Lou Holtz observed, "Never tell your problems to anyone....80% don't care and the other 20% are glad you have them." People who don’t understand economics are often big fans of raising the minimum wage – but it can lead to problems and unintended consequences. Want a burger? Wendy’s announced that self-serve kiosks will be made available across its 6,000-plus fast food restaurants in the second half of this year. The kiosks will allow diners to order and pay for their food without the need for human interaction. The company will allow each franchise to decide whether or not to use the laborsaving technology, and follows McDonald’s which has also been testing similar kiosks. What’s a high school kid to do?

Let's forget about the F&F staff trimming and posturing "just in case" the powers-that-be decide there will only be one Agency going forward, let's see what's happening now.

Freddie Mac Loan Advisor Suite, created to "drive efficiency, reliability, usability and certainty," continues to move ahead in phases of deployment. Yesterday, for example, Freddie deployed the Loan Advisor Suite portal: the new Loan Product Advisor and the new look and feel for Loan Quality Advisor and Loan Coverage Advisor, and later this summer, the new tools: Loan Collateral Advisor, Loan Closing Advisor, and Business Intelligence." Freddie plans on customizing the modules to lender's specific business goals "and craft a plan to help you successfully integrate Loan Advisor Suite into your work stream to achieve those goals (using) Loan Collateral Advisor, Loan Closing Advisor and Business Intelligence." If you have questions, contact your Freddie Mac representative or learn more by visiting our brand new webpages devoted toLoan Advisor Suite.

Fannie Mae has updated its guidelines for Multiple Financed Properties where borrower is financing a second home or investment property and has additional financed properties. Sun West Mortgage Company is aligning its guidelines for Multiple Financed Properties as per Fannie Mae announcement SEL 2016-03. The revised policy is effective for loan submissions on or after 06/30/2016. The updated guidelines can be accessed through its website.

To improve transparency and to help clients better understand how a borrower's credit is reviewed during the manual underwriting process, Sun West has updated its manual underwriting guidelines specifically for the review of a borrower's credit. The updated guidelines include additional information on how various risk factors associated with a borrower's credit are analyzed during a manual underwriting review. To access the updated guidelines, please click  here.

PennyMac is aligning with the updates announced by Fannie Mae in SEL 2016-04 and 2016-05.

During the weekend of July 23, Fannie Mae will implement Release 22.0, which includes the changes and enhancements for the Asset Management Network (AMN)/HomeSaver SolutionsTM Network (HSSN) application. This release includes changes to the following functionality: HSSN General Case -- Uploading PDF files, HSSN Mortgage Release (Deed in Lieu) and HSSN Short Sale. To implement this release, AMN/HSSN will not be available for processing from 7 a.m. ET on July 23, until 7 a.m. ET on July 24. Please read the Release Notes for more details.

Franklin American Mortgage Company suspended its Conventional Non-Conforming Adjustable Rate product until further notice. FAMC stopped accepting locks on Friday July 8th. Any unexpired locks will be honored, however relocks and lock extensions will not be allowed.

Plaza Home Mortgage issued an important reminder for a Home Possible loan.  As announced on 5/10/16, all Home Possible loans funded after 6/10/16 require Mortgage Insurance coverage per Freddie Mac Bulletin 2015-21.  Loans that have Lender Paid Mortgage Insurance locked at lower levels must be updated and have the LPMI price adjustment corrected to reflect the new coverage and rate (only the LPMI price adjustment will need to be updated).

Wells Fargo is temporarily removing its Prior Approval underwriting option on conventional Conforming Loans for Sellers that have delegated underwriting authority (this change does not affect Loans that require Wells Fargo underwriting, per the Wells Fargo Funding Seller Guide). As an alternative, Wells Fargo Funding will accept conventional Conforming Loans underwritten by properly licensed contract and vendor-supplied underwriters and delivered under your delegated underwriting authority.  Also noted, effective July 1, 2016, Rels Valuation is changing its name to CoreLogic Valuation Solutions. Wells is working to update its systems and materials accordingly. In the meantime, there are no changes to your ordering or delivery processes for Wells Fargo Funding Loans as a result of Rels Valuation's new name.

Turning to the secondary markets, since they pretty much determine rates in the primary markets, the MBA helped spread the word that the FHFA recently released two documents concerning the credit risk transfer programs undertaken to date by Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac. First came a progress report on risk transfer efforts since the start of the program and then a Request for Input on the progress of the programs, including FHFA's framework for evaluating credit risk transfer mechanisms.

As an example of news about the FHFA Single Security, Freddie Mac notified the industry that, "We have completed joint system-to-system testing with Common Securitization Solutions (CSS) as preparation for using their Common Securitization Platform for a range of activities related to Freddie Mac Participation Certificates (PC) and Giant PC issuance." The Single Security is expected to go into effect in late 2018.

There is a lot of talk about the FHFA's working toward a common securitization platform for Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac, and a single security. Remember that they are different! This comes on the heels of several actions taken by FHFA to move forward on a variety of issues. Not all have been met without some skepticism. But by and large, the overseer of Fannie and Freddie is moving ahead. A detailed look at a Common Securitization Platform identified a plausible schedule that would see a single GSE security sometime in 2018. Originators should know that the single security is a joint initiative to develop a single mortgage-backed security that will be issued by the GSEs to finance fixed-rate mortgage loans on single family homes - and that it should help prices for borrowers.

And who is buying non-performing loans? Adam Tempkin with Bloomberg scribes, "A legal entity owned by Lone Star Funds bought the most non-performing loans (NPLs) from Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac for the period 8/1/2015 through 5/31/2016, according to the first NPL sales report from the Federal Housing Finance Agency (FHFA). LSF9 Mortgage Holdings, overseen by Lone Star Funds, bought 9 pools of loans from the GSEs with an unpaid balance (UPB) of $2.02 billion at settlement date; this equals 9,750 loans, or 23.4% of total number of NPLs sold."

NPL sales reduce the number of severely delinquent loans in the GSEs' portfolios and the rules are subject to FHFA requirements that encourage NPL buyers to prioritize outcomes for borrowers other than foreclosure, FHFA wrote. It isn't small potatoes: through May 2016, GSEs sold 41,649 NPLs with aggregate UPB of $8.5 billion, and loans included in NPL sales had an average delinquency of 3.4 years and an average current LTV ratio of 98%, not including capitalized arrearages.

Pretium Mortgage Credit Partners I Loan Acquisition, an entity affiliated with Pretium Partners, were second-largest NPL buyer taking down 9 pools of loans with UPB of $1.48b at settlement

date; 7,571 loans, or 18.2% of total loan count sold. Coming in 3rd place was GCAT Management Services 2015-13, affiliated with Angelo Gordon. 4th on the podium was MTGLQ Investors, affiliated with Goldman Sachs. Runner-up buyers included Rushmore Loan Management Services, New Residential, and Bayview.

Shifting our collective gaze to the bond markets, recall that Friday we closed the 10-year at a yield of 1.37%. We began yesterday with it 1.40%, and it closed at 1.43% - worse in price by .625. The 5-year T-note, arguably a better proxy for MBS prices, worsened .375. The good news, however, is that agency MBS prices did better than Treasury market, and "tightened." In fact, MBS prices were largely impervious to the treasury market tumble with FN30 3% confined to less than a .125 range.

Not that they always move in the opposite direction, but stocks rallied. The S&P 500 hit an all-time high of 2,143.2. Since investors view stocks as riskier than bonds, this is known as "risk on." Perhaps it was instigated by Kansas City Fed President Esther George saying that rates are currently too low given the economy's recent progress.

For news today we'll have a raft of Fed speakers. We'll also have, at 10AM EDT, the JOLTS job openings for May along with May wholesale inventories and sales. The Treasury will auction $45 billion in 1-month bills at 11:30AM EDT and followed, at 1PM EDT, by the second leg of this week's mini-refunding when $20 billion reopened 10-year notes are sold. Until all that happens the 10-year is currently at 1.47% and agency MBS prices worse about .125.

Jobs and Announcements

In company news, Roostify, a provider of automated mortgage transaction technology, announced that it has completed an integration with DocMagic, "a leading provider of fully-compliant loan document solutions. The integration means consumers can now access, review and sign all initial disclosure documents from within Roostify's platform when they apply - either on the web or on a mobile device. Contact Scott Stein, VP of Sales, to learn more."

Out West, at Sierra Pacific Mortgage, they believe sharing knowledge is a key to success. Sierra Pacific's monthly Market Power Webinar this month will be led by Douglas Duncan, Fannie Mae's senior vice president and chief economist. He is responsible for providing all forecasts and analysis on the economy, housing, and mortgage markets for Fannie Mae. Register today for the free webinar hosted on July 14th at 10:00 am PDT.  

In correspondent job news, Impac Mortgage Corp. is expanding its Correspondent division and is looking for a seasoned, ambitious, entrepreneurial Account Executive for the Mid/South Atlantic territory (VA, WV, NC, SC, KY, TN). AEs can sell both Delegated and Non Delegated correspondents a full product line, including an innovative non QM line, FHA, VA, and Conventional. Impac Mortgage Correspondent is a top mortgage lender and warehouse capital provider working with mortgage bankers, community banks, regional banks and credit unions in 48 states. If you are looking for an exciting opportunity with boundless earning potential, email your resume to Rick Cardillo or have a confidential conversation (214-762-3772). 

And MGIC is "seeking an ambitious sales professional to be a part of our dynamic Sales team in the Greater Utah Market. As an Account Manager, you will develop and maintain strong, long-lasting client relationships as well as growbusiness by identifying new business opportunities. The ideal candidate must have a college degree, strong presentation and communication skills, and the ability to travel with occasional overnight. This person will report directly to Dean Dardzinski, VP & Managing Director. If you are a self-motivated, entrepreneurial spirit and experienced sales professional, then MGIC may be the right fit for you!" Please send your resume to Nancy Vang-Lee, Talent Acquisition Partner.

Founded in 2008, and licensed in 48 states, New Penn Financial, a Shellpoint Partners company, and 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. Our Mission is to exceed the expectations of our residential mortgage borrowers and business partners through superior service, simple processes, and effective communications. New Penn Financial is sourcing a strong, experienced sales leader for our Midwest TPO Sales channel. If you also believe in this mission and expect this and more from your employer, please email your resume to Chris Nielson, SVP - TPO East Division Manager, for more information.

And Lakeview Loan Servicing, LLC continues to significantly expand its Consumer Direct and Wholesale operations staff in both Fort Washington, PA and Miami, FL. A broad array of opportunities includes team leadership positions, loan processing, underwriting and closing. Lakeview is a Top 10 residential loan servicer managed by Bayview Asset Management, LLC, which is minority-owned by affiliates of The Blackstone Group, L.P. (NYSE: BX) and has assets under management of approximately $9.4B as of March 31, 2016. Please submit resumes to Careers@lakeviewloanservicing. com.

Congrats to Nancy Corsiglia, Ginnie Mae's new EVP and Chief Operating Officer, reporting to President Ted Tozer. "Corsiglia will administer Ginnie Mae's $1.7 trillion Mortgage-Backed Securities (MBS) and Real Estate Mortgage Investment Conduit (REMIC) programs. She will also be responsible for managing Ginnie Mae's daily operations, including all MBS operations, counterparty relationships, contracting, budget and legislative initiatives, and overall risk management."

On the flip side, Bank of America will close a consumer lending center in Hillsboro, Oregon, which has 102 employees. BofA informed employees last Wednesday that their jobs would end by September. The consumer lending office, of which BofA has over 200 around the nation, deals in home mortgages and home equity lines of credit. Some employees worked in telephone and internet sales, others in loan "fulfillment."