Mortgage rates hit new record low

The survey rate for a 30-year Freddie Mac home loan fell to a record low for the eighth time this year. At 2.88%, the average 30-year Freddie Mac rate was down slightly from 2.99% the previous week and represents a significant drop from 3.6% a year ago. (Full story here.)
ICE’s Sprecher Boosts Mortgage Business With Ellie Mae Deal
Rows of houses stand in Las Vegas, Nevada, U.S., as seen in this aerial photo taken on Tuesday, Sept. 22, 2009. Photographer: Jacob Kepler/Bloomberg

MERS owner Intercontinental Exchange to buy Ellie Mae for cash, stock

Intercontinental Exchange said it agreed to acquire Ellie Mae Inc. from private equity firm Thoma Bravo LLC in a deal that values the mortgage-lending platform at about $11 billion. (Full story here. )
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Forbearance extensions are skyrocketing

New payment suspensions due to coronavirus hardships have fallen, but the percentage of borrowers extending their forbearance plans has surged. While the number of forbearances fell to 3.8 million from 4.3 million between the week of June 7 and July 26, extensions have risen to 53.28% from 6.52%, according to Sagent’s blog. (Full story here. )

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Executives at Rocket Cos. ring the opening bell at the New York Stock Exchange. Left to right:<u> </u>Julie Booth, Rocket CFO<u>, </u>Jay Farner, Rocket CEO<u>, </u>Dan Gilbert, Rocket Founder &amp; Chairman<u>, </u>Bob Walters, President &amp; COO<u>. </u>Far right - Stacey Cunningham, President, NYS<br/>

Rocket's IPO lifts off, with first close up $3.51 per share

Rocket Cos. initial public offering recovered from some pre-opening jitters to end the day up $3.51 per share from its starting price of $18 per share. That was down from an expected range of between $20 and $22 per share; the offering was also downsized to 100 million shares from 150 million. (Full story here. )
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Hiring for mortgage jobs ramps up as loans keep streaming in

There were roughly 318,000 people on industry payrolls in June, up nearly 1% from the previous month and almost 9% from a year ago, according to the bureau. The BLS also made a slight upward revision to May’s mortgage numbers to 315,000 from 314,300. In June of last year, there were 292,000 people on nonbank mortgage industry payrolls. (Full story here. )

Mortgage credit rises in July, as ARMs, jumbos come back

Mortgage credit has loosened for the first time in eight months, as lenders brought some adjustable rate and jumbo products back into the market, the Mortgage Bankers Association said. July's Mortgage Credit Availability Index was 126.9, up 1.5% from June's 125 but well below July 2019's 189. (Full story here. )
FHFA headquarters in Washington, D.C.
The seal of the Federal Housing Finance Agency (FHFA) is displayed outside the organization's headquarters in Washington, D.C., U.S., on Wednesday, March 20, 2019. President Donald Trump's pick to lead Fannie Mae and Freddie Macs regulator pledged to work with Congress on overhauling the companies, while downplaying controversial positions he's previously laid out on everything from the 30-year-mortgage to affordable housing initiatives. Photographer: Andrew Harrer/Bloomberg

Multifamily borrowers in forbearance cannot evict tenants, FHFA says

Landlords with government-backed loans in forbearance must inform tenants in writing that they are protected from eviction, the Federal Housing Finance Agency said. Multifamily property owners with loans backed by Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac can enter into new or modified forbearance plans if they have a financial hardship as a result of the coronavirus, but the landlords must agree not to evict tenants solely for the nonpayment of rent. (Full story here. )

Black mortgage applicants nearly twice as likely to be denied

The ability to access credit and obtain a mortgage is significantly more challenging for would-be borrowers who are Black, Indigenous, People of Color, according to a Zillow analysis of the most recent data from the Home Mortgage Disclosure act. The analysis found that Black applicants were denied mortgages at a rate that is 80% higher than white applicants. (Full story here. )

Bipartisan team introduces plan to offer savings accounts for down payments

Sens. Doug Jones, D-Ala., and Cory Gardner, R-Colo., on Tuesday introduced the American Dream Down Payment Act, a bill that would allow states to offer prospective first-time homebuyers a savings account that provides a tax benefit while helping the account holder save up to a 20% down payment, the amount traditionally required for home loans. (Full story here. )

National MI beats expectations on 2Q earnings despite higher losses

NMI's net income for the second quarter was $26.8 million, compared to $58.3 million in the first quarter and $39.1 million in the second quarter of 2019. (Full story here. )
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Housing groups seek change to FHA loan restriction on student debt

The Mortgage Bankers Association and 18 other groups argue that the current requirements unfairly disqualify borrowers who have education loan debt by using “a formulaic calculation in lieu of the actual monthly obligation that appears on the credit report,” which then results in an artificially inflated debt-to-income ratio, they wrote in a letter to the FHA. (Full story here.)
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Plummeting mortgage rates afford buyers $32,000 more house

Purchasing power rose 10% year-over-year despite 97 straight months of annual housing price increases. With interest rates hitting record lows, buyers were able to afford $32,000 "more house" as of July 23 than they could the year before with the same monthly payment. (Full story here. )

Impac to revive third party originations, non-QM in 3Q

Impac lost $22.8 million for the second quarter, an improvement over the $64.7 million loss it posted in the first quarter. The company plans to relaunch TPOs in the first half of the current quarter, doing conforming and Veterans Affairs mortgages first. But later in the third quarter, it will roll out an expanded product menu that will include non-QM and jumbo, said George Mangiaracina, its chairman and CEO. (Full story here.)

$6.3 billion portfolio deal tests the bulk MSR market’s appetite

Incenter Mortgage Advisors is accepting bids on a nearly $6.3 billion offering on behalf of an unnamed seller. Bids must be emailed by noon Mountain time on Tuesday. The transaction is at least the second large, seasoned MSR deal seen since the government-sponsored enterprises suspended bulk purchases of loans more than six months old in early May. (Full story here.)