Dec 31, 2008

Subprime losses double

According to an article in the Dallas Business Journals - realized losses due to the subprime crises have doubled since September of 2007 to 52% from 26%. For further information visit the DBJ website.

Dec 26, 2008

Mortgage rates skyrocket -

According to Holden Lewis  of, Mortgage rates went up this week from near-record lows as brokers and bankers scrambled to keep up with an influx of applications.

The benchmark 30-year fixed-rate mortgage rose 42 basis points, to 5.84 percent, according to the national survey of large lenders. One year ago, the mortgage index was 6.31 percent; four weeks ago, it was 5.97 percent.

The benchmark 15-year fixed-rate mortgage rose 16 basis points, to 5.46 percent. The benchmark 5/1 adjustable-rate mortgage rose 11 basis points, to 5.95 percent.

For further information

Processing company Privo ( has been experiencing higher than normal volumes in loans the past few weeks, however there are challenges associated with lower home prices.

Dec 25, 2008

Low rates drive mortgage applications up 48%

According to the USAToday, Mortgage applications surged to the highest level in more than five years in the latest week, as potential borrowers came out to refinance at interest rates near record lows.

The Mortgage Bankers Association said its seasonally adjusted index of mortgage applications, which includes both purchase and refinance loans, for the week ended Dec. 19 soared 48% to the highest reading since the week ended July 18, 2003.

For the full article, go to

Dec 18, 2008

Volatile rates - - down to 4.35% on Fixed

In the last few months, it has been common for mortgage rates to have big up-and-down swings during the day -- a phenomenon known as volatility. In a random quirk, rates have been particularly volatile the last four Wednesdays, which happens to be the day when Bankrate conducts its weekly survey. Because of this volatility, Bankrate's survey didn't capture the depth of the week's rate decline.

This week's survey shows that it pays to shop around. In Dallas, some lenders told Bankrate that they were offering the 30-year fixed at 4.75 percent, and one thrift was offering it at 6.375 percent. In Los Angeles, Lazerson would disclose the lending source of his 4.375 percent loan only upon sworn assurance of strict secrecy.

For the full story click on the link below.

Mortgage rates at 4 year lows

Consumer prices fall by largest amount in 61 years worth of records -

Another report from

A record plunge in consumer prices in November puts pressure on the Federal Reserve to act decisively to guard against a debilitating bout of deflation.

The Federal Reserve Tuesday cut its target for a key interest rate to the lowest level on record and pledged to use "all available tools" to combat a severe financial crisis and prolonged recession.

It also said it believes that inflationary pressures have diminished. "In light of the declines in the prices of energy and other commodities and the weaker prospects for economic activity, the Committee expects inflation to moderate further in coming quarters," the Fed said in a statement accompanying its decision on interest rates.

In other economic news, the Commerce Department reported that construction of new homes fell in November by 18.9 percent, the biggest drop in a quarter-century. The steep decline pushed construction down to a seasonally adjusted annual rate of 625,000 homes, the slowest pace on records dating to 1959.

Benchmark mortgage rate at 4-year low

Here is an article by Holden Lewis of

For a while Wednesday morning, people were getting conforming mortgages at less than 5 percent.

Rates didn't stay that low all day. By afternoon, they had gone up about a quarter of a percentage point. Dan Green, mortgage planner with the Mobium Group in Cincinnati, told his Twitter followers: "Today reminds us: The bird in the bush is ever-elusive. Lock mortgage rates when you have the chance."

There's reason to believe that borrowers will continue to have chances. The Federal Reserve made it clear Tuesday that it intends to push mortgage rates down and keep them low for a long time.

Bankrate's weekly rate survey didn't register as dramatic a decline in rates, for reasons that will be explained shortly. The benchmark 30-year fixed-rate mortgage fell 38 basis points, to 5.42 percent, according to the national survey of large lenders. One year ago, the mortgage index was 6.21 percent; four weeks ago, it was 6.33 percent.

The benchmark 15-year fixed-rate mortgage fell 21 basis points, to 5.3 percent. The benchmark 5/1 adjustable-rate mortgage fell 33 basis points, to 5.84 percent.

Bankrate has been surveying mortgage rates weekly since 1985. For the benchmark 30-year mortgage, the all-time low was set June 11, 2003, at 5.28 percent. This week it's 5.42 percent. In 23 years of weekly Bankrate surveys, the benchmark rate has been below 5.42 percent eight times. The last time it was lower than 5.42 percent was March 17, 2004, when it was 5.41 percent.

Dec 15, 2008

Job cuts adding to growing number of housing defaults

A recent article on the number of foreclosures appeared in the USA Today.

The low interest rates are bound to increase the number of refis in the short term as more and more of the introductory ARMs are going to come up for renewal this year - if they have not yet started last year.

Oct 31, 2008

What the Japanese think about the financial turmoil

Recently on a trip to Japan, I had an opportunity to speak with some Japanese people and asked about their thoughts on the current situation and its impact on the the land of the rising sun. I was with a few friends waiting at our hotel when some suits who were also at the same hotel walked past us and with their little knowledge of English uttered out "sub prime crises" giggled and walked on. This seems to be the lingering thought that the Japanese have in their minds regarding Americans these days!

While the subprime crises is snowballing in to a global financial crises, we at PrivoCorp are seeing more business from customers interested in reducing the turnaround times on their loans in addition to reducing their processing costs. With the end of the crises not yet in sight, loan officers would like to see the quickest turnaround on the loan process through closing and funding.

Sep 23, 2008

More Americans strain to meet housing costs

A growing number of Americans are struggling to pay for housing, despite a steep drop in home prices, according to an article in the USAToday. For the entire article go to

Sep 19, 2008

Fed bails out AIG

AIG - responsible for insuring much of the sub-prime mortgage in the market - has been bailed out by the Fed in return for about 80% equity and completely new management. Markets the world over must be heaving a sigh of relief.

Merrill to be acquired by BoA

Who would have thought? $50 billion is no small change either. The impact of the mortgage market crises doesnt seem to go away that quickly or easily

Lehman Brothers goes under

For those wondering about the impact of this on the financial markets - you can keep dreaming. This is huge.

Aug 12, 2008

NAMB Conferences: Relevant these days?

Anyone with opinions on whether these conferences are providing value to the broker community? Please post your comments on this issue.

While events like these provide a great opportunity for lenders to showcase their new products and to generally give their future/current business prospects/associates a good time, a question that comes to mind, is that in these days of acute change happening in the industry, is this a "must attend" event?

May 8, 2008

Is the credit crises over?

US Treasury Secretary, Henry Paulson seems to think that the worst of the credit crises might be over. The fed has provided $168 billion in tax rebates (although about $130 million of this is believed to have been used up by the rising gas prices). Housing is an area the fed is always on the watch out for. For details on the interview with Secretary Paulson, visit For white papers on the US mortgage industry sign up at PrivoCorp

House OKs $15B for states to buy, fix foreclosed properties

The govenment has come out with a plan to reduce the whirlpool effect of foreclosures driving down costs of homes further by this plan. For further information visit For selected articles and whitepapers visit

Mar 13, 2008

Mortgage Banking Magazine Has a New Web Site

Mortage banking magazine has completely revamped their website and has come up with the cool look and feel. Check out the introductory rates for subscription. This magazine is a must ready for US real estate finance professionals.

Mar 12, 2008

WSJ: Probe looks at Countrywide's origination practices

The Federal Bureau of Investigation is looking into whether troubled lender Countrywide Financial Corp. deliberately made loans to borrowers who did not have the assets or financial wherewithal to pay them back. For details on the article, please visit the Marketwatch website

Looking for jobs in Mortgage industry

If you are one of the numerous people in India looking for new opportunities in the mortgage industry, do let us know what prompted the change. Is it the macro economic scenario? the current company just becoming too boring? looking to move to another city? Whatever it may be, do post a few comments.

Feb 15, 2008

Mortgage Application Volume Skyrockets

This was the headline on the Yahoo! Finance website. The reasons for this are fairly obvious - as outlined in the article - but the key question as it relates to the US economy is - whether we have seen the last of the sub-prime ghost?

Subprime Crises

The crises with the US subprime is reaching alarming proportions as more and more banks across the world are declaring write downs resulting from their investments in this segment. Today, UBS has declared a loss of $4Billion and is only one of several European banks impacted by the crises. American banks of course have been impacted without exception.

As an outsourcing firm, Privo ( is being impacted with loss of clients as well as delay of in taking strategic outsourcing decisions.