Nov. 30: TPO, retail, compliance, & mgt. jobs; Quicken exec lands transition job; CFPB appraisal news; non-agency MBS update

Rob Chrisman

Rob Chrisman began his career in mortgage banking – primarily capital markets – 31 years ago in 1985 with First California Mortgage, assisting in Secondary Marketing until 1988, when he joined Tuttle & Co., a leading mortgage pipeline risk management firm. He was an account manager and partner at Tuttle & Co. until 1996, when he moved to Scotland with his family for 9 months. Read more...

Underwriters’ hands are tied in using income from something the Federal Government considers illegal. For example, Washington State had nearly $212 million in marijuana sales in the second quarter of 2016, approaching the $249 million sold in alcoholic spirits. Some argue that someone in the weed business with an 800 FICO is a better credit risk than someone in any occupation with a 580 FICO score for a taxpayer-supported mortgage program like FHA.

 

In job news, Union Home Mortgage, a privately-held nationally recognized leading mortgage banker, is currently seeking a Senior Compliance Specialist who is looking to be a valuable and productive member of an already top performing Compliance team and be integral in advancing the compliance management program. Responsibilities include drafting self-assessment procedures, performing testing and summarizing findings, collaborating with Partners to develop corrective action plans, updating and/or create compliance policies and procedures; enhance compliance training program. This person will also be able to mentor junior compliance personnel. The candidate must have experience with Regulations X and Z, as well as other Federal regulations impacting mortgage lending, and can work from home or any local branch office. For a confidential discussion, send resumes to Lucas Engle.

 

In third party origination job news, “One of America’s leading mortgage lenders has some of this winter’s hottest openings. We’re currently seeking talented candidates for TPO Account Executive positions in Texas, Louisiana, New Mexico, Washington/Oregon, Arizona, Kentucky, Michigan, Indiana, Maryland, Virginia, South Carolina, Mississippi, Alabama and the New England states with the unique opportunity to sell products in all three TPO channels: broker, non-delegated and correspondent (including bulk mandatory). Experienced leaders in the Los Angeles area can apply for an available Regional Manager position, overseeing all three channels in our Western Region. We’re committed to making the dream of homeownership a reality – and providing our associates with the resources they need to succeed. Make ’17 your best year yet!” Please submit confidential resumes to me and specify opportunity.

 

Primary Capital Mortgage recently added two new executives to its leadership team: Liane Taylor, SVP Human Resources, and Spencer Mosness, Chief Legal Counsel. Liane Taylor comes from TriStar Services, where she spent the past six years as VP of Human Resources, and Spencer Mosness formerly served as Premier Home Mortgage Inc.’s first attorney and General Counsel. “Liane and Spencer have guided companies through times of accelerated growth and offer firsthand knowledge of what it takes to grow strategically and successfully,” said Primary Capital CEO Anthony Coniglio. “As we set our sights on some very significant and important goals over the next three years, I know they will both be incredible assets to our management team.” In addition to these new executives, Primary Capital has hired more than a dozen new employees over the past quarter and plans to continue hiring aggressively heading into 2017. To view current job openings or to learn more about Primary Capital’s growth, please visit http://www.primarycapital.com.

 

Provident Bank is excited to welcome Scott Ritter as the SVP – Head of Mortgage Banking. “Scott has a proven track record helping grow companies on a national scale to nearly $40 billion per year in production with deep knowledge of all aspects of mortgage banking. As we continue to grow under new leadership we are looking to expand both our Wholesale and Retail divisions. In Retail, we have a unique opportunity for a Retail Regional Production Manager.  The individual will be responsible for managing retail production for 11 branches in Northern and Southern California. The ideal candidate will 10+ years of management experience and will provide support to branch managers helping them attain goals, recruit and build branches, and be knowledgeable of bank regulatory policies and procedures.” If you have any interest and would like to know more about this or other positions, please contact Amy Fishel at 951-782-6184. (Provident Bank is an equal opportunity employer. It is the bank’s policy to grant equal employment opportunity (EEO) to all qualified persons without regard to race, sex, religion, age, national origin, physical or mental disability, or veteran’s status. The bank provides equal opportunities in employment, promotion, wages, benefits, and all other privileges, terms, and conditions of employment. It is our policy to make reasonable accommodations for the disabled, concentrating on the person’s abilities and not disabilities. This policy has the support of the highest levels of management. Provident Bank is an “at will” employer.)

 

Congrats to Quicken Loan’s Shawn Krause who President-elect Donald Trump named to the team overseeing the transition at the Department of Housing and Urban Development. Ms. Krause is the EVP of government advocacy for Quicken and was registered to lobby for Quicken since 2009. She “deregistered” as a lobbyist in the last few weeks.

 

I love it when the press sneers at making money. One financial reporter wrote, “Steven Mnuchin, the frontrunner for Treasury secretary in the Trump administration, made millions turning around a lender that collapsed after the subprime mortgage frenzy…” What’s bad, making millions? Turning around a company? Being involved, even remotely, in the industry after “the subprime frenzy?”

 

Plenty of people expect the regulatory environment to change under the new Administration. Plenty of experienced lenders, however, know that a certain amount of regulation was, and is, called for – the trick is in creating make-sense rules and appropriately enforcing them. And at the center of this is the Consumer Finance Protection Bureau, having garnered plenty of legal attention with the recent PHH vs. CFPB case.

 

The D.C. Circuit has entered an order directing PHH Corporation to file a response to the CFPB’s petition for rehearing en banc in CFPB v. PHH Corporation. The order, filed November 23, requires PHH to file its response within 15 days. It also invites the Solicitor General to file a response to the petition for rehearing en banc, expressing the views of the United States, but does not set a date by which the Solicitor General must file any response.  One can expect the Solicitor General to support the CFPB’s petition and given the impending change in Administrations, to file a response promptly. The order states that absent further order of the court, the court will not accept a reply to the responses.

 

Put another way, the full D.C. Circuit ordered PHH to respond to the CFPB’s petition for en banc review of the October 2016 three-judge panel decision in PHH Corp. v. CFPB. The CFPB’s November 18 petition challenged, among other things, the conclusion by the majority of the panel that the CFPB’s structure was unconstitutional and that, to remedy this defect, the Director must be removable at will by the President. PHH’s response, which is due by December 8, would not have been permitted without the court’s order. Similarly, the CFPB is not permitted to file a reply unless ordered by the court. Importantly, the en banc court also “invited” the U.S. Solicitor General “to file a response to the petition” to “express the views of the United States.” The Dodd-Frank Act does not allow the CFPB to petition the Supreme Court for review without the approval of the Attorney General (12 USC § 5564(e)).

 

Obviously the CFPB is not without its fans. Americans for Financial Reform (AFR), the Center for Responsible Lending (CRL), and other civil rights and consumer advocacy organizations, as well as 21 members of Congress submitted amicus briefs to the U.S. Court of Appeals for the District of Columbia Circuit in the case of PHH Corporation v. CFPB, in support of the CFPB. The groups and members of Congress urged the full court to grant the CFPB’s petition for a rehearing of a 2-1 panel decision last month, which they believe incorrectly ruled that the President may remove the CFPB Director without cause. They also underscored the need to maintain a strong and independent CFPB, as Congress intended, free from political and outside industry influence. “By invalidating the CFPB director’s for-cause removal protection, the panel decision topples Congress’s design for this critical new agency and imperils its ability to function as intended. Worse still, the panel’s one-hundred-page opinion reaches this result without even once addressing why Congress took such care to structure the CFPB as it did or how the CFPB’s design is so critical to its proper functioning…This structure allows the Bureau to make decisions that protect consumers—even when those decisions are opposed by intense lobbying,’ wrote AFR and CRL. ‘Since the CFPB began operating in July 2011, it has proven to be highly effective in identifying violations of consumer protection law and remedying the problems with precision and agility. The CFPB’s effectiveness, and its ability to respond to unlawful practices quickly, is attributable in part to its leadership by a single director and its insulation from political influence and industry capture.’”

 

The CFPB is not sitting on its hands by any stretch of the imagination, and is expected to speed up any changes ahead of the new Administration. It, the Federal Reserve Board, and the Office of the Comptroller of the Currency (OCC) have issued a final rule regarding future adjustments to the threshold for appraisal exceptions for higher-priced mortgage loans. Remember that Dodd-Frank amended the Truth in Lending Act, adding a requirement that lenders get a written appraisal based on an interior inspection of a home’s interior. Loans for $25,000 or less were exempted from this requirement with a provision that the exemption level be revisited annually and revised on January 1 to reflect increases in the Consumer Price Index for Urban Wage Earners and Clerical Workers (CPI-W).

 

Ballard Spahr’s Barbara S. Mishkin wrote, “The CFPB has adopted changes to its Reg Z commentary to memorialize the calculation methods used each year to adjust the thresholds for exempt consumer credit transactions and for transactions exempt from the special appraisal requirements for higher-priced mortgage loans and to its Reg M commentary to memorialize the calculation method used each year to adjust the threshold for exempt consumer leases. The Fed and OCC have adopted corresponding changes to their commentaries. The changes are effective January 1, 2017.

 

Without miring you down in the technicalities of determining the process or index, lenders tuned in to the fact that using current calculation methods, the agencies have made no changes to the three exemption thresholds.  Effective January 1, 2017 through December 31, 2017, these exemption thresholds remain: smaller loans exempt from the appraisal requirement for “higher priced mortgage loans,” $25,500 consumer credit transactions exempt from Truth in Lending Act/Regulation Z, $54,600 (but loans secured by real property or personal property used or expected to be used as a consumer’s principal dwelling and private education loans are covered regardless of amount).

 

Turning to the capital markets, many are thinking that with the run up in rates and less regulation non-QM loans will become fashionable, two non-agency MBS deals totaling $815 million and made up of seasoned nonprime mortgages are anticipated to be issued in the next few weeks. Cerberus Capital’s FirstKey Mortgage is planning to issue the $551 million. “The loans have seasoned for an average of nearly 10 years and 71.0 percent of the collateral has a clean payment history for the past two years, per Fitch Ratings.” And New Residential Investment is preparing the $264 million New Residential Mortgage Loan Trust 2016-4. Affiliates of the issuers plan to use vertical retention to meet risk-retention requirements for the MBS.

 

Will those bonds be less valuable with the increase in rates? Or more valuable given the solid payment history of the loans? Stay tuned. But rates dropped a little Tuesday despite a strong Q3 GDP number – the market is seeing the demand outpace supply, and lower volatility. And don’t forget that the Conference Board’s Consumer Confidence Index jumped to its best level since August 2007. The Case-Shiller 20-city index of U.S. home prices rose 5.1% year over year in September.

 

This morning we’ve already had a bevy of economic news. The MBA’s Mortgage Index for last week quantified what lenders already knew. Apps fell over 9%, with refis taking it on the chin being down 16%. November ADP Employment Change was strong: +216k. October Personal Income and Spending was +.6% and +.3%. And October Core PCE Price Index was . Coming up are the November Chicago PMI, October Pending Home Sales, and November Fed’s Beige Book (14:00 ET)

 

Yesterday the 10-year note improved .125 in price (2.30%) and the 5-year Treasury and current coupon agency MBS prices also rallied about .125. It’s all been given back this morning: the 10-year is up to 2.36% and agency MBS prices are worse .250-.375 versus last night.

 

 

Okay, for better or worse, yesterday’s puns brought out several e-mails with…even worse puns & definitions.

Modem: What Billy Wayne did to the north and south pastures yesterday.

Specimen: Italian astronaut.

Bigamist: A heavy fog in Naples.

Bigotry: What you find in an Italian forest.

Why didn’t the melons get married? Because they cantaloupe.

What does a clock do when it gets hungry? It goes back four seconds.

Parallel lines have so much in common. Too bad they’ll never meet.

Why was Santa’s little helper feeling depressed? He had low elf-esteem.

What do you call a woman that stands between two goal posts? Annette.

 

 

Rob

 

(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.)