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Tag Archives: Attorneys & Title Companies

Commentary: What’s in Store for Housing in 2014, Part 1

Many economists and market observers have suggested the market is poised for continued growth as the recovery enters its third year, and there are positive elements in play that provide some reasons for optimism. Recent loan vintages continue to perform at levels better than historical norms, which has allowed the industry to work through its backlog of distressed assets; foreclosure activity is declining; and housing starts have begun to rise.

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‘Extraordinary Stimulus’ Needed to Lift Consumer Spirits

As the economy struggles toward recovery, consumers are widely disappointed with the government, reluctant to spend, and harbor a somewhat pessimistic outlook toward future incomes, according to the Thomson Reuters/University of Michigan Survey of Consumers, which has observed consumer sentiment since 1946. Researchers say it's going to take an ""extraordinary stimulus"" to restore healthy economic growth.

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New President Takes Over at Stewart Title of California

Stewart Title of California announced the promotion of current group SVP Bob Oakland to the position of president. Oakland has been with the Stewart organization since 1995 and has worked since then to lead offices within the Direct Operations division on the West Coast.

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GSEs to Return Another $39B to Taxpayers

Both Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac continue to see strong profits as the housing market improves. With the release of their third-quarter results the GSEs announced they will be making substantial payments to the U.S. Treasury in December--$8.6 billion from Fannie Mae and $30.4 billion from Freddie Mac. Together, the two companies will have paid back about $185 billion to taxpayers as of December, nearly equaling the $188 billion in bailout money provided to the two mortgage financiers.

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Fitch Doles Out Upgrades But Insists RMBS Still Vulnerable

While perhaps not completely out of the woods yet, residential mortgage backed securities (RMBS) are on the mend with some improved performance of late, according to Fitch Ratings. An ""improving U.S. housing market and stable macro environment"" are boosting performance, leading Fitch to upgrade about 480 RMBS bonds so far this year and harbor a ""Positive Outlook"" on about 800 RMBS bonds. Looking ahead, the agency does not anticipate widespread upgrades in the year to come.

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Success for April Home Sales Doesn’t Diminish Market Doubt

A recent report from San Diego-based DataQuick reveals that although the month’s overall home sales increased, job security, tax increases, and other market uncertainty will ultimately limit growth. It is even believed that these concerns are so real that when weighed in light of other factors, they will eventually contribute to reductions in the market's housing demand, according to the data provider's April Property Intelligence Report (PIR).

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