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RealtyTrac Foreclosure Data Now Available through Moody’s Analytics

RealtyTrac's foreclosure, property, loan, and home sales data is now available via Moody's Analytics, an independent provider of economic forecasting and credit risk services. By aggregating RealtyTrac's proprietary foreclosure information and combining it with local economic and house price measures, Moody's says banks, asset managers, and federal and local governments are given insight into all stages of the foreclosure process.

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No New Foreclosure Wave in Sight for California: Report

Foreclosure activity in California was again mixed last month, according to ForeclosureRadar. The company's latest report shows that foreclosure filings and cancellations dropped in July after rising the month before, while foreclosure sales rose. But even with the wrong indicators heading upward and a large ""shadow inventory"" of properties in default, ForeclosureRadar says it doesn't expect the foreclosure picture in the Golden State to worsen any time soon, namely because it currently takes lenders 226 days to complete the process.

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FHFA Moves to Establish Ombudsman Office for Regulatory Complaints

The Federal Housing Finance Agency (FHFA) has proposed the establishment of an Office of the Ombudsman to field complaints related to FHFA's regulations and supervision. The Office of the Ombudsman would be responsible for considering grievances and appeals from entities overseen by FHFA, including Fannie Mae, Freddie Mac, and the Federal Home Loan Banks, as well as any person that has a business relationship with a regulated entity or the Office of Finance.

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Fannie Mae Provides Free Foreclosure Prevention Services in Atlanta

Struggling Atlanta homeowners with Fannie Mae-owned home loans can now take advantage of the company's new mortgage help center. The third facility in a series of planned, nationwide mortgage help centers, the Atlanta center provides counseling and other services for borrowers to help them avoid foreclosure. Both English- and Spanish-speaking housing counselors will be on hand to explain options to homeowners and help finalize documentation for modifications or other loan workouts.

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Berkadia Hires BlackRock Founding Partner as New CEO

Berkadia Commercial Mortgage LLC announced the appointment of Hugh R. Frater as CEO this week. He replaces Michael I. Lipson, who left the organization. Frater was a founding partner and managing director of BlackRock, Inc., the largest publicly traded investment manager. He also served as EVP for the real estate division of PNC Financial Services.

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NeighborWorks-Run Program Counsels over 1M Distressed Homeowners

More than one million homeowners have received counseling through the National Foreclosure Mitigation Counseling program since its launch in January 2008. The program, which is administered by NeighborWorks America, has been appropriated $475 million in federal funding to provide free, community-based counseling to distressed homeowners. Lawmakers are pushing for another $113 million to be made available for the program through fiscal year 2011.

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Losses on CMBS Loan Liquidations Climb in Q2: Moody’s

The severity of losses on liquidating loans backing U.S. commercial mortgage-backed securities (CMBS) exceeded their historical average in the second quarter, Moody's Investors Service says in a new report. During Q2, the credit ratings agency says the 342 commercial real estate loans liquidated for a loss had a weighted average loss severity of 42.8 percent, 740 basis points higher than the current average. And Moody's expects loss severity to worsen as more 2006-2008 loans go bad.

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New Rule May Ban GSEs from Investing in Mortgages with Transfer Fees

The Federal Housing Finance Agency wants to restrict Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac from purchasing mortgages with private transfer fee covenants, also referred to as Wall Street home resale fees. These fees are sometimes worked into home purchase contracts, and require that a percentage of the sale price be paid to the original owner of the property every time the property is sold, typically for 99 years. FHFA says ""the fees fund purely private streams of income for select market participants and do not benefit homeowners.""

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Treasury Corrects Its Math for HAMP Redefaults

When the Treasury Department released its latest progress report for the Home Affordable Modification Program (HAMP) in late July, it showed the redault rate for permanently modified loans to be around the two percent mark. An outcry from analysts - and some of you discerning DSnews.com readers - immediately followed, questioning the validity of the government's math. Last week, the Treasury quietly corrected its redefault assessment. The revised numbers are between 6 and 10 percent.

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