Dec. 19: Underwriting, LO, MI jobs, referral webinar; Ginnie & FHA news; pay attention to yield curve & Fed balance sheet

The cold temperatures sweeping the nation, especially in the Upper Plains, have plenty of folks wondering how Native Americans kept warm during the winter. They managed. But if you’d like to see what temperatures are anywhere in the nation, here’s a pretty nifty map. When do we head to Florida?


Speaking of the Plains, Radian, one of the industry’s largest private Mortgage Insurance companies, is growing again and the sales team has an excellent opportunity for a talented Senior Account Manager in Kansas City area and covers the KS, IA, and NE territory. The Senior Account Manager is responsible for maintaining and growing existing account relationships in their assigned territories. “We are looking for dynamic individuals who have experience in Mortgage Insurance sales and/or Mortgage business to business sales. If you are interested in joining the Radian team we would welcome the opportunity to speak with you.” Please send your confidential inquiry/resume to Kim Martin.


How many LOs do you know that can say Facebook is crucial to their business? Probably none. Yet, according to State of Inbound Marketing 2016, 42% of marketers reported Facebook is critical. Derivian Information is hosting 2, 30-minute webcasts showing how LOs are getting warm referrals from Facebook without being annoying or including trigger terms. Compliance Officers are highly recommended to attend. There will be a 10-minute overview of an automated platform that auto-scans LO social outlets for trigger terms. It also provides review, release and archiving for all automated and self-generated social posts. This webcast is being held Tuesday and Wednesday of this week (Dec 20th and 21st) at 11AM PT. Register HEREFor advance information contact Jason Lutz. Here is a 60-second video preview.


Fidelity Bank (Atlanta, GA) is seeking a Regional Underwriting Manager at its Corporate Office in Atlanta. “Strong FHA/VA and Conventional Experience required along with prior Management experience. Fidelity is a $3B Retail Lender with locations from Maryland to Florida and is a FNMA, FHLMC and GNMA Seller/Servicer. EOE/Veteran Status/Disability/Equal Opportunity/Affirmative Action Employer. To view additional details on the position and to apply, click here. Confidential questions and/or resumes can be directed to Farah Mahaffey, HR Banking Officer.


Assurance Financial has a solid reputation for closing loans on time. It’s what we do. Our back office supports its mortgage loan originators and branch managers so they can focus on originating more new loans rather than worrying about closing their pipeline. Assurance is expanding its footprint, selectively hiring Branch Managers and MLOs in good markets. For more information, contact Paul Peters, CMB at 225-239-7948 or visit Careers.


In HUD, VA, Ginnie Mae, and FHA news…


FHA issued a communication to notify its FHA-approved mortgagees that originate and service Title II forward mortgages of an error to ML 2016-20 2017 Nationwide Forward Mortgage Limits. It referenced an incorrect limit ceiling for Alaska, Hawaii, Guam, and the Virgin Islands, which are identified as “special exception areas” due to higher construction costs in these areas. It is important to note that while referenced incorrect limit ceiling for special exemption areas, there are no changes to the forward mortgage limits in these, or any other jurisdiction. The downloadable files that provide the complete list of FHA loan limits for 2017 are posted on the Maximum Mortgage Limits web page, and are not impacted. FHA will issue a revised Mortgagee Letter that provides official notification of the correction to the limit ceiling for calendar year 2017 in special exemption areas soon. Additionally, it was reported that the List of Increased Loan Limits CY16 to CY17 that was posted on the Maximum Mortgage Limits web page in support of ML 2016-20, did not show the correct loan limits for 2017. That comparison chart has also been updated, and you are advised to discard any previous version you may have downloaded.


Effective as of December 1, 2016, VA has raised appraisal fees in the following states: Arizona, California, and Nevada. Mountain West Financial Fees and the Appraisal Fee Sheet have been updated to reflect this change on located under “Fees”.


Ditech is reminding its clients that VA loan limits do not apply to actual loan amount limits for VA home loans but are used to determine available VA entitlement and maximum potential VA guaranty for a VA loan in a particular county. Loan amounts may exceed county limits with sufficient down payment from veteran to meet the GNMA 25% equity and VA guaranty requirement. The county loan limits do NOT apply to IRRRLs. VA will guarantee 25% of the principal balance on an IRRRL, regardless of whether the loan exceeds the limit for the particular county.


Greystone recently announced that it ranked #1 in multifamily loan commitments issued by the U.S. office of Housing and Urban Development at the conclusion of the agency’s 2016 fiscal year. In addition to achieving the top notch in multifamily lender status for 2016, Greystone also closed and funded approximately $300 million in HUD-insured loans in November of this year. With over $1 billion in firm commitment issuance, Greystone tallied nearly 10% of total FHA multifamily lending volume from October 1, 2015 through September 30, 2016, HUD’s most recent fiscal year. More than half (37) of Greystone’s 72 loan commitments were 223(f) acquisition/refinance transactions, with the remaining deals including new construction and 223(a)(7) refinances for market rate multifamily and affordable housing properties nationwide.


Monthly Ginnie Mae MBS Issuance Dips.  Monthly securitizations on behalf of the GNMA eased, though the firm’s book of business grew. Monthly operational data indicate that there were $1.75 trillion in outstanding GNMA MBS as of Nov. 30. The Washington-based organization’s book of business grew from the end of the previous month, when the total was $1.73 trillion.


M&T Bank’s FHA 203(k) Product Pages have been edited to clarify and add content as follows: Repair types permitted and not permitted (both Limited and Standard) section, As-Is appraisal requirements, Contingency reserve requirements, draw disbursements at closing, and partially completed or work in progress projects section has been edited.


Plaza posted the following reminders: regarding Regulation Z Annual Threshold Adjustment, effective January 1st, the threshold increased from $20,350 to $20,579 for determining whether a loan is a High-Cost Mortgage (HCM) based on whether the points and fees are either 5% or 8% of the loan amount. Also, the CFPB decreased the 5-tier total points and fees thresholds used to determine whether a loan is a qualified mortgage, pursuant to Regulation Z. The maximum claim amount for FHA-insured Home Equity Conversion Mortgages (HECMs), or reverse mortgages, will increase to $636,150. These loan limits are effective for case numbers assigned on or after January 1, 2017.  Plaza will align with FHA and accept the new loan limits for case numbers assigned on or after January 1, 2017. In addition, Plaza’s Elite Jumbo Program Guidelines have been updated.


Effective with loans locked on and after December 15, 2016, Mortgage Solutions Financial is offering a purchase incentive of 0.250 for all purchase transactions with FICO ≥ 620 and FNMA, FHLMC, FHA, VA, and USDA financing.


NYCB Mortgage Banking issued the following reminders: 2017 Conforming Loan Limits are in effect as of 12.12.16. 2017 FHA Loan Limits will be available 01.01.17 and New 2017 High Balance Loan Limits are effective 12.19.16.


FHA published Mortgagee Letter 2016-21, Direct Endorsement Program – Timeframe for Conducting Pre-Endorsement Mortgage Review for Unconditional Direct Endorsement Authority. Concurrently, FHA today published a notice in the Federal Register (Docket No. FR-5658-N-02) that provides the required response to comments received from a March 2013 notice (FR-5658-N-01) where FHA announced it was considering this change. With this Mortgagee Letter, mortgagees approved to enter the Unconditional Direct Endorsement (DE) authority Test Case phase on or after April 1, 2017, will be required to submit only closed mortgages for FHA’s pre-endorsement review. Currently, FHA allows the submission of test case phase loans pre-closing or post-closing.


With two business weeks left (kind of) in 2016 it will be hard for the new political administration to claim that the economy was sagging when it took office. Last week was another positive data week for economic news, consistent with near 3% real GDP growth. Only two data points for November were worse than expected: Retail Sales and Housing Starts. It appears that both data sets were quirky. They are reminders, however, that the post- election surge in business and consumer confidence is not enough to support a lift to our fairly low potential GDP growth track.


The big, but expected, news of the week was the Federal Reserve announcing a rise in the Fed Funds interest rate. The Fed commentary in the policy statement and the economic projections from FOMC members show there is positivity in the air about the U.S. economy for 2017. Many expect three more rate hikes in 2017 according to the new “dot plot.” The motivation for these hikes with be inflation, and the Fed will be watching inflation indicators closely this spring. There is potential for the Fed to tighten policy, providing a “monetary offset” to new fiscal policy.


Looking at Friday, the U.S. Treasury yield curve steepened sharply as all the notes rallied but the bond declined. The expected future chair of the president’s Council of Economic Advisers, Larry Kudlow, sent a tweet that indicated he would probably support the U.S. Treasury issuing debt with maturities beyond 30 years, a topic on fixed-income traders’ minds since Treasury Secretary Nominee Steven Mnuchin suggested the possibility three weeks ago. The change in the yield curve since last week’s FOMC rate decision indicates higher short term rates but it does not indicate economic expansion as the back end the curve didn’t move much.


Perhaps more important were the comments by one Fed President. Bullard’s comments, in an interview with the Wall Street Journal, raised further angst for the basis when he talked of a preference for the Fed to begin shrinking its balance sheet saying, “The new year possibly might be a good time to play that card” and start allowing maturing bond securities not to be replaced as they are now. He added that he would prefer to let positions roll off. Speaking of which, due to the Fed’s break from reinvestments during the holiday this week sees eight FedTrade operations for the week including two each on Monday through Wednesday.


Real estate agents, lenders, and builders certainly tuned in to the news that U.S. housing starts fell to 1090K for the month of November from an upwardly revised reading of 1340K for October. Building permits fell to 1201K from the upwardly revised October number of 1260K for October. Although most of the decline was attributed to multi-family figures, let’s hope it is not the start of a trend.


Looking at news for this week, today and tomorrow, for some odd reason, there are no scheduled market-moving economic announcements. (Fed Chair Yellen is, however, speaking on the job market at the University of Baltimore 2016 Midyear Commencement ceremony.) That changes on Wednesday, however, when we have the MBA Mortgage Index for last week, and November Existing Home Sales.


Thursday (22nd) the excitement continues with an avalanche: the third estimate of Q3 GDP and the GDP Deflator, November Durable Orders and Durable Orders ex-trans, Initial Jobless Claims for last week, October FHFA Housing Price Index, November Leading Indicators, November Personal Income and Spending, and the November Core PCE Price Index. We’ll have an early close Friday but prior to that are some December University of Michigan Sentiment number and November New Home Sales.


For those who like numbers on Friday the 10-year note worsened about .125 in price to close yielding 2.60% and agency MBS prices worse about .125. This morning, on no news, the 10-year is hovering around 2.57% and MBS prices are better .250 versus Friday’s close.



Boudreaux was out of work and found an ad in the paper that said “Electrical engineer needed.”

So, he went to the power company and hand delivered his resume.

After reviewing the resume, Mr. Don (da boss) was astounded by Boudreaux’s tenacity to apply,

even without a formal education.

Well, the power company had a policy that you must take a 10-question test before you can

get hired. There were two people there to take the test that day. One was Mr. Fred, who

was a certified electrical engineer. And, of course, Boudreaux was the other.

They each took the test and returned to Mr. Don’s office to hand in their test papers. Mr. Don

asked the both of them to wait outside until he was done reviewing the two exams.

After about 10 minutes, Don called them back in and this is how it went.

Don: “Thanks to the both of you for applying for the position. But, we have made our decision and that decision is to hire Fred.”

Boudreaux: “What did Fred score on dat test?”

Don: “Ya’ll both scored 9 outta ten. You both only missed one question.”

Boudreaux: “Mais, why you gonna hire him den?”

Don: “Because on question #7, Fred answered ‘I don’t know’ and you answered ‘me neither.’”






(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.)

Rob Chrisman