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Author Archives: Brian Honea

Brian Honea's writing and editing career spans nearly two decades across many forms of media. He served as sports editor for two suburban newspaper chains in the DFW area and has freelanced for such publications as the Yahoo! Contributor Network, Dallas Home Improvement magazine, and the Dallas Morning News. He has written four non-fiction sports books, the latest of which, The Life of Coach Chuck Curtis, was published by the TCU Press in December 2014. A lifelong Texan, Brian received his master's degree from Amberton University in Garland.

Foreclosure Completions, Starts on GSE Loans Continue Steady Decline

Both foreclosure completions and foreclosure starts on Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac loans continued their steady decline in the third quarter, according to the Federal Housing Finance Agency (FHFA)'s Q3 Foreclosure Prevention Report released Monday. The GSEs completed 39,100 foreclosures in Q3, down 9 percent from the 43,000 that were completed in Q2, according to the report.

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Colorado AG Files Civil Suits Against Two Law Firms For Foreclosure Fraud

Colorado Attorney General John Suthers announced his office has filed civil lawsuits against two Colorado foreclosure law firms and their affiliated title companies, accusing them of inflating foreclosure costs for homeowners. The civil suits filed against the Hopp firms and the Vaden firm are the latest actions taken in an ongoing investigation by the Colorado AG to cut down on fraud in the foreclosure process.

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Leading Economic Indicators Grow For Third Consecutive Month

A popular index gauging leading U.S. economic indicators grew for a third straight month in November, signaling moderate economic growth as the year closes out. The Conference Board's Leading Economic Index (LEI) increased 0.6 percent in November to 105.5, the group reported. Released monthly, the index gauges the potential for future economic growth based on 10 leading components, including homebuilding permits, weekly initial unemployment claims, and average consumer expectations for business conditions.

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Florida Man Pleads Guilty to Mortgage Loan Mod Scam

A Florida man pleaded guilty to fraud charges in connection with a home loan modification scam that targeted distressed borrowers, according to an announcement from Christy Romero, Special Inspector General for the Troubled Asset Relief Program (SIGTARP) and Stephen R. Wigginton, U.S. Attorney for the Southern District of Illinois.

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Federal Agencies Announce Thresholds to Classify Small, Intermediate Small Institutions

Federal bank regulatory agencies have announced the newly-adjusted asset-size thresholds that will be used to define financial institutions under Community Reinvestment Act (CRA) regulations. According to a press release from the Federal Reserve Board, the CRA requires the thresholds to be adjusted annually in order to define institutions as either small banks, small savings associations, intermediate small banks, or intermediate small savings associations for CRA examinations. These asset-size classifications determine how institutions are evaluated under different CRA examination procedures, and determine whether or not financial institutions are subject to certain reporting requirements; those that are classified small or intermediate small are not subject to the same reporting requirements as large financial institutions.

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Existing-Home Sales Decline Despite Low Interest Rates

Sales of pre-owned homes stalled out in November, plunging to their slowest pace in half a year only one month after hitting a 2014 high. Despite the stumble, home resales in November were still up 2.1 percent from year-ago levels, making it just the second month in 2014 to see sales rise year-over-year. It's been a year of starts and stops for home sales, which have struggled under the weight of rising mortgage rates (a trend that has reversed in recent months), a tighter lending environment, declining affordability, and a lack of housing stock available for buyers.

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Report: GSEs Have Completed 3.3 Million Foreclosure Prevention Actions Since ’08

Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac have completed approximately 3.3 million foreclosure prevention actions in the last six years, according to the Federal Housing Finance Agency (FHFA)'s Q3 Foreclosure Prevention Report released Monday. Including the 72,700 foreclosure prevention actions completed by the GSEs in the third quarter, the two Enterprises have performed about 3.3 million such actions since the start of the conservatorship under FHFA in September 2008, according to the report. Nearly 2.8 million of those borrowers were able to stay in their homes as a result of receiving assistance from Fannie Mae or Freddie Mac.

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Unemployment Rate Falls in Most States, But Changes Little Overall

Forty-one states and the District of Columbia experienced month-over-month declines in their unemployment rate, while 43 states and the District of Columbia saw year-over-year decreases in unemployment for November, according to the Regional and State Employment and Unemployment November 2014 report released Friday by the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics.

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