Earlier this month, Forbes published a great article on “protecting a business against partners’ credit woes”. The article eluded that, while commercial bankruptcies have decreased the past three years, they are still on pace in 2012 to eclipse pre-recession levels. In many cases, these bankruptcies are caused, or at least influenced, by poor credit decisions companies make regarding their customers, vendors and other business partners.
The Federal Reserve Bank of New York reported at the end of last month that U.S. households are reducing the amounts they owe on their homes. More specifically, during the second quarter of 2011 household debt fell by 0.5% to $11.38 trillion. The Federal Reserve Bank primarily attributed the drop to falling mortgage balances, including homeowners paying down home loans and completing foreclosure processes.
By now you may have heard that at the end of last month, the Federal Housing Finance Agency (FHFA) announced that Freddie Mac and Fannie Mae would not be lowering mortgage principals for struggling homeowners. The reason? An analysis completed by the FHFA concluded that principal reductions would not prevent foreclosures while saving taxpayers money. Some of their specific concerns and arguments against the “bailout” include: Read more…
Last month, on May 24th, the U.S. Supreme Court issued its ruling in the case Freeman et al. v. Quicken Loans, Inc. The final decision was that the defendant, Quicken Loans, did not violate Section 8(b) of the Real Estate Settlement and Procedures Act (RESPA) as alleged by the plaintiff in three separate instances. What gained notoriety for this case was that the Supreme Court followed the exact wording of the law, as written by Congress, which could have a significant impact on future mortgage brokerage practices.
In an article last week on SmartMoney.com, author Jack Hough made some surprising, almost inconceivable, predictions and observations regarding the U.S. housing market. His hypothesis is that housing prices will never recover to pre-recession levels.
According to the latest S&P/Case-Shriller reports, home prices in 20 major markets across the U.S. have declined 3.5% over the past 12 months (through February). That means prices are back to 2002 levels, and when inflation is factored into the equation, back to 1998 levels.
As you have likely heard by now, 49 of the 50 U.S.states recently reached agreement on a mortgage settlement which will pay $25 billion to borrowers and federal and state governments. The settlement will be paid by the nation’s five largest lenders: Ally/GMAC, Bank of America, Citi, JPMorgan Chase and Wells Fargo. Most of the payout ($20 billion) will be distributed to borrowers to help them avoid foreclosure, while the other $5 billion will be paid to the government. Read more…
Inman News recently released its second annual report on the “10 Real Estate Markets to Watch in 2012”. The report gives a glimmer of hope to the real estate industry by identifying ten markets that are showing signs of recovering quicker than others across the nation.
Inman News’ list was formulated based on several determining factors and metrics, including: