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Fannie CEO Says GSE Will Speed Up Lending

Saying the U.S. housing recovery has a long road ahead, the president of Fannie Mae indicated Wednesday that the government-sponsored mortgage giant will accelerate its funding in sales of loan-backed assets in an attempt to give lending a shot in the arm.

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Florida AG Sues Mortgage Mod Companies

Florida Attorney General Bill McCollum filed a lawsuit against four related South Florida mortgage companies this week. McCollum alleges that FHA All Day.Com and owner Jason Vitulano, as well as three other affiliated companies, charge up-front fees for loan modification services, purportedly collecting up to $1 million on a monthly basis.

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House Committee Approves Extension of High-Cost Loan Limit

The House Appropriations Committee has voted to extend the $729,750 limit for federal loans in high-cost markets through September 2010. The loan limit applies to mortgages financed through Fannie Mae, Freddie Mac, and the Federal Housing Administration (FHA) and is currently set to revert back to $417,000 at the end of this year unless the extension is approved by Congress.

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Alabama Bankers Look to Wolters Kluwer for Mortgage Lending Compliance

Wolters Kluwer Financial Services announced Tuesday that the Alabama Bankers Association (ABA) has endorsed the company’s mortgage lending compliance solutions. The company explained that its mortgage compliance documentation solutions help institutions reduce regulatory and operational risk, increase speed-to-market, and close loans more efficiently.

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Freddie: Long-Term Mortgage Rates Rise

Mortgage interest rates were mixed this past week with fixed-rate loans somewhat higher and adjustable-rate mortgages lower, according to numbers compiled by mortgage financier Freddie Mac. Still, housing affordability is the highest it’s been in many years, with significantly reduced rates and housing prices.

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Bernanke in the Hot Seat on Capitol Hill

During two days of congressional hearings this week, Federal Reserve Chairman Ben Bernanke told lawmakers he expects foreclosures to head higher still. He added that Fed officials anticipate an economic recovery to start off slowly, primarily because consumers are struggling with high debt and declining housing prices.

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Massachusetts OKs Tax Credit Downpayment

Massachusetts Gov. Deval Patrick unveiled a statewide program last week that will allow first-time homebuyers to get an advance on the $8,000 federal tax credit to use toward downpayments and closing costs.

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St. Louis Fed Site Tracks Regulatory Reform

The Federal Reserve Bank of St. Louis launched a new Web site feature Tuesday, designed to help the public keep track of major regulatory developments in the government’s actions for financial system reform .

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