LenderNews by Rob Chrisman
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Aug. 25: National sales & LO jobs, broker products; Blend’s capital raise; CFPB’s HMDA changes; LIBOR sub proposal

August 25, 2017

My boss arrived at work in a brand-new Lamborghini. I said, "Wow, that’s an amazing car!” He replied, "If you work hard, put all your hours in, and strive for excellence, I’ll get another one next year." Seventy-eight percent of full-time workers said they live paycheck to paycheck, up from 75 percent last year, according to a report from CareerBuilder which also noted that 71% of all U.S. workers said they’re now in debt. CareerBuilder better get crackin’ building careers…
 
Employment, products, personnel moves
 
PrimeLending is growing ‘wicked fast’ in New England. We’re opening new branches in the region, each headed by a veteran leader with a proven track record of building successful teams and growing production volume. For instance, Christene Comolli brings more than 27 years of mortgage industry experience to her role as branch manager for the Providence, RI location. Branch manager of the Bedford, NH location, Nate Keener, has over 15 years of mortgage banking experience in the Merrimack Valley area. Currently, Providence and Bedford represent $4.1 billion and $1.5 billion purchase markets respectively, each with high demand for govie and renovation loan products. PrimeLending is a perfect fit given the company’s pro-purchase originating mix – 83% in 2017 – and rich catalog of 400+ products, including FHA, VA and USDA loans, and 18 renovation programs. If you’re a top tier producer working in a hot market anywhere in the USA and you’re ready to make a big move, contact Bill Harp (469.737.5767).”
 
Pacific Union Financial, LLC continues to grow its Western Division with a new Distributed Retail branch in Denver, Colorado. Industry veteran Sheniqua Smith joins as Branch Manager of the new location, ready to serve potential homebuyers seeking mortgage solutions as well as those interested in refinancing. “We are extremely excited about the addition of Ms. Smith to the Pacific Union Financial team,” said Regional VP Christopher Jensen. “Sheniqua has worked in the Denver market since 2002 and will be a tremendous asset as we continue our growth and expansion efforts in Colorado.” If you are a loan officer in the Denver area and looking to grow your career with a successful company that offers first-rate tools and support, contact Christopher Jensen and learn more about Pacific Union.
 
You spend your time, talent, and expertise getting loan applications and taking care of your borrower. You’ve earned their trust. What you need now is a company that will back you up; a company who understands what it takes to get where you are now. A company that knows how to get loans closed on time. That’s Assurance Financial, a full-service mortgage lender. We’re growing, and we’re looking for the best and brightest to grow with us. We hire the best, and we compensate well. If that’s you, call Sales Recruiting Manager Paul Peters, CMB at 225-239-7948 or visit LendTheWay.com/Careers. It’s just a phone call, but Assurance Financial could change the way you think about your career.
 
The Loan Vision team has announced that its customer Success Mortgage Partners has seen increasing efficiency of its accounting processes since implementing Loan Vision at the end of last year. “Success Mortgage’s decision to seek out a better accounting software instead of adding additional members to their accounting team really caught the inefficiency by its source, which was a serious lack of accounting functionality needed to get the job done,” said Martin Kerr, President of Bestborn Business Solutions. “Loan-level functionality is absolutely crucial to perform the level of detailed data analysis needed to manage branch networks in the most efficient way.” Loan Vision offers enterprise level accounting and business management functionality in one industry focused solution. For more information contact Carl Wooloff.
 
Carrington Mortgage Services, Wholesale Lending Division, effective immediately has lowered the minimum credit score on FHA/VA loans to 500. Plus, Massive Pricing improvements and LLPA reductions from Carrington that closes the tough loans for your clients. First 25 bps LLPA on FHA/VA High Balance Loans Credit Scores < 640. Additional Significant LLPA reductions on FHA Loans < $150K. VA Full Doc and HUGE IRRRL reductions you need to see. Additionally, Carrington is removing Soft Credit pulls at closing. Contact a Carrington Account Executive to learn more about our 500 minimum credit score on FHA/VA loans or visit CarringtonWholesale for our rates and to become an approved  broker.  Carrington Closes Loans Others Can’t, they tackle the tough loans.
 
SocialSurvey is looking for a National Head of Sales.  This person will be responsible to build a multi-tier sales organization within the mortgage vertical for our rapid growth SAAS company.  Offering highly competitive salary, bonus and equity plan to the right person.  You must have relevant experience building a sales organization in either SAAS or the Mortgage industry.  Please email Scott Harris.
 
Hamilton Group Funding announces the retirement of industry veteran Mark Korell as President and CEO, effective Dec. 31. The following day he will become Chairman of the Board. Hamilton also announced that Patrick Sheehy will succeed Mr. Korell as its President and CEO. Mr. Sheehy currently serves on Hamilton’s Advisory Board. (Hamilton is a rapidly growing Florida-based private home lending business that has successfully expanded its foot print to thirty-six branch locations in twenty-four licensed states.)
 
loanDepot announced the appointment of industry veteran Drew Collins as SVP, Pacific Division manager. Reporting to Dan Hanson, loanDepot’s chief retail production officer, Collins will be responsible for retail production in CA, NV, OR, WA, ID, WY, and MT. Collins will be responsible for managing the sales process, recruitment, and loanDepot’s “go-to-market” process featuring mello™, the company’s proprietary digital ecosystem.
 
Company news
 
Heard from American Pacific Mortgage who wanted to share this with industry friends and partners: “In August 2015, American Pacific Mortgage was a victim of an elaborate scheme which involved an email hacker posing as the CEO and duping an unsuspecting employee. It is important to point out, at no time were our systems infiltrated or confidential data breached. While the event was significant enough to file an insurance claim, the amount in no way impacted the company’s operations, employees or the consumers we serve. Because this occurred two years ago and we are nearing the end of the Statute of Limitations, we recently filed a claim against our insurance company for breach of contract. 
 
“While we are not at liberty to speak about the specifics of the event, we feel it is our responsibility and welcome the opportunity to share our experience with others in the industry and make them aware of both the threat and the potential gaps in their insurance. Since this unfortunate event, APM has invested significantly in fortifying our systems and protecting our company.  We consider our company the safest independent mortgage bank in the industry.”
 
San Francisco-based Blend (“simplifying the process of mortgage applications for both borrowers and lenders”) has raised $100 million in new funding led by Greylock, with participation from a bunch of existing investors. “Blend builds technology used by multiple big banks to help collect and evaluate information in their mortgage underwriting processes.”
 
CFPB & legal update
 
The CFPB has issued a proposal to temporarily increase the threshold for collecting and reporting data with respect to open-end lines of credit so that financial institutions originating fewer than 500 open-end lines of credit in either of the preceding two years would not be required to begin collecting such data until January 1, 2020. The public comment period has closed, but you can access the proposal on the Bureau’s website.
 
Of course, anyone can sue anyone else at any time. But here’s a suit gaining some attention: a sexual harassment claim leveled against lender SoFi picked up by Fortune.
 
But the big news came yesterday with the CFPB’s 225-page “Final Rule” clarifying, updating, and amending certain requirements to help companies comply with the upcoming HMDA reporting changes, and temporarily changes mortgage data rule reporting threshold for community banks and credit unions.
 
“Under rules that are scheduled to take effect in January 2018, financial institutions would have been required under the Home Mortgage Disclosure Act to report home-equity lines of credit if they made 100 such loans in each of the last two years. The CFPB has increased that threshold to 500 loans through calendar years 2018 and 2019 so that the Bureau can consider whether to make a permanent adjustment. This change was initially proposed in July 2017, and the CFPB will take another gander at it in 2020.
We’re presented with a number of clarifications, technical corrections, and minor changes to the HMDA regulation. These include clarifying certain key terms, such as "temporary financing" and "automated underwriting system." The changes finalized today will also, for example, establish transition rules for reporting certain loans purchased by financial institutions. Another change will facilitate reporting the census tract of a property, using a geocoding tool that will be provided on the Bureau’s website. 
There’s been a lot of jabbering about the CFPB Director Richard Cordray heading off the run for Governor in Ohio. Andrew L. Sandler, Chairman and Executive Partner of Buckley Sandler, laid out an alternative to following Dodd-Frank’s guidelines of succession since the Federal Vacancies Reform Act of 1998 (“FVRA”), which provides a defined process when the head of an Executive agency resigns, would allow the President to bypass the Deputy Director. While it is not clear whether Dodd-Frank or FVRA controls in these circumstances, there will be significant differences in the operation of the CFPB, depending on which statute prevails.
 
Mr. Sandler explains, “If the FVRA controls succession following the resignation of Director Cordray, President Trump could direct a current senior CFPB employee other than Acting Deputy Director to serve as the Acting Director, although it seems doubtful that the President would find someone to his liking within the Agency. Alternatively, and more likely, the President could direct an officer of another agency who has already been approved by the Senate to serve as the Acting Director.” Mr. Sandler further indicates that given the CFPB’s docket of enforcement matters and its determined efforts to complete its rulemaking agenda, “The outcome of this question of succession will have significant consequences for the financial services industry and the consumers it serves.”
 
Capital markets
 
For anyone worrying about LIBOR, and why wouldn’t you be with $350 trillion worth of financial products tied to it but nearly four years to make a change, the U.S. Federal Reserve is requesting public comments in the next 60 days on a plan for the New York Fed and the Office of Financial Research to come up with three reference rates based on U.S. Treasuries-backed repurchase agreements (repos). "Because these rates are based on transactions secured by U.S. Treasury securities, they are essentially risk-free, providing a valuable benchmark for market participants to use in financial transactions," the Fed said in a statement.
 
For anyone who likes acronyms, the most comprehensive of the three repo rates is the one selected by the ARRC, to be called the Secured Overnight Financing Rate (SOFR). It would include tri-party repo data from the Bank of New York Mellon, and cleared bilateral and GCF repo data from the Depository Trust & Clearing Corp. (DTCC). Another rate is the Tri-party General Collateral Rate (TGCR), which would be based only on tri-party repo data from the Bank of New York Mellon. The third rate, to be called the Broad General Collateral Rate (BGCR), would be based on tri-party repo data from Bank of New York Mellon and cleared GCF repo data from DTCC.
 
In terms of the here and now bond market, it sure is quiet out there. Yesterday we had initial jobless claims and existing home sales – neither of which moved the bond markets much but with a downward bias. In fact, at the end of Thursday the 10-yr yield is unchanged for the week while the 30-yr yield is down just a basis point—after rounding. The 5-yr yield is up almost two basis points since last Friday’s close.
 
This morning we’ve had the July Durable Goods number (-6.8%, ex-transportation +.5%). It was up pretty good in June, so most were forecasting a drop back to normal levels. The 10-year note closed Thursday yielding 2.19% and we find it at 2.20% with agency MBS prices nearly unchanged versus last night’s close.
 
 
The Board of a large steel company, feeling it was time for a shakeup, hired a new CEO. The new boss was determined to rid the company of all slackers.
On a tour of the facilities, the CEO noticed a guy leaning against a wall. The room was full of workers and he wanted to let them know that he meant business. He asked the guy, "How much money do you make a week?"
A little surprised, the young man looked at him and said, "I make $400 a week. Why?"
The CEO said, "Wait right here." He walked back to his office, came back in two minutes, and handed the guy $1,600 in cash and said, "Here’s four weeks’ pay. Now GET OUT and don’t come back."
Feeling pretty good about himself the CEO looked around the room and asked, "Does anyone want to tell me what that goof-ball did here?"
From across the room a voice said: "He was a pizza delivery guy from Domino’s."
 
 
Visit www.robchrisman.com for more information on our industry partners, access archived commentaries, or to subscribe to the Daily Mortgage News and Commentary. If you’re interested, visit my periodic blog at the STRATMOR Group web site. The current blog is, “Does Everyone Want a Job?” If you have both the time and inclination, make a comment on what I have written, or on other comments so that folks can learn what’s going on out there from the other readers.
Rob
 
(Market data provided in partnership with MBS Live. For free job postings and to view candidate resumes visit LenderNews. Currently there are over 300 mortgage professionals looking for operations, secondary and management roles. For up-to-date mortgage news visit Mortgage News Daily. For archived commentaries, or to subscribe, go to www.robchrisman.com. Copyright 2017 Chrisman LLC. All rights reserved. Occasional paid job listings do appear. This report or any portion hereof may not be reprinted, sold or redistributed without the written consent of Rob Chrisman.)