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Pennsylvania Steps Up Foreclosure Fight

Pennsylvania Gov. Edward D. Rendell announced on Monday an emergency executive action= intended to provide immediate relief to struggling homeowners in the state. The governor is directing $5 million in state funding to be used for mortgage assistance to ensure that recently unemployed workers can keep their homes while they are retraining and finding new jobs, the governor’s office said in a press statement.

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Report: Mortgage Lawsuits Diminish in Q4

Despite a surge in actions taken by bank regulators, overall mortgage litigation eased at the end of last year, according to a study prepared by the D.C. law firm of Weiner Brodsky Sidman Kider PC. The firm tracked a total of 202 active cases in the fourth quarter report.

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HomeGain Poll Shows Value Disconnect

Emeryville, California-based HomeGain, the first website to provide free instant home values, today announced the results of a nationwide survey analyzing homeowners’ and homebuyers’ views on home prices.

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UFA: Default Tsunami May Be Receding

According to Michigan-based University Financial Associates (UFA), the risk of default for nonprime mortgages during the first quarter of 2009 is down from Q4 2008. The company’s Default Risk Index for the first three month’s of 2009 fell to 201 from last quarter’s revised index of 209.

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New Yorkers Protest REDC Auction

An auction of foreclosed homes in New York City was picketed by a group of two dozen protesters on Sunday. The auction of more than 375 foreclosed homes was put on by Real Estate Disposition Corp. (REDC), and was only the second event the company has held in the Big Apple.

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Former Countrywide Execs Buying Up Bad Mortgages

Many have argued that Countrywide Financial and its top executives carry a large portion of the blame for the current state of the housing market and the vast amounts of bad loans that have now infiltrated the nation’s financial system.

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Cramdown Bill Passes House

The U.S. House of Representatives approved legislation on Thursday that will allow bankruptcy judges to reduce the principal amount of mortgage loans. The proposed law has received stiff opposition from the banking and mortgage industries, but the Obama administration and Democratic lawmakers have been unrelenting in pushing the so-called cramdown legislation through Congress.

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Freddie Investigating Own Lobbying

McLean, Virgina-based mortgage giant Freddie Mac has hired a team of lawyers to investigate the company’s own lobbying efforts. Under scrutiny is a campaign that tallied $2 billion, and according to an Associated Press:http://www.

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Freddie Launches REO Rental Initiative

On Thursday, Freddie Mac announced the official launch of its new REO Rental Initiative, giving qualified tenants and former owners the option to lease their recently foreclosed properties on a month-to-month basis.

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