Goldman Sachs over the hump on mortgage settlement obligations

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Almost two years after settling mortgage securitization allegations with the Department of Justice and a group of states, Goldman Sachs has fulfilled more than half of its consumer relief commitment.

Since the last settlement monitor's report in November, Goldman has forgiven more than $73.5 million in principal. Combined with previous activity and multipliers for certain types of allocations, it has put in total more than $918 million toward its $1.8 billion commitment.

On average, Goldman has forgiven $91,202 in principal per borrower, according to the most recent report by independent settlement monitor Eric Green. Borrowers have to earn forgiveness in stages by paying on time.

Goldman distributed the most recent round of consumer relief across 41 states, Washington, D.C., and Puerto Rico. More than one-third of the relief went to New York, Illinois and California. Hardest Hit Areas, which are census tracts identified by the Department of Housing and Urban Development as being particularly distressed, received 12% of the assistance.

The company agreed to provide the $1.8 billion in consumer relief as part of an agreement it entered into in April 2016 with the Department of Justice and the three states.

The settlement resolves allegations related to Goldman's marketing, structuring, arrangement, underwriting, issuance and sale of residential mortgage-backed securities.

The consumer relief commitment was just part of the more than $5 billion settlement Goldman agreed to. The settlement also included a large civil money penalty, among other things.

Also as part of the settlement, Goldman agreed to a "statement of facts." This included acknowledgements that it "received information indicating that, for certain loan pools, significant percentages of the loans reviewed specifically did not conform to the representations made to investors about the pools of loans to be securitized."

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