Daily Archives: January 27, 2015

CFPB issues confidential supervisory information bulletin

The Consumer Financial Protection Bureau reminded supervised financial institutions, including nonbank companies that may be unfamiliar with federal supervision, of the existing regulatory requirements regarding confidential supervisory information (CSI) on Tuesday.

The bureau is tasked with supervising companies to determine their compliance with federal consumer financial laws, to assess risks to consumers and to help ensure a fair and transparent marketplace for consumers.

Under its authority, the CFPB oversees banks and credit unions with assets over $10 billion, and their affiliates, and is also the first federal agency with supervisory authority over certain nonbank financial companies, such as mortgage lenders and servicers, payday lenders, and private student lenders. They also oversee certain large debt collectors, consumer reporting agencies, student loan servicers and international remittance providers.

The CFPB issued a bulletin, found here, to provide guidance on what types of information constitute confidential supervisory information.

The bulletin gives the following examples of CSI:

  • CFPB examination reports and supervisory letters
  • All information contained in, derived from, or related to those documents, including an institution’s supervisory compliance rating
  • Communications between the CFPB and the supervised financial institution related to the CFPB’s examination of the institution or other supervisory activities
  • Other information created by the CFPB

Read on.

Public housing officials won’t verify whether residents are the truly needy

The Ticker

Public housing officials won’t verify whether residents are the truly needy

Housing authority not checking on residents

In a troubling report, it looks like some people taking advantage of public housing opportunities, may not be the people who need public housing.

Washington Examiner has the story.

Washington doesn’t know if people living in public housing are needy because local authorities who are supposed to verify income and stop fraud often aren’t interested making sure taxpayer money is spent properly.

Under pressure from lobbyists, HUD loosened regulations that had forced local authorities to collect evidence of income. Department officials also moved to let local authorities treat more federal cash as “fees” aimed at making a “profit” so that housing bureaucrats could be paid more, according to an investigation by HUD’s inspector general.

The policy of not bothering to make sure public housing is reserved for the poor began when President Obama appointed Sandra Henriquez as the HUD assistant secretary in charge of housing projects.

Click here for the full story.

Beleaguered Ocwen fights back against debt default charges

Amazing, the non-bank mortgage servicer who push many default or struggling homeowners into foreclosure are themselves in default with a hedge fund.

Ocwen Financial isn’t taking it anymore.

The beleaguered mortgage servicer, which saw its founding Chairman Bill Erbey resign earlier this month amid a bevy of regulatory probes, is pushing back against claims that an affiliate company is in default on its debt because of its legal troubles.

On Friday, hedge fund BlueMountain Capital sent a letter to Ocwen saying that the affiliate, Home Loan Servicing Solutions, had breached agreements on $925 million of debt because of its “illicit and imprudent practices.”

The creditor claimed the Ocwen affiliate was in technical default and demanded an additional 3 percent in annual interest payments.

Read on.

Foreclosed by Nationstar, elderly couple can return home ; Judge lets them back as case proceeds, but they say it’s been damaged

A little more than a month after a lender forced an elderly couple from their home, a judge ruled the two are allowed back in while the foreclosure case continues.

Jimmie Thompson and Carrie Bell Smith bought their home on West 35th Street in 1995. They paid off the mortgage and wanted to do work on it.

They got a reverse mortgage – a loan that the couple wouldn’t have to pay back until they died, moved away or violated the contract. After they died, the lender could access the home’s value.

Thompson and Smith never missed insurance payments, never missed tax payments, never missed utility payments. But the lender claimed the couple moved, nullifying the deal and prompting the foreclosure.

Thompson, Smith and their neighbors say that’s not true. Records show the couple’s utility bills never dipped significantly.

Still, Nationstar Mortgage foreclosed on the couple and forced them out of the house. The lender said it doesn’t comment on foreclosure lawsuits.

The couple’s story was told last month in The Florida Times- Union.

Read on.

Fannie Mae: Collateral Underwriter not disrupting appraisals

It’s here.

Lenders are eager to start using Fannie Mae’s Collateral Underwriter, while appraisers raise concerns over the negative impact it could cause their businesses.

Nonetheless, the system’s creator said no harm was intended with today’s release of CU.

“From an appraiser perspective, one of the lender’s responsibilities has always been to review the quality of an appraiser, and they have been using various methods to do that forever,” said Marianne Sullivan, senior vice president of single-family business capability with Fannie Mae.  “I don’t think appraisers will find this tool to be disruptive.”

Sullivan explained that once appraisers have a chance to see this in action and in the market, they will realize it is just another tool that is reviewing appraisers just as other processes have all along.

Read on.

Former J.P. Morgan Securities registered rep barred, two others suspended and fined for allegedly forging a customer’s signature on bank withdrawal slips

Department of Predictable Outcomes on the Justice League Blog says this is not a surprise by the actions of JP Morgan and other big banks since the banks are still Too Big To Comply, Too Big To Regulate, and Too Big to Manage. FINRA stands for Financial Industry Regulatory Authority which regulates for all securities firms.

FINRA ejected a former J.P. Morgan Securities registered rep from the industry this month for allegedly forging a customer’s signature on bank withdrawal slips, a move that allowed the customer’s sister to steal $3,900 from the customer’s account.

According to FINRA’s filing, Jamal Romero forged the bank customer’s signature on at least three occasions between February and April of 2012. As a result of the forgeries, the customer’s sister was able to misappropriate the money, FINRA said.

Romero was dismissed from J,P. Morgan Chase Bank, where he was employed as a personal banker, in September of 2013. According to BrokerCheck, Romero admitted to “allowing [an] unauthorized third party to be added to a bank customer’s account, which allowed the third party to make unauthorized withdrawals.”

Read on.

Why I fled Argentina after breaking the story of Alberto Nisman’s death

Writing for Haaretz.com:

In an exclusive column, Jewish journalist Damian Pachter – who first reported on the death of the special prosecutor – recounts the intimidation, the sleepless nights, the agent who stalked him and his ultimate decision to head for Israel.

When my source gave me the scoop on Alberto Nisman’s death, I was writing a piece on the special prosecutor’s accusations against President Cristina Fernández de Kirchner, her (Jewish) Foreign Minister Héctor Timerman, two pro-­Iran “social activists” and parliamentarian Andrés Larroque. I learned that Nisman had been shot dead in his home.

The vetting process wasn’t too tough because of my source’s incredible attention to detail. His name will never be revealed.

Two things stood in my mind: my source’s safety and people’s right to know what happened that day, though not necessarily in that order.

Of course, for both speed and the contagion effect, Twitter was the way to go. The information was so solid I never doubted my source, despite my one or two colleagues who doubted me because I only had 420 Twitter followers — a number now eclipsing 10,000.

As the night went on, journalists contacted me in order to get the news from me even more directly. The first to do so was Gabriel Bracesco.

Once I tweeted that Nisman had died, hundreds of people quickly retweeted the news and started following me. That was my first of many sleepless days.

“You just broke the best story in decades,” lots of people said. “You’re crazy,” was another take. Either way, nobody questioned that the situation was very grave.

The following days were marked by a government trying to create an official story. First, the head of state suggested a “suicide hypothesis,” then a mysterious murder. They of course were not to blame. In anything.

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