“Every saint has a past, and every sinner has a future.” The mortgage industry has both, and it is important to remember that individuals and companies do some fine works of charity around the nation – few of which are mentioned by the mainstream press. Today’s commentary has a random cross-section of what many are doing to help others in need, big and small. Of course I can’t print all of the efforts of hundreds of lenders and tens of thousands of individuals are doing, but it is important to remember that the industry is doing its part, and then some!
First some job news. A National Mortgage Company is looking for two Regional Operation Managers. The Company has Retail, Wholesale and Direct to Consumer channels and is both a FNMA & FHLMC Seller/Servicer, GNMA I&II Issuer, and jumbo and non-QM lender across the United States. The Regional Operations Manager is responsible for overseeing the regions pipeline management under the direction and partnership with Sales Management and will partner with the Underwriting Management and Closing teams to manage origination flow and address issues. The ideal candidate will have 5-7 years of current experience in the mortgage banking industry, knowledge of FHA and Conventional loan products, underwriting procedures, creditor financial analysis techniques, investor requirements and escrow/title practices, as well as regulatory compliance laws as they apply to mortgage transactions. The positions are located in Western half of the US and the salary is commensurate with experience. Please send inquires & resumes to Rob Chrisman.
On the wholesale side New Penn Financial “is a dynamic and rapidly growing mortgage lender with over 1,600 employees nationwide. Founded in 2008 and licensed in 48 states, New Penn Financial is a part of the Shellpoint Partners family of companies. Its reputation has grown substantially under the guidance of a management team with years of experience in the mortgage industry. New Penn Financial has been recognized in the top 20 Third Party Originations Lenders and was recently voted as being a great mortgage lender to work for by sales professionals.” New Penn Financial is hiring talented, experienced Wholesale Account Executives immediately in DC, Northern Virginia, and Raleigh, NC. To apply, please submit confidential resumes to Aubrie Cusumano.
Are you an LO looking for new clients? Working with “Heroes” is proving to be a wise choice. Tom Adams of Heroes Halo wrote to me saying, “The hero community wants to work with those that care about their unique needs. Professionals that can effectively market to them and align themselves to the hero cause can prosper in this niche.” HeroesHalo.com is a Cause Marketing platform that’s an affordable “make sense” Hero marketing program that lenders, LOs, and Realtors can join. Why do heroes love it? Because members “give back” to the hero when they close a transaction with one. Heroes are Military, Law Enforcement, Firefighters, First Responders, Health Care professionals, and Teachers. Members love it because they get continuous and sustainable new business while forming valuable partnerships with like-minded industry pro’s. Heroes Halo is growing- industry professionals are invited to join! Opportunities exist for (featured) lenders, LOs, and Realtors. (If you’d like to learn more contact Tom Adams.)
Lenders continue to help those less fortunate. Of course I can’t list every company’s & individual’s good works, but here is a random sampling of lenders helping others that are usually not mentioned by the mainstream press.
Over the past 4 years, the employees of Fairway Independent Mortgage Corporation have contributed over $1.5 million dollars to Fairway’s non-profit, the American Warrior Initiative, to fund initiatives all over the country for wounded veterans. Those initiatives have included business grants, service dogs, vehicles, mortgage free homes, home upgrades and remodels, home furnishings, housing assistance, help for homeless veterans, sponsorship of para-triathletes, and much more. “The mission of Fairway’s American Warrior Initiative is to educate and inspire Americans to give back to our wounded heroes. Over the past 3 years, almost 50 boot camps have been held across the country, led by Louise Thaxton with Fairway and Sean Parnell, Army Ranger and author of the NY Times best seller, ‘Outlaw Platoon.’ These boot camps are hosted by Fairway branches and over 10,000 real estate agents have not only received continuing education credits, they also learned how to best serve and give back to military clients with the message of, ‘None of us can do everything but all of us can do ONE THING.’ Through payroll deduction, Fairway employees, loan officers, processors, underwriters, contribute on a monthly basis to fund these life changing initiatives. In the words of CEO Steve Jacobson, “They served us – now we serve them.”
Paramount Residential Mortgage Group, Inc. has invested over $350,000 into the PRMG University program that has proven to be highly successful with Brokers and Originators by providing continued education and NMLS certification programs. “PRMG’s training specialists are passionate about delivering the best customized training, in helping Brokers and Originators remain current and up to date with NMLS and S.A.F.E training and certification through both live classes at PRMG Campus in Corona, CA and via online webinars… and it doesn’t stop there – we have our own independent Non-Profit 501(C)3 Foundation (PRMG Cares). In our case, the charity it is a major push toward supporting our veterans.”
Ann Arbor’s Gold Star Mortgage Financial Group is proud to be an active member of the communities it serves. CEO Dan Milstein wrote, “Some of our most recent charitable initiatives include an annual Make-A-Wish charity golf outing, quarterly Gold Star ‘FUNdraisers’ (small, corporate-sponsored events held every quarter that give employees an opportunity to socialize while contributing to causes they care about, such as the local Humane Society), annual toy drives for the Toys-For-Tots program [that we’ve been doing for several years], and a holiday gift collection for Adopt-A-Family, a program that benefits local families in need in the communities across the country we operate in. At this year’s Make-A-Wish golf outing (this year was our second annual), we raised $10,000, enough to grant a full wish to a child facing a life-limiting illness.”
CEO Susan McHan noted, “For Opes Advisors, giving in our communities and helping those in need comes in many ways and forms. While company-sponsored donations to national and local charities, like the American Cancer Society, Ronald McDonald House at Stanford, Makindu Children’s Program, and Habitat for Humanity are aligned deeply with the company’s culture, employees actively participate in worthy causes and we contribute along with them. In September, ‘Team Opes’ had a successful running of the San Jose Rock ‘n’ Roll Marathon, raising over $10,000 for the Alzheimer’s Foundation of America, with a company-matching donation. Sometimes these are as simple as caring about a cause. Opes’ employees created a photo campaign on social media in October called #whyIpink to share about the personal impact of cancer to raise awareness. We believe it is our mission to contribute to the financial wellbeing of our clients and communities by giving where we can lend a hand.”
International City Mortgage (ICM) has answered the call of the NWCA (National Wrestling Coaches Assoc.) The NWCA needed a highly functional website for its members and the college and high school wrestling communities. ICM agreed to step forward with its IT staff and build the site and now it averages over 20k eyeballs per pay. ICM’s President and CEO wrestled at Millikan High School in Long Beach, CA and at The College of William & Mary in Virginia. NCWA Executive Director Mike Moyer wrote, “On behalf of the NWCA Board of Directors, we are forever grateful for the extraordinary support of ICM in their efforts to significantly enhance our website so that we are better positioned to grow the number of wrestlers, wrestling programs, and wrestling coaches across America.”
“At Wells Fargo, we embrace our responsibility to be a leading corporate citizen and we welcome the opportunity to create more resilient, sustainable communities through our operations and actions. United Way Worldwide has recognized Wells Fargo for having the top employee-giving campaign in the U.S. for six consecutive years. In 2014, Wells Fargo & Company donated $250 million to nonprofit organizations, schools, and religious institutions and the Wells Fargo Housing Foundation donated nearly $20 million in support of affordable housing initiatives serving low-and moderate-income households – including for seniors, veterans, and families – through community revitalization efforts. Since its inception in 1993, the Wells Fargo Housing Foundation has invested more than $150 million to such efforts, along with mobilizing more than 4.6 million team member volunteer hours to build and rehabilitate more than 5,500 homes and counting.”
Wonderful charitable works aside, the U.S. Justice Department said Wells will have to pay $81.6 million in remediation costs for its “repeated failure” to provide homeowners with legally required notices. The bank was accused of denying homeowners the opportunity to challenge the accuracy of mortgage payment increases. The department said the failures violated federal bankruptcy rules that took effect in December 2011, which imposed more detailed disclosure requirements to ensure proper accounting of fees and charges on homeowners in bankruptcy.
Rep. Mick Mulvaney, R-S.C., reportedly will introduce legislation to release Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac from government conservatorship once they accumulate a 5% capital cushion, and strike their debt as repaid. The expected bill, which would face strong opposition, would let investors share the two companies’ profits.
The industry is very interested in what Freddie Mac and Fannie Mae are up to, and this week saw the duo announce their earnings. First was Freddie Mac which reported a loss of over $500 million – its first loss in over four years! Federal Housing Finance Agency Director Mel Watt said the Treasury may have to inject some capital. “Volatility in interest rates coupled with a capital buffer that will decline to zero in 2018 under the terms of the senior preferred stock purchase agreements with Treasury will likely make both enterprises increasingly susceptible to the possibility of quarterly losses that could result in draws going forward.” Freddie’s loss reflected two market-related items: a $1.5 billion loss on the value of derivatives used to hedge the company’s interest rate risk versus a $600 million loss due to credit spread changes on various assets and liabilities measures at fair value.
Fannie, however, logged in with a profit of $1.96 billion, half of its prior results – but heck, who wouldn’t take nearly $2 billion? The decline to $1.96 billion was driven by fair-value losses: the drop in long-term interest rates hurt the value of Fannie’s derivative position. Fannie Mae saw its 15th straight profitable quarter and said it will pay a dividend of $2.2 billion to the U.S. Treasury next month. With that payment, Fannie will have paid a total $144.8 billion in dividends.
Politicians are more or less content when Fannie & Freddie are paying billions into “The System”. Freddie has paid $96.5 billion in dividends to the Treasury as of Sept. 30 — more than the $71.3 billion in bailout support it has received from taxpayers. But Freddie’s loss was used by some to voice their displeasure. Rep. Ed Royce, R-Calif., warned that Freddie’s loss was an imminent threat to taxpayers. (Under the conservatorship, Freddie cannot retain capital, and will have to go to Treasury if it suffers a serious loss.) “Losses like this combined with multimillion dollar CEO salaries at the GSEs are the warning shots of a return to the pre-crisis model of private gains and public losses that wrecked the economy,” Royce said in a press release. “We can’t simply put the blinders on and say that Fannie and Freddie are just like other companies when taxpayers are on the hook if they go in the red.” As one might recall Royce has introduced legislation to reform Fannie Mae and Freddie, including limiting the total CEO compensation at the GSEs to $600,000 a year each.
Freddie and Fannie have done a pretty good job of lowering overall risk by increasing their core profitability (all of which flows to the Treasury), reducing legacy assets, and engaging in more risk-sharing (at least by using the large bank lenders). The GSEs are required to reduce their retained portfolios and transfer credit risk away from taxpayers to the private sector, which will also reduce overall revenues.
Shifting our collective gaze to rates, yesterday the long-term bond market hemmed and hawed and by the end of the day didn’t see much movement. Short term rates, however are on the move and the 2-year note yield touched its highest level since February 2011. But today is the first Friday of the month, and that means… the jobs report. Ready for a December Fed change in short-term rates? At 271k Nonfarm Payrolls exceeded expectations, the Unemployment Rate at 5.0%, Hourly Earnings shot higher… and bond prices are down. Given the strong employment numbers the 10-year yield is up to 2.31% and agency MBS prices are worse by .5 versus Thursday’s close.
Foodies know that grapes, cranberries, and blueberries sum up the fruits native to North America that are grown commercially. Did you know that cranberries are hollow? With a nod to the big Thanksgiving meal coming up, ever wonder where cranberries come from, or what like skiing over them would be like? Here you go: http://vimeo.com/72925384
(Copyright 2015 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.)