In lending we should all continue to champion and applaud the individuals and companies that are making a difference in our quest for equality, especially when it comes to women and minorities. In law firms - a similar occupation - women over 40 make up 40 percent of lawyers at but women over 50 only make up only 27 percent. That phenomenon is the focus of the American Bar Association’s Long-Term Careers for Women in Law initiative. "If women are leaving because they're just tired of having fought for all these years and still not being treated how they perceive to be fairly and equally with men, that's a problem we need to address," said ABA President Hilarie Bass.

Upcoming Events

Non-disclosure disputes are the most common real estate legal disputes in California. Thus, it's imperative for the real estate community to understand disclosure laws, principles, and practices. On Tuesday November 14th, the Law Offices of Peter N. Brewer will be producing a free webinar about real estate disclosures in California. Real estate attorney Adam L. Pedersen will discuss the real estate disclosure laws, as well as the processes for prosecuting and for defending against non-disclosure actions.

If you're in Kansas next week on the 16th, come to the Mortgage Bankers of Greater Kansas City's membership luncheon and say hi - I'll be there.

On Thursday 11/16 from 2-3 ET Mortgage Capital Trading, Inc. (MCT) will be holding a complimentary educational webinar discussing many important changes to the Financial Industry Regulatory Authority (FINRA) Mark to Market Rule. The webinar, hosted by the Community Mortgage Lenders of America (CMLA), will guide lenders through all the mandated rule changes in advance of the required implementation date of June 25, 2018. Lenders will leave the webinar with a good understanding of the rule details, how it will affect their businesses, and how to prepare for it. (FINRA Regulatory Notice 16-31 establishes amendments to Rule 4210 that will change margin requirements for Covered Agency Transactions, including the TBA transactions. FINRA members will be required to collect daily MTM margin from all counterparties on these transactions under certain circumstances.)

Register for the MMLA's Southeast Chapter's HR panel on how to recruit, train and retain Millennials on Thursday, November 16th.

MBA Education is busy. There's a webinar on November 15th covering recent changes to the National Institute of Standards and Technology (NIST) guidelines for digital identities. These new guidelines revise password security recommendations and propose changes to standards and best practices for organizations that use digital identity services.  The panel of security experts, including representatives from NIST and the U.S. Department of Homeland Security, will review the changes and discuss the impact of the requirements on mortgage lenders. And in San Antonio the MBA will have its Accounting and Financial Management Conference from November 13-15.

People like lists. And residential lenders also like to know what other lenders are thinking. After polling its lender members, The Mortgage Collaborative covered both with a piece titled, "As 2018 Approaches, Here's What's Most Important to Mortgage Lenders." The list is worth a gander since hearing about the usual "increased technology" and "increasing efficiency" - has, frankly, although important, grown somewhat stale. It is good to see things like "file flow" and "benchmarking" on our collective minds.

Disaster News: Lenders and Investors React

Fannie Mae published Lender Letter LL-2017-09 to provide policy guidance for loans secured by properties located in a Federal Emergency Management Administration (FEMA) Declared Disaster Area eligible for Individual Assistance.

In response to Wildfires in California and in response to a Federal Disaster Declaration, M&T Bank will enforce the Disaster re-inspection Policy for all properties located in the affected counties: Butte, Lake, Mendocino, Napa, Nevada, Orange, Sonoma and Yuba.

The FHA issued a waiver covering all municipalities in Puerto Rico impacted by Hurricane Maria, allowing damage inspections to be conducted beginning November 9, 2017. This waiver is in addition to the waiver issued by FHA on October 24, 2017, of its policy on the time frame for completing the inspection of properties prior to closing, or submitting the mortgage for FHA insurance endorsement in the Presidentially-Declared Major Disaster Areas (PDMDAs) in municipalities in Puerto Rico impacted by Maria.

For mortgages in process secured by properties in a PDMDA that have not closed or are pending endorsement, mortgagees must follow the guidance contained in the Single Family Housing Policy Handbook 4000.1 (SF Handbook) Section II.A.7.c, Inspection and Repair Escrow Requirements for Mortgages.

Freddie and Fannie

Freddie Mac had net income and "Comprehensive Income" of $4.7 billion in the 3rd quarter, and hit $1 trillion of mortgages. Freddie Mac posted strong Q3 earnings nearly tripling its net income in Q2. Fannie Mae was no slouch in the 3rd quarter, and it saw $3 billion added to its balance sheet.

During the weekend of Nov. 18, Desktop Underwriter (DU) 10.0 and 10.1 will be updated to underwrite loan casefiles when a borrower has placed a freeze on their credit report at only one of the three credit repositories. This change will apply to DU 10.0 and 10.1 loan casefiles submitted or resubmitted to DU on or after the weekend of Nov. 18. When credit is frozen at one of the three repositories, the loan casefile will be underwritten using the credit data received from the other repositories, and DU will issue a new Potential Red Flag message. Review the release notes for more information.

Don't forget that the FHFA announced its decision to add a preferred language question to the new Uniform Residential Loan Application (URLA). This question will enable borrowers who prefer to communicate in a language other than English to identify that language.  It also provides clear disclosures that the mortgage transaction is likely to be conducted in English and that language resources may not be available. Lenders may begin using the redesigned URLA in July 2019, but use of the redesigned form will not be mandatory for Fannie Mae/Freddie Mac loans until February 2020.

Orion Lending introduced FUEL, a new enhancement to its existing product line up.  ORION FUEL is a premium priced product, available on select FHA, VA Fannie Mae & Freddie Mac Products down to a 680 FICO.

As clarification to Wells Fargo Funding's Newsflash C17-048bp, dated September 25, 2017, Sellers are reminded they represent and warranty compliance with Freddie Mac's selling program. This includes adherence to the Uniform Closing Dataset (UCD) mandate to submit UCD XML files to Freddie Mac's collection solution for all bifurcation Loans with Notes dated on or after September 25, 2017.

For delegated conventional Conforming, FHA and VA Loans, Wells Fargo Funding removed its documentation overlay for tax transcripts when all income used to decision a Loan is made up exclusively of wage earner income reported on a W-2 and/or fixed income reported on a 1099, unless required by the AUS.

Fannie Mae has updated the Cash Remittance System (CRS) remittance codes. These updates streamline the remittance process, enable transactions to be reported under unique remittance codes, reduce the commingling of funds within a single code, and more. Visit the CRS page to view the updated CRS User Guide, which contains all updated codes, their definitions, and purposes.

Capital Markets

Once again volatility in the bond market was muted. U.S. Treasuries ended Thursday on a mixed note as the long bond posted a modest loss while the 2-yr note recorded a slim gain. Any volatility was attributed to Congress where differences between the Senate tax plan and the House version are in the press. For example, the Senate plan would delay the implementation of the corporate tax cut until 2019. We did have a strong $15 billion 30-yr bond auction, so investors are still very interested in our fixed-income securities. The Senate Banking Committee plans to hold a confirmation hearing for Federal Reserve Chairman nominee Jay Powell on November 28.

For Thursday's session the new 10-year note worsened .125 to yield 2.33% at the end of the day. The 5-year and agency MBS prices were down/worse slightly - a few ticks.

In government news, yesterday Senate Republicans released their version of a tax overhaul plan while House Republicans on the Committee on Ways and Means advanced their reform bill that was initially announced last week to the House floor. The differences in the two versions must be reconciled to create one uniform plan to pass through Congress

Today the U.S. government is closed but banks are open. The Internal Revenue Service and Social Security Administration Service Centers are both closed although today is considered a specific business day for purposes of Closing Disclosure delivery/waiting period and rescission timeline calculations; however, Saturday, November 11 will NOT be considered a specific business day due to the holiday. Please note that this change may impact Closing Disclosure deliveries/waiting periods and the rescission timeline calculations.

We start the day with rates a shade higher versus yesterday ("more sellers than buyers"): the 10-year is yielding 2.37% and agency MBS prices are worse about .125. There is only minor scheduled economic news in the form of the preliminary November Michigan Sentiment Index.

Promotions and Products

"Have you heard? Mr. Cooper Correspondent announced new credit offerings and product solutions - including FICO score reductions for government products (FHA, VA and USDA Standard and FHA Streamline). Correspondents can now also take advantage the new Conventional HPML and FHA Rebuttable Presumption loan offerings.  Mr. Cooper's Correspondent team no longer requires government insuring certificates, and tax transcripts will only be required for self-employment and rental income sources.  Lastly, Fraud Guard will no longer be required on FHA Streamline and VA IRRRLs.  Read all the details in the latest Seller Guide Update. Special thanks to all our clients, friends, and partners who visited the Mr. Cooper MBA Client Reception and met with us in Denver, CO! We hope you had as much fun as we did, and we always value an opportunity to speak with you directly. If you have any questions, contact your region's Account Executive."

For the fifth consecutive year, Loan Vision will be a gold sponsor of the Mortgage Bankers Association's Accounting and Financial Management Conference hosted in San Antonio, Texas on November 13-15, 2017. "This year, we're excited for the opportunity to dive in and show lenders how we can help reduce business expense and increase profit through greater control and insight into exactly how and where their dollars are being used." said Carl Wooloff, Business Development Manager at Loan Vision. In addition to their sponsorship, the Loan Vision team will also be booking private meetings with attendees and hosting two round table discussions on trending industry topics, including leakage management and preparation for 2018. To schedule some time to meet with the team, please contact Carl Wooloff.