LenderNews by Rob Chrisman
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May 9: Ops & IT jobs, & price changes; Lending Club CEO resigns; upcoming webinars & training; USDA rural developments; mortgage credit less available

May 9, 2016

At a car dealership: "The best way to get back on your feet – miss a car payment.” Some believe that the CFPB has shifted its spotlight, temporarily, onto pay day, auto lending, and deferred interest credit card payments. But that doesn’t mean residential lending won’t see its share of attention. Of note last week was the CFPB proposing a rule that would allow consumers to go around arbitration clauses on loans and other contracts to pursue class action lawsuits. We can all expect banks to address the increased risk this change will bring to existing business lines by seeking ways to raise prices around impacted products such as credit cards, auto loans and other loans. And mortgages. And someone can let me know how this helps extend credit to deserving borrowers.
 
Carrington Wholesale Lending is spreading spread the word to its broker clients that it has removed its LLPAs (Loan Level Price Adjustments) for FHA Streamline loans with credit scores below 640. So what was essentially an add-on to rate has been removed for FHA streamline loans below a 640 credit score. “In addition, don’t forget that Carrington has added Conventional Loan Products for its broker partners to further extend Carrington’s ability to better meet its broker’s needs and assist in building their business. For more information, visit Carrington Wholesale Lending. (For employment opportunities contact Carlos Fernandez at 949-517-7204.)
 
With the planned opening of its Dallas-Fort Worth site, along with continued growth and demand for its risk mitigation and compliance services, Mortgage Quality Management & Research, LLC (MQMR) is looking to fill multiple positions. Current open positions include one Servicing QC Auditor, two Vendor Management Analysts, an Internal Auditor, and an Operations Due Diligence Examiner to review mortgage companies on behalf of warehouse banks (all positions to be based in Los Angeles, CA or Dallas, TX; except Due Diligence Examiner can be located in Dallas, TX or remote on the East Coast). If you are looking to join a growing company where you can make an impact and be part of a great team and culture, reach out to Tim Cox.  
 
Rushmore Home Loans, a division of Rushmore Loan Management Services is a rapidly growing Consumer Direct mortgage banker in Dallas, TX, and is looking to hire an IT director for the channel. This candidate should have experience in the implementation of Ellie Mae Encompass. Call center technologies including lead management and telephony background is a plus. The role will start out directly managing a small, nimble team and will be given the opportunity to succeed and be part of a dynamic management team for this channel. Rushmore is rapidly growing, acquiring servicing and wants a best in class retention center. The company has deep capital, and all Agency approvals, including Fannie, Freddie and Ginnie Mae. Interested parties can send confidential resumes to me at recruiting@rushmorelm.com.
 
In personnel news Impac Mortgage Corp. Wholesale announced that Brendan Pawloski has joined the team as a Senior Account Executive. He brings close to 2 decades of experience within the mortgage industry in all aspects of wholesale lending. Brendan’s primary territory will be California. He’ll report to another new member of the Wholesale team, Regional Manager Marcus Rodriquez. Working within the financial services industry since 1983, Marcus has a strong emphasis on service and best practices. Impac welcomes them both.
 
On the flip side Goldman Sachs Group cut about 100 jobs last week to reduce costs after a 40% year-over-year drop in first-quarter revenue. Goldman’s fixed-income group has lost 10% of its workforce, up from a typical 5% cut to allow hiring.
 
Not only is there a major capital markets MBA conference next week in Manhattan, but there are plenty of other events coming up tailored more for production folks.
 
Want to know what MLO’s are actually thinking about their current employer and prospects for success? Join a free webinar hosted by Sue Woodard of Vantage Productions with Drew Waterhouse and Steve Rennie (Wed, May 11, 10-11 AM PDT) to hear the results of Hammerhouse 6th Annual Originator Opinion Survey, plus get a full copy of the survey for yourself and information that can help you better prepare to recruit and retain talent based on what is on their mind. Click here to register for: Recruiting Top Producers and Leaders in Today’s Market. Seats are limited: http://bit.ly/24nfwcM. And find out which survey respondent won the iPad raffle!
 
Stop by Fannie Mae’s open house in the Manhattan Ballroom (8th floor lobby) at MBA’s National Secondary Market Conference & Expo 2016 in New York. On May 16-17 Fannie Mae experts will be on hand to answer questions.
 
MBA Education is offering Commercial/Multi-Family Insurance webinars. Get guidance managing your risk with 3 different topics to choose from.
 
Don’t miss out on the HUD 184 Training this week on the 13th in Oklahoma City featuring Deanna Lucero, HUD 184 Senior Loan Guarantee Specialist and Michelle K. Tinnin, Native American Program Specialist. This training is sponsored by NAPMW OKC.
 
If you’re in New Mexico next week NMMLA’s May 12th luncheon welcomes guest speaker Susanne Kennedy. Registration is available now.
 
What is SWOT? Join Plaza for a webinar on May 9th to discover all aspects of SWOT (Strength, Weakness, Opportunity, Threat) designed for Loan officers to learn how to effectively deal with competition.
 
Join Experian for an overview of the latest consumer credit trends on Wednesday, May 25th. Register here.
 
Keefe, Bruyette and Woods (KBW), announced its Mortgage Finance Conference will be held on Wednesday, June 1 in New York City. KBW brings companies and investors together at many financial sector and subsector conferences held throughout the year. These conferences take place around the world and focus on banks, insurance, and diversified financials (including mortgage finance, asset management, exchanges, payments, and specialty finance, to name a few). For more information, contact your KBW Sales Representative or email us at kbwsales@kbw.com. Click here to view the conference agenda.
 
“But they’ll laugh at you in Jackson, and I’ll be dancin’ on a Pony Keg.
They’ll lead you ’round town like a scalded hound,
With your tail tucked between your legs,
Yeah, go to Jackson, you big-talkin’ man.
And I’ll be waitin’ in Jackson, behind my Japan Fan…”
 
Lenders in Mississippi know a thing or two about rural lending. USDA Rural Development has announced that the maximum mortgage limits for the Direct Home ownership loan program in Nebraska have increased effective May 4. This article has some links to the program that are useful.
 
AmeriHome’s USDA program guide has been extensively updated to highlight changes that became effective on March 9, 2016, with publication of the USDA “final rule.” Its program guide additions are notated as New and details are provided in blue font throughout the program guide. AmeriHome is implementing no new USDA overlays with these changes.
 
Effective with locks starting April 25th Franklin American has updated its USDA price adjustments. The changes are reflected on rate sheet’s and the online pricing engine.
 
Pacific Union Financial posted government product updates. Clarifications and update include FHA HUD Form 92561, Borrower’s Contract with Respect to Hotel and Transient Use of Property, VA IRRRL AVM Valuation Option, VA Tax Lien Repayment and USDA annual income calculations.
 
Plaza Home Mortgage posted guideline updates for VA Fixed and Arm, FHA Fixed, ARM, FHA 203K and USDA. These updates are effective Tuesday, May 3rd.  Plaza’s Government and LPMI LLPAs have also been updated effective for all new locks as of May 3rd.
 
Ditech’s Conforming, FHA, VA, USDA and Jumbo underwriting guidelines are being updated. The Client Guide and product matrices must be referred to for complete guideline requirements.
 
Returning to headline company news, is Lending Club on the ropes? I don’t know, and it is not a big home loan player, but things aren’t looking great for the company. Known as the world’s largest online marketplace connecting borrowers and investors, it reported earnings today: solid growth in originations, operating revenue, and adjusted EBITDA, notwithstanding a difficult operating environment. Operating revenue in the first quarter of 2016 was $151.3 million, an increase of 87% year-over-year. Adjusted EBITDA (Earnings before interest, taxes, depreciation and amortization) was $25.2 million in the first quarter of 2016, an increase of 137% year-over-year. But it will be entering the future without its CEO: Renaud Laplanche resigned as Chairman and CEO. His resignation followed an internal review of sales of $22 million in near-prime loans to a single investor, in contravention of the investor’s express instructions as to a non-credit and non-pricing element, in March and April 2016.
 
Lending Club and other lenders will say their mission is to extend credit to deserving borrowers in an efficient manner. (In fact its website states, “We’re transforming the banking system to make credit more affordable and investing more rewarding. We operate at a lower cost than traditional bank lending programs and pass the savings on to borrowers in the form of lower rates and to investors in the form of solid returns.”) Many think that “the bloom is off the rose” for that segment of the industry.
 
On the home financing side of things, however, mortgage credit availability decreased in April according to the Mortgage Credit Availability Index (MCAI), a report from the MBA which analyzes data from Ellie Mae’s AllRegs Market Clarity business information tool.
 
The MCAI decreased 0.89 percent to 122.4 in April. A decline in the MCAI indicates that lending standards are tightening, while increases in the index are indicative of loosening credit. The index was benchmarked to 100 in March 2012. Of the four component indices, the Jumbo MCAI saw the greatest tightening (-1.4%) over the month while the Conforming MCAI saw the most loosening (+.1%). The Conventional MCAI decreased 1.0 percent, while the Government MCAI decreased 0.7 percent over the month.
 
Mortgage credit became less available in April as a result of two opposing trends, resulting in a net decrease to the index,” said Lynn Fisher, noted MBA VP of Research and Economics. “Investors continued to roll out Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac’s low down payment loan programs, which had a loosening effect on credit availability. However, this was more than offset by tightening among high balance and jumbo loan programs.”
 
The Conventional, Government, Conforming, and Jumbo MCAIs are designed to show relative credit risk/availability for their respective index. The primary difference between the total MCAI and the Component Indices are the population of loan programs which they examine. The Government MCAI examines FHA/VA/USDA loan programs, while the Conventional MCAI examines non-government loan programs. Similarly, the Jumbo MCAI examines everything flagged as “Jumbo” while the Conforming MCAI examines loan programs that fall under conforming loan limits. The MCAI is calculated using several factors related to borrower eligibility (credit score, loan type, loan-to-value ratio, etc.).
 
Rates? Up some, down some. Certainly LOs are more focused on helping their clients rather than guessing the direction of rates. But on Friday U.S. Treasuries took losses as the weaker-than-expected April jobs report was unable to support the run-up in prices that occurred over the past seven trading sessions. While the Department of Labor reported that the U.S. economy added 47K fewer jobs in April than the Briefing.com consensus estimate of 207K, that miss (and the prior two months’ downward revisions) still indicates a robust pace of job creation.
 
Turning to scheduled news this week in the United States, things are pretty quiet, so volatility may not be a concern. There is zip today; tomorrow are a couple minor things: March JOLTS for job openings, and a $24 billion 3-year Treasury auction. Wednesday we have the MBA Mortgage Index and a $23 billion 10-year Treasury auction. Thursday we’ll see Initial Jobless Claims, April Import Prices ex-oil and Export Prices ex-ag., and a $15 billion 30-year Treasury auction. Friday includes April PPI and Core PPI & April Retail Sales and Retail Sales, along with a speech by San Francisco Fed President Williams in Sacramento that I am privileged to be attending.
 
No one is complaining about rates – they continue to be darned low. In fact, the yield on the 10-year Friday was 1.78%. This morning the yield on the 10-year is sitting around unchanged with agency MBS prices also unchanged – maybe better slightly depending on the coupon.
 
 
A redhead bought two horses and could never remember which was which.
A neighbor suggested that she cut off the tail of one horse, which worked great until the other horse got his tail caught in a bush. The second horse’s tail tore in the same place and looked exactly like the other horse’s tail.
Our redhead friend was stuck again.
The neighbor then suggested that she notch the ear of one horse, which worked fine until the other horse caught his ear on a barbed wire fence. Once again, our redhead friend couldn’t tell the two horses apart.
The neighbor then suggested that she measure the horses for height.
When she did that, the redhead was very pleased to find that the white horse was 2 inches taller than the black one.
 
 
If you’re interested, visit my twice-a-month blog at the STRATMOR Group web site. The current blog is, “The Fed’s QE: Help or Hindrance to Lending?” 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 2016 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.)