Ocwen, Hands Tied by N.Y., Turns to ‘Cleanup Calls’ for Profits

Ocwen Financial, operating under a settlement with New York’s banking regulator that restricts its servicing portfolio acquisitions, is looking at its old private-label mortgage securities as a new profit center.

Over the next two years, Ocwen plans to break up maturing securities where the remaining unpaid principal had fallen below 10% of its original unpaid principal balances. By exercising its cleanup call rights on the bonds, Ocwen can re-securitize the performing loans, work out the nonperformers and sell the repossessed homes.

“In these cases, we can call the bonds and re-securitize the performing loans almost immediately and recognize the gain,” Ocwen chief executive Ron Faris said during a conference call Dec. 22.

Read on.

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