Feds Look to States, Caroline Baum, Donovan on Sequestration, DQs Fall, QM Filter, Settlement in Jeopardy?, Jumbo Deal Delayed, IL Fast Track, Shorter Loan Terms, Obama SOTU, Ben Stay or Go?

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Feds Look to States for Refi Ideas – By Brian Collins and Mark Fogarty – WE’RE HEARING that an Oregon pilot program might be the model the Treasury Department has been looking for to refinance borrowers who are trapped in underwater private-label loans … Treasury recently approved an Oregon pilot program that will use HAMP funds and funds from the National Mortgage Settlement to buy and refinance underwater loans. The idea is based on a proposal by Sen. Jeff Merkley, D-Ore., … – National Mortgage News

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(housing mentioned) The Real Risk-Takers Are at the Federal Reserve – By Caroline Baum – Bloomberg 
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Donovan: Sequestration could devastate Fed housing programs – By Kerri Ann Panchuk –  Automatic government spending cuts could result in 75,000 fewer households receiving foreclosure-prevention aid along with rental and counseling services through the Department of Housing and Urban Development. – Housingwire

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Delinquency Rate Falls 14% from 2011, but Remains Elevated - BY: ESTHER CHO – … while more than 80 percent of metropolitan areas saw their rates decline, according to a TransUnion report. … – DS News
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CoreLogic: QM, QRM Rules Remove 60% of Loans and 90% of the Risk – BY: KRISTA FRANKS BROCK – … QM rules would eliminate about 48 percent of today’s mortgage originations, and when the QRM (with a 10 percent down payment requirement) is added to the equation, about 60 percent of today’s loans would be eliminated. … “The combined impact of QM and QRM is that only 25 percent of purchase originations would meet the eligibility requirements of the QM rule’s safe harbor,” according to CoreLogic. … – DS News

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(Barron’s Other Voices) The Great Mania - By MARTIN CONRAD – Reinflating the collapsed housing bubble, as many desire, would likely yield the same disastrous result. What’s needed are lower, fairer prices, and more investment in more productive sectors of the economy
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(letter sent to presiding judge) ($8.5b) Bank of America Settlement in Jeopardy? – BY ENZA G. BODERONE AND ROBERT SIEGEL – Mortgage Crisis Watch

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JPMorgan delays issue of jumbo RMBS - By Jacob Gaffney – … JPM worked on the deal for months, but had structural issues that are slowing the process. A spokesperson for JPM declined comment. However, a source close to the deal went so far as to declare the deal had “been shelved.” Others say the deal may be privately placed instead. … – Housingwire

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Illinois Allows Lenders to Fast-Track Foreclosures for Abandoned Homes – BY: KRISTA FRANKS BROCK – …  Illinois took a momentous step to shorten its foreclosure process last week. A new Illinois state law that allows servicers to fast-track the foreclosure process on certain properties has the potential to shorten a two-year process to between 90 and 180 days. The bill, which took almost as long to pass as Illinois former foreclosure process, received Illinois Governor Pat Quinn’s signature Friday. … – DS News 
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About 27% of refinancing borrowers choose shorter loan terms - By Christina Mlynski – About 27% of borrowers that refinanced an existing mortgage in the final quarter of 2012 chose to shorten their loan term, while 69% of borrowers kept the same term as the loan that they paid off, according to a report from Freddie Mac. Additionally, refinancing borrowers preferred fixed-rate loans, accounting for 95% of refi applicants. Fixed-rate loans were preferred regardless of what the original loan product was, the report said. – Housingwire 
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Obama discusses state of housing, urges refi bill passage – During his State of the Union Address, President Obama touted a home loan refinancing bill that’s currently sitting in Congress. – Housingwire 
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Bernanke’s Fed prospects? Many economists bet he’ll go – Paul Davidson, USA TODAY –  Two out of three in a USA TODAY survey predict the USA’s most famous economist will step down when his second four-year term ends next January. 
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