June 2, 2015

MBS MID-DAY: Widespread Negative Reprices as Monday Pattern Continues

With corporate issuance subsiding somewhat and month-end tradeflows providing steadier demand, the last week of May proved to be an eye of the storm.  As we discussed last Friday and again this morning, the new month reinvigorates the risks as far as corporate issuance is concerned.  Indeed, most recent Mondays have spoken to the market’s general level of anxiety when it comes to accommodating another glut of new debt supply each week.  Today is already off to a fast start, and the rest of the week is expected to remain busy.  The anxiety therefrom is evident in today’s bond market losses.

Keep the following in mind at all times during June.  Any dip in rates that challenges the lower recent range will be seized as an opportunity for corporate debt issuers to roll out new deals.  This will make it very difficult to make meaningful progress below, say, 2.10 in 10yr yields.  It’s not impossible, but it would take help from this week’s big ticket economic data. 

We had our first dose of big data today and ISM Manufacturing only served to accelerate the selling pressure.  Corporate issuance notwithstanding, stronger economic data helps advance the case for a timely Fed rate hike.  In general, if data is strong or improving, it makes September a more likely rate hike month.  The more this week’s data surprises to the upside, the rougher things could become for fans of low rates.

Article source: http://www.mortgagenewsdaily.com/mortgage_rates/blog/476507.aspx

MBS Day Ahead: One Day of Calm Before the Storm

On some occasions, we look ahead to big-ticket events like central bank announcements and NFP reports with more anticipation and anxiety than they deserve.  That’s understandable because these events historically pack the biggest punch when it comes to market movement potential.  Other times, it’s been safe enough to be fairly dismissive of the market movement potential.  This week may be in another category altogether.

The three days coming up at the end of this week are all but guaranteed to cause a significant move in bond markets.  This will begin with the ECB announcement and ADP on Wednesday and end with NFP on Friday.  Granted, there is always some small chance that the motivations from the events leaves us in some sort of weird, volatile equilibrium, but it’s more likely that we’ll be on the move. 

Then there’s today.  Where does it fit in with all the heady stuff that transpires on the last three days of the week?  Simply put, it doesn’t.  It’s an opening act for a show so big that people are more concerned with making sure they won’t need to revisit the restroom once the main act takes the stage.  The only scheduled data that could even be considered lower-second-tier would be Factory Orders at 10am.  If we see any significant movement, it’s far more likely to be the result of corporate debt-related tradeflows or unexpected European headlines. 

In such an environment, all we can do is watch the range.  To that end, we have 2.13 as resistance as far as 10yr yields are concerned.  The analogous ceiling for Fannie 3.0s would be 101-06.  The scary part is how far away the supportive levels are (2.28 for 10’s and 100-09 for Fannie 3.0s).  In other words, we could lose a lot of ground without even threatening a breakout of the range.  And just as Friday’s rally showed, a range break doesn’t guarantee confirmation and follow-through.  Markets aren’t showing a clear bias in terms of tradeflows and technicals here.  We’re at the whim of data and events.

2015-6-1 back in the range

Article source: http://www.mortgagenewsdaily.com/mortgage_rates/blog/476641.aspx

TRID training; Supreme Court Decides 2nd Mortgage Case; Title and MI Updates

Some
in the industry are focused on Wells Fargo CEO John Stumpf’s recent
comments saying that cybersecurity and an evolving payments industry are
the two biggest risks to banks. “It’s not if but when,” right?

Mortgage Returns is preparing to launch a new, mobile ready, CRM platform, and as part of the kickoff is inviting attendees of the Mastermind Summit to join management at the Ghostbar located at The Palms, Las Vegas today from 8-10PM. Those wishing to attend must RSVP to Mortgage Returns’ Director of Marketing Kim Goldstone.

Yes, in August we’ll find out who is still closing loans and providing customer support and who isn’t. “REMN Wholesale’s management has brought in a heavy hitter to lead their next TRID educational webinar this Thursday.
Benjamin Olson, former deputy assistant director for the Office of
Regulations at the Consumer Financial Protection Bureau, will be presenting REMN’s latest free TRID webinar,
produced in conjunction with National Mortgage Professional magazine.
Olson is a partner of BuckleySandler LLP and intricately involved with
the preparations for the CFPB’s final rules and forms surrounding TRID,
making him one of the few true experts on the pending changes. And on
the hiring side REMN
Wholesale continues its search for seasoned account executives
nationwide and underwriters in its Woodland Hills, CA office. Know anyone who’d be interested? Have them send their confidential resumes to REMN’s Amanda Miele.

Sometimes
when change is in the air, like with TRID, it is good for loan officers
and others in the industry to remember what RESPA and TILA are meant to
do – their purpose. Here’s a little write up to help keep things in
context: “To Understand TRID Changes, It is Good to Know the History.”

In a win for banks non-bank lenders, the Supreme Court ended 2nd
mortgage/bankruptcy debate when it ruled that underwater homeowners
can’t get rid of a second mortgage by filing for bankruptcy protection. All
nine Supreme Court justices agreed that filing for chapter 7 bankruptcy
protection doesn’t give homeowners the power to cancel a second
mortgage
when their properties aren’t even worth the value of the first
mortgage. The case
involved two Florida homeowners who tried to cancel their second
mortgages from Bank of America, arguing that because a second mortgage
gets paid after the first, it is essentially worthless. Lenders,
however, fought to keep the second mortgage liens, arguing that the debt
could someday be fully paid once property values rise. Remember that in
1992 Supreme Court justices determined that a bankrupt homeowner
doesn’t have the power to cancel the lien on an underwater first
mortgage. To put things in context, last year more than 700,000
individuals and couples filed for chapter 7 bankruptcy, the most popular
type of consumer bankruptcy, which enables a court-appointed trustee to
sell a person’s property to repay debts and then cancel the rest. And
about 2.1 million underwater homeowners had second liens at the end of
the second quarter of 2014, said lawyers for Bank of America, citing a
CoreLogic report.

In other legal news First Tennessee settled a lawsuit with the FHA for $212 million.
Once again The False Claims Act was cited. “‘First Tennessee admitted
failings that resulted in poor quality FHA loans,’ said Acting U.S.
Attorney John A. Horn of the Northern District of Georgia, in a
statement released Monday. ‘While First Tennessee profited from these
loans, taxpayers incurred substantial losses when the loans defaulted.'”

And the public has another way of investing in mortgage banking: Blackstone is coming out with an initial public offering (IPO).
Blackstone, of course, has been buying mortgage companies lately, such
as Pinnacle in the West and Gateway Funding in the East and is pretty
much global force in commercial and residential real estate.

As a gauge of general business, the American Land Title Association
(ALTA), the national trade association of the land title insurance
industry, reported title insurance premium increased 11.1 percent during
the first quarter of 2015 when compared to the same period a year ago.
The title insurance industry generated $2.6 billion in title insurance
premiums during the first quarter of 2015 compared to $2.3 billion
during the first quarter of 2014 according to ALTA’s 2015 First-Quarter Market Share Analysis.

Zelman Associates published its April Mortgage Originator Survey,
indicating that purchase volume has remained strong withstanding the
minimal improvement in credit conditions due to overlays and regulatory
changes. Key takeaways from the survey include purchase applications
increasing 13 percent YoY, with 52% of respondents experiencing
better-than-expected volume. Purchase trends remain positive based on
traffic and preapproval activity, but a lack of inventory is still a
challenge in certain areas. The credit quality index dropped to 65 for
the fifth consecutive month due to an increase of first-time buyers
entering the market and the underwriting index declined to 65.9,
reaching the lowest level in five years. Over the next year, 38 percent
of lenders expect to see further credit easing as well. Lenders do not
expect a significant change in nonbank lenders’ credit standards despite
lawsuits surrounding FHA lending. The availability of private mortgage
insurance was rated at 69.6 up from the 2014 average of 65.5. To learn
more about the Mortgage Originator Survey for April, contact Ivy Zelman.

And the Mortgage Credit Availability Index increased for the sixth consecutive month in March
by 2.3 percentage points, indicating a loosening of credit standards.
The growth in credit availability among the low interest rate
environment and the increase in home equity will open up the market for
purchase originations in the near future. The MBA predicts that in 2015,
total originations will reach $1.349 billion, which is higher than the
leading industry forecast of $1.256 billion. The increase in credit is
supported by government actions which include the FHFA’s G-Fee decision
this month, which is expected to result in a flatter LLPA grid, the
FHFA’s finalization of the Private Mortgage Insurance Eligibility
Requirements which is likely to be softened, additional clarification of
lender liability under FHA’s endorsement requirements this year and a
possible extension of HARP. Through these government actions, an
incremental increase in the expansion of credit availability should
follow. To read the full report by Compass Point Research Trading, LLC, click here.

So let’s play some catch up on MI news.

Starting
in mid-March Lender Paid Mortgage insurance option became available for
LTVs 95.01 to 97% on conforming fixed loans through NYCB Mortgage.

ditech has announced the addition of National Mortgage Insurance (NMI)
for its non-delegated and delegated clients submitting loans for
underwriting. As a reminder, when submitting a loan to ditech for
underwriting, please select your preferred MI Company on the
Correspondent Lending Underwriting Submission Checklist. The selected MI
Company will be used if possible. See Product Matrices for complete
product details.

MGIC
published its April operating statistics, with new notices declining by
15.4% YoY and 1.6% MoM, a year earlier new notices were down 18% YoY
and 3% MoM. New insurance written reached $3.6 billion and paid claims
dropped 3.4% MoM. Net recessions and denials declined to 61 from 72 a
month earlier and ending delinquent inventory was down 20.9% YoY
compared to 21.3% YoY in March and down 27.9% a year ago. For the full
report of MGIC’s monthly operating statistics, click here.

A few weeks ago MGIC
announced it is removing all market-related underwriting restrictions,
effective with MI applications received on or after May 18.

Somewhat recently Rohit Gupta, President and CEO, Genworth U.S. Mortgage Insurance weighed in on
the FHFA’s extension of the eligibility date for HARP mortgages through
December of 2016 in the following statement: “Genworth U.S. Mortgage
Insurance supports the changes announced by the Federal Housing Finance
Agency (FHFA) on May 8, 2015, to extend the eligibility date for the
Home Affordable Refinance Program (HARP) through December 2016.  Since
the launch of the HARP initiative in 2009, Genworth has aligned with
HARP guidelines to provide more than 100,000 eligible homeowners the
opportunity to reduce their mortgage payment by an average of almost
$200 each month. Genworth is committed to helping borrowers stay in
their homes, and we’re ensuring that our guidelines allow as many
homeowners as possible to take advantage of the HARP refinance
opportunity.” Click to link to read the formal announcement of FHFA at the Greenlining Institute Annual Economic Summit.

MI company United Guaranty
expanded underwriting requirements for Student loan payment calculation
and Rate/term refinance transactions: seasoned subordinate liens.

Essent
Guaranty, Inc. and MortgageFlex Systems, Inc., an established provider
of loan origination and servicing technology, announced that Essent MI is available to lenders through MortgageFlex’s LoanQuest mortgage loan origination system (LOS).
Lenders now will have access to Essent MI for delegated and
non-delegated loans and real time rate quotes directly from the LOS.

Turning to the markets the economy impacts everyone, especially those in the lending industry, and here’s a comment from Ken Odeluga, a senior market analyst at www.cityindex.com.sg.
“The US economy got off to a weaker start than first thought with first
quarter economic activity showing a decline of 0.7%, a reversal from
the initial 0.2% advance for the period reported last month. However
despite this decline in economic growth, the housing market has remained
particularly robust, with pending home sales hitting a nine-year high
last month. New home sales and construction were also strong in April.
In fact it was an upward revision in residential construction last
quarter which offset some of the weakness elsewhere. However the picture
isn’t quite so clear going forward. Although
unemployment is significantly low at 5.4%, meaning more people are in
employment so would be able to hold a mortgage, consumer confidence is
pulling back and the possibility of a rate rise is looming towards the
third quarter of this year, all of which could easily negatively impact
pending sales and therefore the housing market in the coming months.”

We
did have a spate of news upon which to chew yesterday – most of it
showing that the economy continues to book along and thus nudge rates
higher. We learned that Personal Income was +.4% in April while spending
was flat. PCE,
a measure of inflation, rose 0.1% over the prior month and 1.2% over
the prior year on a “core” basis. Construction Spending was +2.2% in
April, creeping above $1 trillion – up about 5% versus a year ago. ISM
Manufacturing showed that economic activity in the manufacturing sector
expanded in May for the 29th consecutive month, and the overall economy
grew for the 72nd consecutive month. And when you combine all that with a
glob of $25-30 billion in corporate debt supply hitting the market,
well, rates went up.

Today Greece is all over the news, and in the United States we’ll have some 2nd
tier numbers that generally don’t move rates much. We’ll have April
Factory Orders at 8AM Mountain Time (expected flat), and some May auto
and truck sales figures. And for numbers we
had a 2.18% closing yield on the risk-free U.S. 10-yr T-note versus
this morning’s 2.23% – and agency MBS prices are worse about .250 in
price.

Jobs and Announcements

In sales management
opportunities, a
well-established, highly competitive National Consumer Direct Lender,
based in Southern California is seeking a highly motivated Sales Leader
to manage their Consumer Direct Division, consisting of 3 to 5 direct reports. Interested parties can send confidential resumes to me at rchrisman@robchrisman. com. (Please specify the opportunity, and excuse any delays due to travel to Denver.)

AnnieMac Home Mortgage
continues to invest in our industry by putting dollars toward
education. We offer TRID training for Realtors and title companies
because, ‘A process is not good enough; education awareness with
accountability is what will differentiate.’ Come August the conversation will become a tale of the HAVE’S HAVE NOT’S. The
‘haves’ will enjoy benefits of their training and processes, the ‘have
not’s will miss closing dates and be on damage control, there is no
middle ground here. There is a significant market share grab presenting
itself for those who are prepared. AnnieMac is pursuing for Q3 expansion branches with a track record of at least $5 MILLION in monthly fundings. AnnieMac Home Mortgage
is a leading, national privately-held firm. We are a FNMA, FHLMC, and
GNMA approved seller/servicer and devoted to the organic
controlled growth of its business units. Contact Paul Zinn, National Director of Business Development, at 856-577-7749 if you would like to learn how AnnieMac can grow your business.”

Article source: http://www.mortgagenewsdaily.com/channels/pipelinepress/06022015-trid-training.aspx

New Home Activity has a Decidedly Southern Drawl

The old adage might be “go West” but new home buyers aren’t listening.  A recent analysis by CoreLogic shows that the
strongest new home sales markets are overwhelmingly in the South, especially
Texas and North and South Carolina. 

New home sales increased nationally in the 12 months ended in January by 3
percent but rose by as much as 17 percent in some fast growing southern
metropolitan areas.  The region claimed eight
out of 10 of the markets where the sales increase was the greatest compared to the
same period a year earlier, led by Nashville the 17 percent gainer.  One of the two big increases outside of the
South was in San Jose (the other was Portland, Oregon, in eighth place) where
new home sales rose 14 percent.

Atlanta had the third greatest increase at 10 percent, which CoreLogic calls
particularly remarkable as the area is only now recovering from its prolonged
bout with foreclosures.  Distressed sales
still constituted 16 percent of its total market during the period.  Jacksonville, Florida also saw increased new
home sales of around 10 percent.  The
other southern metro areas in the top ten were Greenville, South Carolina; Sarasota-Bradenton;
Fort Worth-Arlington; San Antonio, and Miami.

 

 

CoreLogic also looked at those markets where new home sales made up the
largest portion of all sales and again these were predominantly in the South
including all but one of the top ten.  The
market with the highest new home sales share was El Paso, where 22 percent of
all sales were new construction, compared with only 8 percent nationally.  The author of the article regarding these
sales, Sam Khater says that this is not atypical of El Paso where the overall
housing market has been stable and the portion of new home sales has been as
well, averaging 22 to 24 percent over the previous 15 years.

 

 

In Raleigh 21 percent of sales were of new homes, followed by Charleston, South
Carolina at 20 percent.  Khater says that
Charleston is also one of the five cities he identified out of the top 50 that
has more new sales than it did in the early 2000s.  Prices for new homes however have been
increasing rapidly, up $60,000 in two years, a greater appreciation than over
the previous 12 years, which may impact sales in the future.

Three Texas cities, Houston, San Antonio, and Austin took positions four
through six, each with a slightly smaller than 20 percent new home sales
share.  Rounding out the top ten were Charlotte,
Jacksonville, Colorado Springs, and Orlando. 
New homes sales in each topped 15 percent of the market.

The 441,000 new homes sold over the 12 month period were still well below
the 660,000 average for new home sales over the last 50 years.  CoreLogic says however that in many of the
remaining metros with solid job growth, the reality of very low inventory of
unsold new homes, declining vacancies and rapid price appreciation will lead to
more construction in the next few years that will lift many more markets above
their current new home sales trajectory.

Article source: http://www.mortgagenewsdaily.com/06012015_new_home_sales.asp

Mortgage Rates Bounce Higher After 7 Day Winning Streak

Mortgage rates moved noticeably higher to begin the month, bringing the average conventional 30yr fixed quote back to 4.0% after briefly hitting 3.875% on Friday.  Today’s move higher follows 7 consecutive days where rates either held steady or moved lower.  As we discussed last week, we were highly likely to see at least a temporary pull back some time soon.  The rationale was that any time financial markets do one thing for several consecutive days,
odds increase exponentially that they’ll do something different soon.

That’s all well and good, but the logic only applies to the initial pull back.  It doesn’t do as much to speak to the next move.  From what we’ve seen today with respect to the recent range in rates, there is still plenty of reason to be cautious.  That said, if last week’s positivity had carried over into this week, it would still make sense to remain cautious unless we were seeing a substantial improvement.  There are too many risky events on the near term horizon capable of causing significant movement.  These events can either help or hurt, but the size of the potential movement is too big for most borrowers to want to risk floating through them.  These events begin in earnest on Wednesday.


Loan Originator Perspective

“The beginning of June hasn’t been friendly for rates. All of the gains
we enjoyed the last week of May were wiped away rather quickly today.
If you didn’t lock on Friday, I would float overnight and see what
tomorrow brings. Typically during sell offs, lenders tend to take away a
little more than the price drop warranted.” -Victor Burek, Open Mortgage

“Confirmation.  That’s what today looks like to me.  There’s been much written recently about the 2.1 to 2.3 range in 10 year treasuries and how we’re stuck there.  I favor locking when we’re at or close to 2.1 and floating if we’re above 2.2.  It’s a very narrow range with little to be gained or lost unless the range is broken.  Borrowers should be mindful that is this NFP week so large fluctuations leading up to and including Friday’s NFP report can’t be ruled out.” -Jason B. Anker, Vice President- Loan Officer at Salem Five


Today’s Best-Execution Rates

  • 30YR FIXED - 3.875 -4.00%
  • FHA/VA – 3.75
  • 15 YEAR FIXED – 3.125-3.25
  • 5 YEAR ARMS –  2.75 – 3.25% depending on the lender


Ongoing Lock/Float Considerations

  • 2015 began with a strong move to the lowest rates seen since May 2013.  The catalyst was Europe and the introduction of European quantitative easing.

  • It’s a highly uncertain time for global financial markets.  On the one
    hand, some believe we’re in the midst of a race among world central
    banks to devalue currencies and lower interest rates.  Others believe
    that the global economy is turning a corner and rates will grind
    higher.  That had been creating a lot of volatility, which made for
    uncertain fluctuations from day to day.  But those periods of volatility
    have been interspersed by utter indecision where rates are effectively
    drifting sideways with no conviction and no desire to get off the fence.
    • With European QE having now begun, we’re on high alert for a big picture
      bounce in European economic data, sentiment, growth, and rates.  The
      more it looks like such a bounce is taking hold, the greater the risk
      that domestic bond markets and mortgage rates will also experience a big
      bounce higher.   Those risks are being compounded by speculation about the Federal Reserve raising rates by the end of 2015.

    • We’re in the middle of the 2nd big, ugly bounce so far this year and once again forced to confront the possibility that this will be a big-picture, long-lasting correction.  Until such a thing can be ruled out, Locking makes far more sense.  That said, the upward momentum in rates during this move has subsided to such an extent that we can say markets are considering their next move. 

    • As always, please keep in mind that the rates discussed generally refer to what we’ve termedbest-execution(that is, the most frequently quoted, conforming, conventional 30yr fixed rate for top tier borrowers, based not only on the outright price, but also ‘bang-for-the-buck.’  Generally speaking, our best-execution rate tends to connote no origination or discount points–though this can vary–and tends to predict Freddie Mac’s weekly survey with high accuracy.  It’s safe to assume that our best-ex rate is the more timely and accurate of the two due to Freddie’s once-a-week polling method). 

    Article source: http://www.mortgagenewsdaily.com/consumer_rates/476560.aspx

    MBS RECAP: 2015 Realities Continue to Frustrate Bond Markets

    Welcome to the 1st half of 2015.  This is the 6 month period where European interest rates defied even the most bullish expectations after Europe began the QE process.  It resulted in German 10yr Bunds getting very close to 0% in April.  Then the fear took hold.

    Lower rates and weaker Euros were the most popular trades during the QE roll-out.  Once market participants feared those trades had run their course, the bounce back was swift.  Bund yields went from .15 to .80 in just over a week.  At the same time, the Fed had just removed the verbiage from their policy announcement that provided calendar clues for a rate hike.  All of the above served as massive motivation for any corporations to issue debt immediately as corporate bond rates are tied to Treasury yields.  By issuing sooner rather than later, they were/are hoping to avoid a continued push to higher rates later in the year.

    And issue they have!  Coming off an all-time record month in May, today got June off to a fast start in terms of corporate issuance with over $10bln today alone.  As we’ve discussed, not all of this issuance amounts to direct competition for Treasuries and MBS, but for some investors, it does.  Additionally, the firms that handle the books for the corporations issuing the debt will often protect the deals from interest rate volatility with hedging activities that cause weakness for Treasuries.  In such cases, MBS don’t usually take as big of a hit, and that was true of today’s session.   

    If there was an overt catalyst for today’s run up in rates, it was the ISM Manufacturing data.  While it was only slightly stronger than expected, it arrested a 6 month decline that began with November’s ISM data.  Additionally, the components of the report were strong, including the employment component.  Investors pay extra attention to that on NFP week.  From there, the initial sell-off was seized upon as the cue to get in on the selling before corporate issuance took a broader toll.  Thus we find ourselves right back in the recent range.

    Article source: http://www.mortgagenewsdaily.com/mortgage_rates/blog/476581.aspx

    Office Lease Up (June 1) Lewis Brisbois Makes Temporary 215,000-SF Lease its Permanent HQs

    Lewis Brisbois Bisgaard Smith LLP has made the temporary space it hastily moved into back in December at U.S. Bank Tower its new permanent office.

    When a fire at an adjacent, uncder-construction apartment building forced the law firm out of 221 N. Figueroa St. at the end of 2014, it relocated to the U.S. Bank Tower at 633 W. 5th St. in downtown Los Angeles. At that time the law firm signed a temporary lease for one year, one of the largest office lease deals signed in the market during the fourth quarter.

    Now the city’s largest law firm has signed a new direct deal to remain in the building under a 15-year lease valued at $115 million. Lewis Brisbois will occupy nine floors, including contiguous floors 38 to 45 and the sixth floor as a conference room.

    U.S. Bank Tower is a 72-story, 1.43 million-square-foot, 5-Star office tower built in 1989 at the northeast corner of Fifth and Hope streets.

    Peter Johnston and John Eichler at Cushman Wakefield represented the landlord, OUE Ltd., a Singapore-based real estate owner, developer and operator with a real estate portfolio throughout Asia and the U.S. Avison Young principal and managing director Jonathan Larsen and associate Chandler Larsen represented the law firm in its new direct lease, and helped arrange the temporary short-term lease that enable the firm to relocate within five days of the fire.

    According to Avison Young, US Bank Tower is the tallest building in California and the 11th tallest in the U.S. Since acquiring the building in 2013, OUE has been in the process of completing a $50 million renovation of the property, which is now 82.6% occupied following the law firm’s lease. By Keith Dornin


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    Hogan Lovells Signs Major Lease in Downtown Denver

    Hogan Lovells LLP signed a 15-year lease for 70,000 square feet at 1601 Wewatta St., the new 10-story, 300,000-square-foot office building nearing completion in the Union Station part of Lower Downtown (LoDo) Denver.

    The lease, which will commence in 2016, includes the top two-and-a-half floors of the building being developed by a Hines-led joint venture that includes Denver-based Jordon Perlmutter Co. and the financial backing of institutional investors advised by J.P. Morgan Asset Management.

    The law firm joins the Colorado Athletic Club, which signed a lease earlier this year for 38,000 square feet on the second floor.

    Hogan Lovells’s current office is in One Tabor Center at 1200 Seventeenth Street. DTZ Executive Managing Director Doug Wulf represented the law firm in its new lease. Chris Phenicie with CBRE is the leasing agent for the building.

    “We have enjoyed being in one of downtown’s premier buildings and now we look forward to being an anchor tenant in 1601 Wewatta,” said Hogan Lovells Denver partner Craig Umbaugh.

    Designed by the Washington, D.C. office of HOK, the building will contain 283,000 square feet of office space and 17,000 square feet of street-level retail space. A four-level underground parking garage will accommodate 400 vehicles. The building will also feature 10-foot finished ceilings and several outdoor terraces. By Nina Thilert


    BDO USA Relocating Within Greensboro Corporate Center

    BDO USA LLP, the U.S. member of international public accountancy firm BDO International, signed an 11-year lease for 53,382 square feet within the Greensboro Corporate Center in McLean, VA.

    Known as Greensboro Corporate Center I, the 10-story office building was built in 2000 at 8401 Greensboro Dr. in Tysons Corner. The property totals 234,997 square feet and is anchored by The MITRE Corp. and BMC Software.

    BDO USA will relocate from Greensboro Corporate Center II to take the entire seventh and eighth floors and a portion of the ninth floor at Center I. The lease term will begin August 1, 2015.

    Yorke Allen and Robert VeShancey of JLL represented BDO USA in the transaction. By Christian Powell


    Greatbatch Leases 53,284 SF in Plano

    Greatbatch Inc., a medical device maker, signed a lease for 53,284 square feet of office space in a new building under construction at 5830 Granite Pky. in Plano, TX.

    The Granite Park V building will total 306,200 square feet in the Upper Tollway/West Plano submarket. Construction on the building began in September 2014 by Granite Properties Inc., with an expected delivery scheduled for November 2015.

    Greatbatch is expanding just two years after relocating from Buffalo, NY to Texas. The company will occupy the 11th and 12th floors of the 12-story office building.

    Sarah Owen, Jim Kirchhoff and Robert Jimenez with Granite Properties Inc., represented the landlord, while Andy Leatherman with JLL represented the tenant. This is the first signed lease at the new development, according to CoStar information. By Ben Harris


    Olshan Leases 50,000 SF on Avenue of the Americas

    Law firm Olshan Grundman Frome Rosenzweig Wolosky LLP signed a 15-year office lease for 50,000 square feet at 1325 Avenue of the Americas in Manhattan.

    Olshan will occupy the 15th and 16th floors of the 34-story, 814,892-square-foot building when its lease commences in the first quarter of 2016. The tenant will be relocating from 65 E. 55th St., where the firm has had its offices for 12 years.

    Robert Yaffa and Wayne Van Aken of DTZ represented the tenant. David Kleiner, Douglas Neye, Frank Doyle and Daniel Kollar with JLL represented the landlord, Paramount Group Inc. By Bleejay Innis


    Learning Tree Signs Herndon Deal

    Learning Tree, a provider of hands-on IT and management training, leased a total of 38,887 square feet at Three Dulles Tech Center in Herndon, VA. Located at 13650 Dulles Technology Dr., the 117,080-square-foot office building near Dulles Toll Rd. and Route 28.

    Josh Masi and Matt Bundy of Cushman Wakefield represented ownership, while Paul Darr of DTZ represented Learning Tree. By Walt Brown


    Castlight Health Converting Sublease to a Direct Lease, Expanding

    Castlight Health Inc. entered into a lease with an affiliate of Principal Financial Group for 36,000 square feet at 150 Spear St. in San Francisco in an office expansion. Approximately 13,000 square feet of this expansion space is currently occupied by the company under a sublease.

    The lease provides for phased commencement dates, with the first phase covering 30,000 square feet to occur July 1, 2015, and the remainder about eight months later. The lease is for six years with both portions terminating on the same date. By Mark Heschmeyer


    Dataminr Finds 31,000 SF on 32nd St.

    Information discovery company Dataminr has signed a 10-year, 30,720-square-foot lease at 6 E. 32nd St. in New York City.

    The TAMI company, which aggregates real time data from public sources for the finance, public, news, security and crisis management sectors, will relocate and expand from its current space at 99 Madison Ave. in Gramercy Park when it takes occupancy of the entire second and sixth floors in Murray Hill.

    Built in 1910, the 11-story, 173,600-square-foot office tower is located between Madison and Fifth Avenues in the Midtown South submarket. Asking rents in the building average $56 per square foot. Jason Vacker with Himmel + Meringoff Properties represented the landlord in-house. Matthew McBride of CBRE represented the tenant. By Justin Sumner


    Computer Credit Leases 30,000 SF in Winston-Salem

    Computer Credit Inc., a revenue collection agency for medical practices, signed a six-year lease for 30,000 square feet of office space at 470 W. Hanes Mill Rd. in Winston Salem, NC.

    The two-story, 60,000-square-foot office building was completed in 1985. It is owned by Twin City Properties Corp. based out of Kernersville, NC.

    Computer Credit Inc. will occupy the entire second floor when its lease commences on July 1, 2015. Other tenants there include Sarah Lee Corp and Monarch, while available space remains on the first floor.

    John Ruffin of Meridian Realty Group Inc. represented the tenant. Clarence Lambe, Jr. with Cameron Commercial represented the landlord. By Darrel Crawford


    EMC Leases 28,440 SF in San Francisco

    EMC Corp., an IT cloud computing firm, signed a lease for 28,440 square feet in the office building at 455 Market St. in San Francisco.

    The 22-story building totals 379,203 square feet in the South Financial District. The building was built in 1987 and is owned by USB Realty Investors. EMC’s lease will be for the entire fourth floor. Other tenants in the building include Ace Insurance and Wells Fargo.

    Janna Luce of Cresa represented EMC. David Duble and John Walsh of Cushman Wakefield represented the landlord. By John Walz


    Local Corp. Staying Local, Downsizes in Orange County

    Local Corp. amended its lease with The Irvine Co. LLC to replace its current space with new space nearby. Local will lease 16,209 square feet of space at 7525 Irvine Center Drive, Suite 200 in Irvine, CA effective July 1, 2015.

    The firm plans to take possession shortly after or concurrently with cessation of its current lease of its current 34,612-square-foot headquarters at 7555 Irvine Center Drive. The lease amendment provides for a term of 36 months.

    Colliers International represented Local in the lease negotiations. By Mark Heschmeyer

    Article source: http://www.costar.com/News/Article/Office-Lease-Up-June-1-Lewis-Brisbois-Makes-Temporary-215000-SF-Lease-its-Permanent-HQs/172071?ref=/News/Article/Office-Lease-Up-June-1-Lewis-Brisbois-Makes-Temporary-215000-SF-Lease-its-Permanent-HQs/172071&src=rss

    MBS Day Ahead: Action-Packed Week of Economic Data and Events

    Last week helped the month of May recover a few shreds of its dignity.  As hard as it is to believe, it was the first week in 2015 where each day’s closing levels were the same or better than the previous close.  Granted, it was only four days long due to the Memorial Day holiday, but still… that’s impressive, right? 

    Actually, it’s not that impressive.  Tuesday saw 10yr yields close at 2.135.  Wednesday closed at exactly the same levels, and Thursday wasn’t much better at 2.130.  It wasn’t until Friday’s ‘month-end’ session where bonds finally got a meaningful boost.  Bottom line, it wasn’t a market that was stampeding toward stronger levels with vim and vigor.  It was a market that was tentatively probing the edge of its recent trading range like a remorseful child poking his head across the threshold of the living room, wondering if he could come out of time-out and rejoin the family.

    Rest assured, when the parents call the child to announce the end of the time-out, we will all know it.  And it hasn’t happened yet.  All that having been said, it could happen this week, depending on the data. 

    The biggest-ticket events don’t start until Wednesday with the ADP data in the morning, ECB Announcement and press conference around the same time, and ISM services data at 10am.    Then of course, there’s Friday’s NFP numbers, where a solid result would further solidify a late 2015 rate hike (although an exceptionally weak result might call it into question).  Even today, the data is meaty enough to get things off to a fast start, with ISM Manufacturing being the highlight at 10am.  Whatever the case, whereas last week was timid, this week stands every chance to be anything but.

    Article source: http://www.mortgagenewsdaily.com/mortgage_rates/blog/476375.aspx

    CFPB Developments Including Targeting Provident for Broker Business Done Years Ago

    When I grow up I want to be wealthy. And thanks to this list of the wealthiest zip codes in America,
    I know just where to move. (Interesting to compare those versus states
    with no state income tax.) Unfortunately it doesn’t measure wealth based
    on friends and family and the chance to work in this business – many of
    us would be plenty rich.

    Remember when Wells exited wholesale? The rumor was that basically that it couldn’t guarantee all of its brokers complied with the avalanche of lender-accountable rules and regulations coming into the industry? Last week word broke that Provident Funding could be fined for exactly the same thing.
    And this was back between 2006 and 2011! “Federal regulators on
    Thursday sued a major mortgage lender, alleging that the company
    discriminated against African-American and Hispanic borrowers by
    overcharging them hundreds of dollars in broker fees.”

    Yes,
    the Consumer Financial Protection Bureau and the Justice Department
    have asked a federal judge to approve a $9 million settlement fund to
    compensate borrowers
    . The lender, Provident Funding Associates, says it
    complied with fair lending laws, but has agreed to settle the case and
    pay the amount. The
    announcement reminded many wholesalers that unfortunately the industry
    is being governed, to a great degree, by enforcement actions rather than
    actual regulations.
    (Like motorists knowing the speed limit from the citations given rather
    than the posted limit.) And critics pointed out that what is
    particularly bad about this is that the period covered was several years
    ago – pretty much prior to the CFPB even being in existence.

    While we’re on the CFPB, the president of the American Land Title Association, Diane Evans, testified before Congress regarding the upcoming TRID changes.
    Evans testimony highlights two ways the CFPB can help title companies
    implement TRID which include, allowing the title and settlement industry
    to disclose the price of title insurance accurately to consumers on the
    new Closing Disclosure and the CFPB should develop and publicize a way
    to offer implementation support during a hold-harmless period from
    August 1st
    through the end of the year. Evans stated that “complying with this
    regulation will require more than simply updating our systems for two
    new disclosure forms. Getting this rule correct requires a paradigm
    shift in the way real estate settlements occur in this country.” To read
    the testimony, click here.

    As a reminder recently the CFPB issued a final interpretive rule on how to provide mortgage applicants with a list of local homeownership counseling organizations.
    The interpretive rule restates guidance the CFPB issued in 2013, and
    provides further guidance for lenders who are building their own lists
    of housing counselors. The rule also includes guidance on the
    qualifications for providing high-cost mortgage counseling and for
    lender participation in such counseling.

    Director
    Richard Cordray states in his introductory letter, “Buying a home is
    often the largest financial decision in a consumer’s lifetime, and we
    want to ensure that consumers can access the independent and informed
    advice they deserve before making that decision.” “Housing counselors are a crucial source of that helpful advice. We will continue to work to improve the home-buying experience for consumers, and the April 15th interpretive rule will help industry comply with these important protections.”

    Housing
    counselors can provide advice on buying a home, renting, defaults,
    foreclosures, and credit issues. Advice from housing counselors can be
    provided at little or no cost to consumers. The Dodd-Frank Wall Street
    Reform and Consumer Protection Act included a requirement that mortgage
    lenders provide applicants with a list of local housing counselors.
    Consumers will receive the list shortly after they apply for a mortgage
    so they know where to get help when deciding what loan is best for them.
    Lenders may fulfill the requirement by using CFPB-developed housing
    counseling lists, which are available through an online tool the Bureau
    created in 2013, or by generating their own lists using the same
    Department of Housing and Urban Development (HUD) data that the CFPB
    uses to build its lists.

    Lenders
    choosing to build their own lists can look to the interpretive rule for
    instructions. The interpretive rule restates the detailed guidance from
    2013. It also includes new instructions about: how to provide
    applicants abroad with homeownership counseling lists; permissible
    geolocation tools; combining the homeownership counseling list with
    other disclosures; use of a consumer’s mailing address to provide the
    list; and high-cost mortgage counseling qualifications and lender
    participation in such counseling. The online tool can be accessed here. 

    Moving on, The CFPB’s release of these chapters signals that it has begun, or will shortly begin, intensive examiner training on the rule. (No, no sign of a delay, or grace period afterward, at this point.) The narrative portion of the new TILA chapter
    specific to the TRID rule runs from page 35 through page 50, and the
    TILA examination procedures specific to the TRID rule run from page 4
    through page 42.  The narrative portion of the new RESPA chapter
    specific to the TRID rule is on page 5, and, as discussed above, the
    RESPA examination procedures include no instructions specific to the
    TRID rule.

    And
    then a few weeks ago we had the new toolkit that guides consumers
    through the process of shopping for a mortgage and buying a house.
    Developed as part of the CFPB’s, “Know Before You Owe” mortgage
    initiative, the toolkit was designed to help consumers take full
    advantage of the new Loan Estimate and Closing Disclosure forms that
    lenders are required to begin providing in August. Creditors must provide the toolkit to mortgage applicants starting August 1 as a part of the application process, and
    other industry participants, including real estate professionals, are
    encouraged to provide it to potential homebuyers. The toolkit is
    designed to replace HUD’s existing booklet that creditors currently must
    provide to mortgage applicants.

    The
    toolkit provides a step-by-step guide to help consumers understand the
    nature and costs of real estate settlement services, define what
    affordable means to them, and find their best mortgage. The toolkit
    features interactive worksheets and checklists, conversation starters
    for discussions between consumers and lenders, and research tips to help
    consumers seek out and find important information.

    The CFPB is also providing an electronic version
    complete with fillable text fields and interactive check boxes so that
    consumers can save and print their progress as they work through the
    toolkit. The electronic version meets federal accessibility standards to
    ensure that all consumers, including those with disabilities, can use
    the resource. The CFPB encourages lenders to keep this level of
    accessibility when delivering the PDF to consumers.

    Of course lenders and investors must react. For example, Plaza has introduced the new TILA-RESPA resource page
    on its website which can be located under “Tools” in the right-hand
    navigation bar. You will find a helpful “Old/New Comparison” document
    that clearly outlines the changes ahead, as well as CFPB resources and
    other tools and information. As training materials are developed
    continued information will be added.

    The National Association of Mortgage Bankers (NAMB)
    endorsed the Medical Debt Relief Act of 2015, which has been recently
    introduced by two congressmen. This bill would modify the Fair Debt
    Collection Practices Act to allow relief for patients and consumers and
    protect them from unfair credit reporting practices due to medical
    bills. To read the Medical Debt Relief Act of 2015 endorsement letter,
    click here.

    The U.S. Mortgage Insurers (USMI)
    wrote a letter to members of the Senate Banking Committee which
    welcomed efforts to increase the dependence on private capital in
    housing finance and supports Section 706, which asks for the GSEs to
    take part in risk sharing transactions. Section 706 should lower the
    exposure and costs for enterprises and taxpayer, as well as borrowers.
    The promotion of greater up front risk sharing will allow for a more
    stable housing finance system. Click here to read the letter.

    The American Land Title Association (ALTA) submitted
    a letter to the New York Times Editorial Board to respond to an article
    that did not inform readers about the benefits of title insurance. In
    the letter, ALTA called out that title insurance protects the
    homeowner’s financial investment in their property if a claim arises and
    the costs for protection are minimal. For example, an owner’s title
    insurance policy for a $500,000 home is about $2,000, so over the
    average time of home ownership, this equates to $154 annually or $13 per
    month. The cost for title insurance has decreased 6.2 percent since
    2003.The title process has resulted in many agents collecting $4.8
    billion in back income taxes and recuperating $325 million in unpaid
    child support every year.

    And
    don’t forget that in late April Federal agencies have promulgated a
    final rule of 128 pages that implements minimum requirements for state
    registration and supervision of appraisal management companies (AMCs).
    The rule permits states to elect to register and supervise AMCs, as
    defined under the rule but does not require states to institute an AMC
    registration and supervision program. Any non-federally regulated AMC is
    barred from providing appraisal management services for federally
    related transactions in states that do not create a regulatory structure
    after 36 months from the effective date of the final rule. The rule
    will mandate states to apply certain minimum requirements in the
    registration and supervision of AMCs. The effective date for the rule
    will be 60 days after it’s published in the Federal Register.

    Yes,
    another week of news is ahead of us. The fun never ends! We’re off to a
    roaring start today with Personal Income and Consumption (+.4%,
    spending was unchanged), a series of PCE inflation numbers (Personal
    Consumption Expenditures) showed inflation is tame with core year over
    year inflation only +1.3%; later is Construction Spending, and some
    Institute of Supply Management (ISM) figures. Tomorrow we have the
    second-tier Factory Orders number. Wednesday is some ADP figures
    measuring private payrolls, as well as the Trade Balance numbers. (Trade
    “imbalance” is more appropriate.) We also have the Federal Reserve
    releasing its Beige Book. On the 4th
    will be Nonfarm Productivity, Unit Labor Costs, and Initial Jobless
    Claims. Friday we’ll have the numbers that seem to captivate the press:
    Nonfarm Payrolls, the Unemployment Rate, the Underemployment Rate, and
    Hourly Earnings – that kind of thing.

    For anyone wondering if they should have locked, or sold that pool of loans, Friday, we closed the 10-year at 2.10% and this morning we’re sitting around 2.11% with agency MBS prices worse a tad.

    Jobs and Announcements

    A well-capitalized, national mortgage lender based in Southern California is looking for an Executive Level Credit Risk Director
    to work from its headquarters. With over 15 years in the mortgage
    industry this well established lender is seeking an individual to lead
    its credit risk/underwriting team, consisting of 3 direct reports,
    managing teams of Underwriters, as well as continue to build policy and
    procedure in all channels within its current structure. Interested
    parties can send confidential resumes to me at rchrisman@robchrisman. com. (Please specify the opportunity.)

    A few thousand miles away on the correspondent side, AmeriHome Mortgage is looking for an experienced, proven high performing correspondent sales professional for their North Central Region
    (CO, IA, KS, MO, MT, NE, ND, SD, and WY). If you have the experience
    and relationships in this market and are interested in joining a strong
    and growing company please contact Chase Wixom or submit your resume to jobs@amerihome. com

    On the ops side a 20 year old company in the northeast is looking for an experienced Chief Compliance Officer.
    The company is a Ginnie, Fannie, and Freddie approved lender, issuer
    and servicer with a large servicing portfolio. 100% of all loans are
    servicing retained and the company is currently funding $1B per month in
    loan originations through correspondent, third party origination and
    retail channels. If you are interested please forward your confidential
    resume to me at rchrisman@robchrisman. com. (Please specify the opportunity.)

    Article source: http://www.mortgagenewsdaily.com/channels/pipelinepress/06012015-provident-funding.aspx

    Construction Spending Tops $1 Trillion

    Total spending on construction ticked up moderately in
    April, rising to a seasonally adjusted annual rate of $1,006.1 billion the U.S.
    Census Bureau announced today.  The
    number is a 2.2 percent increase over the revised (from $966.6 billion) March
    estimate of $984.0 billion and 4.8 percent higher than a spending rate of
    $960.4 billion in April 2014.

    Total residential spending was at a rate of $359.4 billion,
    compared to $357.2 billion in March, a 0.6 percent gain but was down 1.8 percent
    from the $365.8 billion pace a year earlier.

    On a non-seasonally adjusted basis total spending in April
    was estimated at $80.9 billion, $29.6 billion of which was for residential
    construction.  Year-to-date spending
    through the end of April was $288.7 billion total and $105.0 billion for
    residential construction, gains of 4.1 and 0.6 percent respectively.

    Private sector construction was at a seasonally adjusted
    annual rate of $725.2 billion, up 1.8 percent from March and 5.3 percent from
    April 2014.  Private sector construction
    in March, originally estimated at a rate of $702.4 billion, was revised upward to
    $725.2
    billion.

    Residential construction increased 0.6 percent
    month-over-month but was down 2.1 percent year-over-year to $353.1 billion.  Single family construction was up 1.6 percent
    from March and 9.2 percent from a year earlier while multi-family spending, at
    a rate of $51.4 billion, gained 3.1 percent and 24.6 percent respectively.

    On a non-seasonally adjusted basis private sector construction
    spending was estimated at $59.3 billion and year to date at $214.4 billion, a
    4.5 percent increase from the same point in 2014.  Non-seasonally adjusted residential spending
    was $29.1 billion for the month and $103.2 billion for the year-to-date an
    increase of 0.3 percent.

    Public sector spending was at a rate of $280.9 billion in
    April, a 3.3 percent increase from March and 3.5 percent from a year
    earlier.  Residential spending, usually
    negligible in the public sector was up 3.3 percent in April to 6.3 billion and
    26.6 percent higher year-over-year.  On a
    non-seasonally adjusted basis the year-to-date number, $1.83 billion, was 21.2
    percent above spending during the same period last year.

    Article source: http://www.mortgagenewsdaily.com/06012015_construction_spending.asp