upside-down” loans),” Buffett wrote. “Rather, foreclosures take place because borrowers can’t pay the monthly payment that they agreed to pay.”

2. Thirty-one percent. To that end, the administration’s plan requires participating loan servicers to reduce monthly payments to no more than 38 percent of the borrower’s gross monthly income. The government would then chip in to bring payments down further, to no more than 31 percent of the borrower’s monthly income. In lowering the payment, the servicer would first reduce the interest rate to as low as 2 percent. If that’s not enough to hit the 31 percent threshold, they would then extend the terms of the loan to up to 40 years. If that’s still not enough, the servicer would forebear loan principal at no interest. The plan does not, however, require servicers to reduce mortgage principal, which Richard Green, the director of the Lusk Center for Real Estate at USC, considers a shortcoming. “For underwater loans, if you don’t write down the balance to be less than the value of the house, people still have an incentive to default,” Green says. “Writing down the principal first instead of last—which is what [the Obama administration is] proposing—makes sense to me.”

3. Cash incentives. To encourage participation, servicers will be paid $1,000 for each modification and will get an additional $1,000 payout each year for as many as three years, as long as the borrower continues making payments. Borrowers, meanwhile, can get up to $1,000 knocked off the principal of their loan each year for as many as five years if they make their payments on time. Neither party can receive the cash incentives until the modified loan payments have been made for at least three months.

4. Financial hardship. The Obama administration is pitching its plan as an effort to help responsible homeowners ensnared in the historic housing slump and painful recession—not speculators. As such, only owner-occupied, primary residences with outstanding principal balances of up to $729,750 are eligible. Occupancy status will be verified through documents, such as the borrower’s credit report. In addition, the program is designed to target homeowners who are undergoing “serious hardships”—such as a loss of income—which have put them at risk of default. To participate, borrowers will have to sign an affidavit of financial hardship and verify their income with documents. “If we would have had such stringent verification over the last four or five years, we probably wouldn’t be in as bad a position as we are in,” says Richard Moody, the chief economist at Mission Residential. But while Moody has no objection to such verification, obtaining documents from so many homeowners could be an onerous effort. “It’s going to be a very time-consuming process,” he says. Only loans originated on or before Jan. 1, 2009, are eligible, and modified payments will remain in place for five years. Now that the administration’s plan is out, lenders are free to begin modifying loans.

5. Net present value. To determine if a particular mortgage will be modified, the servicer will perform a so-called net present value test. The test compares the expected cash flow that the loan would generate if it is modified with the expected cash flow it would generate if it isn’t. If the modified loan is expected to produce more cash flow for the mortgage holder, the servicer is to restructure the loan. Howard Glaser, a mortgage industry consultant and a U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development official during the Clinton administration, called this component of the plan “clever,” arguing that it would work to ensure broad participation. “When you apply the formula, the loans that are modified are the ones that are in the best economic interest of the investors to modify,” Glaser says. “The federal subsidy for the payment on the modification…tips the scale toward modification as a better deal for the investor.”

6. Second liens. The Obama plan also addresses the issue of second liens—such as home equity loans or home equity lines of credit—by offering incentives to extinguish them. But key details on this component of the plan remained unclear. “Distinguishing the second lien is really important,” Green says. “[But] exactly how they are going to convince the second lien holder to do this is not clear to me at all.”

7. Will it work? Moody argues that while the plan may reduce foreclosures for primary residences, it could lead to a spike in defaults for another group of homeowners. Although he supports the administration’s efforts to focus the initiative on primary residences, Moody notes that “it could be the case that a lot of [real estate speculators] have been just hanging on waiting to see exactly what the details are of this [plan],” Moody says. Now that it’s clear the Obama plan leaves speculators out, “we could actually see a spike in foreclosures or at least mortgage defaults among this group.”

Glaser, meanwhile, worries that lenders may soon be overwhelmed by inquiries from homeowners looking to participate. “Starting today, millions of borrowers are going to start to call their lenders to see whether or not they are eligible,” he said. “And I’m not sure that the financial services industry has the capacity to handle these inquiries.”


Obama – s Loan Modification Plan: 7 Things You Need to Know #reverse #mortgage #calculator


#obama mortgage plan

#

Obama’s Loan Modification Plan: 7 Things You Need to Know

At the heart of the President Barack Obama’s ambitious plan to rescue the housing market is the conviction that restructuring distressed mortgages will keep struggling borrowers in their homes and help insert a floor beneath plummeting property values. With $75 billion dedicated to reworking troubled loans, that’s a big bet—especially considering that a top banking regulator said last December that almost 53 percent of loans modified in the first quarter of 2008 went bad again within six months. But supporters argue that mortgage modifications need to be properly engineered to work—and many early ones weren’t. To that end, the Obama administration on Wednesday unveiled fresh details on its plan to restructure at-risk loans and help as many as four million home owners avoid foreclosure. Here are seven things you need to know about Obama’s loan modification program.

1. Payments, not prices. The plan centers on the belief that struggling borrowers will stay in their homes—even as values decline sharply—as long as they can make their monthly payments. Although not everyone agrees with this, billionaire investor Warren Buffett endorsed the philosophy in his most recent letter to shareholders. “Commentary about the current housing crisis often ignores the crucial fact that most foreclosures do not occur because a house is worth less than its mortgage (so-called “upside-down” loans),” Buffett wrote. “Rather, foreclosures take place because borrowers can’t pay the monthly payment that they agreed to pay.”

2. Thirty-one percent. To that end, the administration’s plan requires participating loan servicers to reduce monthly payments to no more than 38 percent of the borrower’s gross monthly income. The government would then chip in to bring payments down further, to no more than 31 percent of the borrower’s monthly income. In lowering the payment, the servicer would first reduce the interest rate to as low as 2 percent. If that’s not enough to hit the 31 percent threshold, they would then extend the terms of the loan to up to 40 years. If that’s still not enough, the servicer would forebear loan principal at no interest. The plan does not, however, require servicers to reduce mortgage principal, which Richard Green, the director of the Lusk Center for Real Estate at USC, considers a shortcoming. “For underwater loans, if you don’t write down the balance to be less than the value of the house, people still have an incentive to default,” Green says. “Writing down the principal first instead of last—which is what [the Obama administration is] proposing—makes sense to me.”

3. Cash incentives. To encourage participation, servicers will be paid $1,000 for each modification and will get an additional $1,000 payout each year for as many as three years, as long as the borrower continues making payments. Borrowers, meanwhile, can get up to $1,000 knocked off the principal of their loan each year for as many as five years if they make their payments on time. Neither party can receive the cash incentives until the modified loan payments have been made for at least three months.

4. Financial hardship. The Obama administration is pitching its plan as an effort to help responsible homeowners ensnared in the historic housing slump and painful recession—not speculators. As such, only owner-occupied, primary residences with outstanding principal balances of up to $729,750 are eligible. Occupancy status will be verified through documents, such as the borrower’s credit report. In addition, the program is designed to target homeowners who are undergoing “serious hardships”—such as a loss of income—which have put them at risk of default. To participate, borrowers will have to sign an affidavit of financial hardship and verify their income with documents. “If we would have had such stringent verification over the last four or five years, we probably wouldn’t be in as bad a position as we are in,” says Richard Moody, the chief economist at Mission Residential. But while Moody has no objection to such verification, obtaining documents from so many homeowners could be an onerous effort. “It’s going to be a very time-consuming process,” he says. Only loans originated on or before Jan. 1, 2009, are eligible, and modified payments will remain in place for five years. Now that the administration’s plan is out, lenders are free to begin modifying loans.

5. Net present value. To determine if a particular mortgage will be modified, the servicer will perform a so-called net present value test. The test compares the expected cash flow that the loan would generate if it is modified with the expected cash flow it would generate if it isn’t. If the modified loan is expected to produce more cash flow for the mortgage holder, the servicer is to restructure the loan. Howard Glaser, a mortgage industry consultant and a U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development official during the Clinton administration, called this component of the plan “clever,” arguing that it would work to ensure broad participation. “When you apply the formula, the loans that are modified are the ones that are in the best economic interest of the investors to modify,” Glaser says. “The federal subsidy for the payment on the modification…tips the scale toward modification as a better deal for the investor.”

6. Second liens. The Obama plan also addresses the issue of second liens—such as home equity loans or home equity lines of credit—by offering incentives to extinguish them. But key details on this component of the plan remained unclear. “Distinguishing the second lien is really important,” Green says. “[But] exactly how they are going to convince the second lien holder to do this is not clear to me at all.”

7. Will it work? Moody argues that while the plan may reduce foreclosures for primary residences, it could lead to a spike in defaults for another group of homeowners. Although he supports the administration’s efforts to focus the initiative on primary residences, Moody notes that “it could be the case that a lot of [real estate speculators] have been just hanging on waiting to see exactly what the details are of this [plan],” Moody says. Now that it’s clear the Obama plan leaves speculators out, “we could actually see a spike in foreclosures or at least mortgage defaults among this group.”

Glaser, meanwhile, worries that lenders may soon be overwhelmed by inquiries from homeowners looking to participate. “Starting today, millions of borrowers are going to start to call their lenders to see whether or not they are eligible,” he said. “And I’m not sure that the financial services industry has the capacity to handle these inquiries.”


MD – Washington DC Bankruptcy Lawyer at Judd Law Firm #chapter #7 #bankruptcy, #what #is


#

Law Firm of Kevin D. Judd, P.L.L.C.

Washington DC Bankruptcy Lawyer and MD Bankruptcy Lawyer

Has your debt become unmanageable. Are you receiving harassing phone calls from creditors at work and at home? If you are experiencing financial distress or if you lost your job and are facing the possibility of losing your house or car, a Washington DC bankruptcy lawyer at the Law Firm of Kevin D. Judd may be able to help. This may include filing for Chapter 7 bankruptcy or filing Chapter 13 bankruptcy. As a result of these needs, we designed this website to familiarize you with the consumer bankruptcy process and to give you options.

What is Bankruptcy and How Can Filing Bankruptcy Help Me?

The decision to file bankruptcy is never easy. However, there are cases when protecting your home and assets can only be achieved using the nation’s bankruptcy laws. Because of this, you you should seek the professional advice of a bankruptcy attorney to discuss your options and understand what happens when you file bankruptcy, as well as Chapter 7 vs Chapter 13 bankruptcy.
Read More

From Kevin s Blog

The IRS has begun using private collection companies to collect tax debts of over two years old. This opens the door for scammers, who may claim they are the IRS and ask for a phone or money transfer via phone or email. It is important to distinguish between the actual IRS and scam artists. People acting as tax preparers who charge absorbent.

Bankruptcy News

Bankruptcy Attorney Explains Chapter 13 for Maryland and Washington DC The United States Supreme Court is reviewing two Bank of America appeals. The bank is hoping that they can convince the court to overturn two rulings, Bank of America v. Caulkett and Bank of America v. Toledo-Cardona, which allow stripping of a lien. In both cases, Bank of.


3, 4, 5, 7 & 10 Year Closed Term Mortgages #loan #rate


#fixed mortgage

#

3, 4, 5, 7 & 10 Year Closed Term Mortgages

Right for you if:

  • You’re comfortable with where rates are now
  • You don’t want to constantly monitor your rates
  • Fixed interest rate Get the security of knowing what your rate and payments will be over the long term.
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Citigroup Settles Mortgage Inquiry for $7 Billion #cornerstone #mortgage


#citifinancial mortgage

#

The New York Times

Citigroup Settles Mortgage Inquiry for $7 Billion

By MICHAEL CORKERY

July 14, 2014

Updated, 8:29 p.m. | The $7 billion deal that Citigroup agreed to strike with the Justice Department involves one of the largest cash penalties ever paid to settle a federal inquiry into a bank suspected of mortgage misdeeds.

But another major component of the settlement has little to do with troubled mortgages. As part of the deal, Citigroup has also agreed to provide $180 million in financing to build affordable rental housing.

The unusual arrangement, which was outlined in the deal on Monday, underscores how difficult it remains for Citigroup to shed its rocky past and how federal prosecutors are getting creative in holding the nation’s big banks accountable for losses that crippled the global financial system in 2008.

Like other settlements the federal government has signed with Wall Street, Citigroup’s deal also requires the bank to modify mortgages of struggling homeowners. But Citigroup’s mortgage business has shrunk appreciably since the financial crisis, and the bank doesn’t service enough troubled mortgages to satisfy the monetary settlement terms for homeowner relief. So the bank agreed to finance affordable rental housing in unspecified “high cost of living areas.”

Wall Street watchdog groups and housing advocates said the terms of the $7 billion settlement highlight how the federal government has fallen short in its effort to hold banks accountable, noting that neither Citigroup nor any of its executives have been criminally charged for the bank’s mortgage problems.

In announcing the deal on Monday, Attorney General Eric H. Holder Jr. said the hard-fought settlement did not absolve the bank or its employees from facing criminal charges. “The bank’s misconduct was egregious,” he said. “As a result of their assurances that toxic financial products were sound, Citigroup was able to expand its market share and increase profits.”

The Justice Department said Citigroup routinely ignored warnings that a significant portion of the mortgages it was packaging and selling to investors in 2006 and 2007 had underwriting defects. In one internal email cited by prosecutors. a Citigroup trader wrote “went thru Diligence Reports and think that we should start praying … I would not be surprised if half of these loans went down.” But the bank securitized the loans anyway.

The Justice Department said it was this type of evidence that enabled prosecutors to extract a $4 billion cash penalty from Citigroup — the largest payment of its kind. That money will go into the United States Treasury ’s general fund and is not earmarked for any particular use.

The deal also includes $2.5 billion in so-called soft dollars designated for the financing of rental housing, mortgage modifications, down payment assistance and donations to legal aid groups, among other measures intended to provide relief to consumers.

The Federal Deposit Insurance Corporation ’s portion of the settlement — about $208 million — will reimburse creditors in three failed banks that owned large mortgage security portfolios — Citizens National Bank in Illinois, Strategic Capital Bank in Illinois and Colonial Bank in Alabama.

State attorneys general in California, Illinois, Massachusetts, New York and Delaware will receive a total of $291 million. California, for example, will reimburse its two largest public pension funds for mortgage-related losses they suffered during the financial crisis.

The payments to the states are tax-deductible, but the federal penalty is not.

In a boon for Citigroup, the deal with the Justice Department forgoes any potential cases against the bank related to collateralized debt obligations. or C.D.O.s, which were often tied to mortgages. While Citi was a relatively small player in the mortgage securities market, it was a leader on Wall Street in C.D.O.s.

As part of its rental housing commitment, Citigroup will provide financing to projects that may result in a loss to the bank. The Justice Department said the bank’s involvement would help fill a gap left by cities and states that cut funding for affordable housing because of the recession.

“We hope this measure will bring relief to families who were pushed into the rental market after losing their homes in the wake of the financial crisis,” said Tony West, the Justice Department’s lead negotiator with the bank. But for many borrowers who have already gone through foreclosures, the settlement comes too late, consumer advocates say.

“Seven billion sounds like a lot. But compared to the number of families that lost their homes, it is not very much at all,” said Isaac Simon Hodes, a community organizer with Lynn United for Change, a group that advocates on behalf of Boston-area residents facing foreclosure.

The bank must complete the consumer relief measures by the end of 2018.

In a call with reporters on Monday, Citigroup’s chief financial officer, John C. Gerspach, declined to say how much it would cost the bank to satisfy the consumer relief portions of the settlement. “These are hard-dollar costs,” Mr. Gerspach said.

Legal costs associated with the settlement dealt an immediate hit to Citigroup’s financial results. The bank took a $3.8 billion charge in the second quarter, leading profits to tumble 96 percent from a year ago.

Including the charge and one-time items, Citigroup earned $181 million, or 3 cents a share, compared with $4.18 billion, or $1.34 a share, in the second quarter of 2013.

Still, investors drove Citigroup’s shares up 3 percent on Monday, relieved that a settlement had been completed and heartened that the bank’s latest results were better than expected.

Excluding the mortgage settlement charge, Citigroup beat Wall Street’s analysts’ profit expectations, as its slumping trading revenue recovered slightly.

But much of that good news was overshadowed by the mortgage deal, which came after months of wrangling between prosecutors and the bank’s lawyers.

At the outset, the bank had expected to pay a fraction of that $7 billion. Citigroup’s first offer to settle the case was $363 million in April, revealing a wide disparity between what prosecutors and bank officials thought was an appropriate penalty.

That disparity stemmed largely from a disagreement over how to calculate the suspected harm that Citigroup’s mortgage securities caused investors. Citigroup linked its initial offer to the bank’s relatively small share of the market for mortgage securities, people briefed on the talks said. The Justice Department, however, rejected that argument, emphasizing instead what it saw as Citigroup’s level of culpability based on emails and other evidence it had uncovered.

The jockeying seemed to continue to the very end. In announcing the settlement, the Justice Department held a news conference in Washington at exactly the same time as bank executives discussed second-quarter results with Wall Street analysts.

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