March… in like a lamb out like a lion!
You know, just when I thought our industry had gone soft… the week of March 25th, 2019 happened, and we totally redeemed ourselves (think Harry Dunn in Dumb & Dumber)!! Let’s take a look around the industry and see what the heck has been happening!
March 25th – Goldman Sachs issued its first MBS (since before the crash) with a mix of prime jumbo loans & Fannie/Freddie eligible product
March 26th – Anthony Casa declares war on retail lenders claiming they are overcharging veterans for mortgages
March 27th – President Trump officially calls for an end to conservatorship of Fannie & Freddie
March 27th (again) – The 10-yr Treasury drops to 2.373% marking its first return to the low 2s since November, 2017
March 28th – HUD files a lawsuit against Facebook for engaging in housing discrimination
First on the list… Goldman Sachs and the mortgage bond market. The private securitization markets are making a comeback and we can now add Goldman to list of large money centers pooling mortgage loans for public offerings. What does this mean? Well, it means that Wall Street has an appetite for mortgage securities again AND independent mortgage banks have additional outlets in which to sell loans to. Thus, creating the potential for more product availability, different pricing options for lenders and (ominous music) less government oversight on mortgage lending.
This definitely goes hand in hand with President Trumps calls for housing reform and removing both Fannie and Freddie from government conservatorship. Look, I dig free markets and believe that the mortgage industry will benefit from this move, but the last time we were held to our own devices we did a number on ourselves. The government got involved because there was no other choice and while history does tend to repeat itself, my hope is that we’ve learned our lesson.
Okay… let’s see what’s next… oh, Anthony Casa posted a strongly worded article calling out several of the large retail mortgage lenders in the country claiming they have been taking advantage of veterans by over charging them for mortgages. Casa, (whose data is now being questioned by Fairway Independent Mortgage) claimed that some retail lenders are charging veterans 20% higher for mortgages originated through their retail channels. There were a lot of strong words thrown around in the article… so much so that Fairway issued Casa a cease and desist order as they felt Casa’s statements were “egregiously false”. As always, there was a plug for UWM and their low rates in his article… so I’ll counter with a plug of our own… in 2019 Princeton Mortgage Wholesales’ weighted current interest rate for a VA loan was 4.135% edging out UWM by almost 20bps (insert sunglass wearing emoji here). Jokes and plugs aside… it’ll be interesting to watch how this plays out and if you’re interested in learning more about our VA products please give me a call (my number is below) sorry last plug.
Alright let’s wrap this up by talking about Facebook being in the dog house… again. The social media giant is being sued for using its data mining practices (you know the same practices used to create Brexit and subsequently win the 2016 presidential election) to target which users are able to view housing related adds and which do not. The lawsuits states that Facebook is in violation of the federal Fair Housing Act and I mean this is clearly marketing discrimination, but as always, it’s a very unique situation that will ultimately result in Mr. Zuckerberg cutting a fat check (let’s just hope we don’t have to watch him stumble through another hearing).
I didn’t forget about the 10-yr dropping either. We’re in the middle of a mini-refi boom and with so much turmoil over the world markets who knows what this spring/summer is going to bring for the mortgage industry. All I know is that everyone is starting to get busy again and from the looks of it we’re just seeing the tip of the iceberg.
I hope everyone had a great weekend!
Talk to you soon,
Photo by Jeff Rodgers on Unsplash
The opinions expressed in this post are the sole view of the writer and do not reflect the opinion of Princeton Mortgage Corporation.