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Nevada Enacts BPO Law

Nevada Governor Jim Gibbons signed Senate Bill 184 into law last Tuesday. The measure, which received widespread support from real estate brokers, agents, and appraisers in the state, enables broker price opinions (BPOs) to be performed in Nevada and provides the real estate valuation industry there with clarity regarding BPO preparation and delivery.

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New York Governor Wants Stronger Mortgage Protections

New York Gov. David A. Paterson has proposed legislation that would build upon the state’s subprime lending reform law enacted last year. The measure centers on providing additional protections for homeowners and tenants, establishing safeguards against foreclosure rescue scams, and preventing urban blight caused by foreclosed homes.

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Pro-Teck Endorses NEW BPO Standards

Waltham, Massachusetts-based Pro-Teck Services recently issued a statement endorsing the Broker Price Opinion (BPO) Standards and Guidelines (BPOSG) introduced by the BPO Standards Board late last month.

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Comptroller Dugan Tours Dallas

Comptroller of the Currency John C. Dugan recently toured two Dallas neighborhoods where low- and moderate-income homebuyers are being given affordable opportunities to own a home. Dugan described one of these neighborhoods in South Dallas as being hit hard by foreclosures.

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Lending Down at Bailed-Out Banks

Federal regulators completed unprecedented stress tests of the largest banks’ balance sheets last month, and found that 10 of the 19 institutions screened had enough capital on hand to not only sustain lending in the current environment, but could continue lending even if economic conditions worsen.

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Fed Underwater On MBS Purchases

The U.S. Federal Reserve’s plan to buy up mortgage-backed securities (MBS) has proven to be a high-ticket project. According to a recent Wall Street Journal:http://www.wsjonline.com report, which cited analysis by JP Morgan Chase, the Fed is underwater on its MBS portfolio by about one percent, and it would have to take approximately $5 billion in losses if it were to mark its portfolio to the market.

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Treasury Outlines New Pay Rules for TARP

The Treasury Department announced new rules late Wednesday that limit executive compensation for lenders who have received bailout money from the government. Such restrictions have stirred controversy within the financial sector and are the primary reason many banks want to start repaying the taxpayer funding they received through the Troubled Asset Relief Program (TARP).

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Mortgage Rates Highest in Seven Months

Long-term mortgage interest rates have climbed to their highest levels since late last year, casting a dark cloud on any early signs of a housing recovery and stalling the recent wave of refinances many struggling homeowners employed to get out from under unsustainable mortgages.

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MERS Program Addresses Federal Mortgage Transparency Regulation

Reston, Virginia-based MERSCORP, Inc. (MERS) unveiled a new program on Tuesday that informs borrowers of ownership changes regarding their mortgage. The company says its program supports new federal legislation, which is designed to help homeowners keep their homes by bringing greater transparency and accountability to the mortgage lending process.

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Oversight Panel: New Stress Tests Needed

The Congressional Oversight Panel, one of the federal watchdogs that oversees the government’s $700 billion bailout of the financial industry, says regulators’ stress tests of the nation’s 19 largest banks should be administered again using more severe economic assumptions, and should be conducted over a longer period.

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