Dec. 12: LO jobs, compliance personnel moves; non-QM & warehouse products; STRATMOR Tech Insight Study

Who among us has pushed for abolishing the mortgage-interest deduction, supported getting rid of government subsidies for the 30-year fixed-rate mortgage, putting Fannie and Freddie into receivership, and supported ending the sweep of F&F’s profits into the Federal Government? The answer is Dr. Mark Calabria, currently working for Mike Pence, and if confirmed by the Senate, he’ll replace Mel Watt as the Director of the FHFA, overseer of Freddie and Fannie. As mentioned yesterday in this commentary, there are plenty of ways the government can reduce its footprint in home lending: lowering LTVs, raising gfees, cutting back on non-owner or high-balance lending, adjusting the QM patch for DU & LP approval, and so on. Confirmation will take months and lets hope he has the industry’s best interests in mind, but given this personnel change, interest rates, M&A activity, and a housing shortage, it could make for an “interesting” 2019.

Jobs & promotions

“Retail branches looking to grow your income, improve your pricing, and expand your product line as you head into the challenging, new year ahead, we are an established and motivated mortgage banker that is interested in recruiting producing branches or teams. Join a company that has competitive pricing, 24-hour/around the clock operations and processing that makes decisions every day for the benefit and improvement of the sales team. If your numbers are stale due to the lack of competitiveness, and support, while experiencing anxiety from an unorganized group before closing, or are in need of solid processing support, then we are the right organization for you. Branches located in CA, CO, WA, OR, TX, FL, VA, that produce $5M – $30M monthly that are looking to become more competitive, increase margins, and have a full suite of loan products including an aggressively expanded Non-QM product line, should contact EVP Greg Handy.

Fidelity Bank Mortgage is pleased to announce the hiring of Amy Butler as the new Builder Services Manager, responsible for strategy and initiatives for Fidelity Bank Mortgage Builder clients. Amy is a veteran of the Mortgage industry, serving in various sales and leadership roles. Her vast network plus her devoted industry involvement, including past President of the Atlanta Mortgage Bankers Association, make her a great fit for the growing team. Click here to contact Amy. Fidelity Bank Mortgage is headquartered in Atlanta, Georgia with Retail Mortgage production offices throughout the Mid-Atlantic and Southeast. Since 2008, the Mortgage division has grown to over 40 offices and over 600 employees. We are expanding into new markets and interested in Top Sales and Leadership Talent. Click here to contact David Rapson, Senior Vice President, Mortgage Production Manager, and view our eBook to learn more about our team.

Mortgage Possible launches nationally, names Eddie Brown Managing Director of National Production. Brown has 21 years of experience driving change and strategy for residential mortgage lending, focusing his efforts on enhancing customer experience through innovation. In 2011, Brown was brought on board to help promote productivity and growth for Emery Financial, where he lead the company to its largest dollar production month in company history. More recently, Brown served as the Managing Director of leading lender, where he brought significant gross volume increases to both consumer direct an inside sales for wholesale production. “I’m grateful for the opportunity to help drive change in the industry with Mortgage Possible,” said Brown. “People who don’t care will go the way of Blockbuster & Toys R Us. No business can rest on their past success as the market is always changing. It’s my duty to my family and my team to be on the forefront of change.”

For Loan Officers or Branch Managers looking for a change, MortgageRight sets itself apart from other companies by offering lower rates, better pricing and higher compensation.

MortgageRight is making a name for itself across the nation by operating with thinner margins than other industry players due to several key strategic factors put into place by ownership in order to help their producers win in a market like this one. Very simply, they can offer lower rates and/or a higher comp and they can back their claims up 100%. But don’t take their word for it – They’ll put any candidate in touch with recent hires and existing LOs to discuss their strengths along with everything else they have to offer. For a pricing engine walk through, contact Mike Russo at (866) 425-5456 or visit them at www.branchright.com.

Lenders Compliance Group, a nationwide risk management firm, announced that Joyce Wilkins Pollison has been appointed to the position of Executive Director as well as retain her position as Director of Legal and Regulatory Compliance. Jonathan Foxx, Chairman and Managing Director, noted that, “For many years, Joyce has provided our clients reliable compliance support on applicable federal and state banking laws and regulations, identifying regulatory risks as well as developing, reviewing, and editing procedures and policies to assure regulatory compliance. In addition to her role as Director of Legal and Regulatory Compliance, Joyce has demonstrated substantial leadership and served as Team Leader for LCG’s monthly clients.” In 2018, LCG’s growth increased for its twelfth consecutive year. This continuing growth has strengthened the need for enhanced executive management. Ms. Pollison will have oversight of LCG’s monthly clients, projects, regulatory tune-up’s, audits, risk assessments, research and team assignments, webinars, educational venues, conferences and convention exhibitions. Recently, Ms. Pollison was recognized as a recipient of the honor of Mortgage Banking’s Most Powerful Women 2018 by National Mortgage Professional Magazine. For more information, please contact compliance@lenderscompliancegroup.com.

Lender products and services

In eMortgage news, congratulations to Texas Capital Bank on achieving an industry first! Texas Capital Bank, N.A. helps lenders position themselves for the future by providing warehouse financing secured by eNotes and purchasing fully digital mortgages through its Correspondent Lending group, is the first bank in the industry to do both. Contact Bruce Karda, National Sales Manager for Warehouse Lending, or Matthew Mead, National Sales Manager for Correspondent Lending, to learn how they can support your business.

Floify just announced that its next-generation mortgage point-of-sale system is now available for use with Ellie Mae’s Encompass® digital mortgage solution. The seamless, two-way integration allows lenders to access Encompass® directly through Floify to drive quality and efficiency in the loan origination process. By using the Encompass® integration with Floify, loan originators will be able to quickly and easily process borrower loan applications, securely send and receive supporting documentation, automatically deploy status updates and reminders via email and SMS, and more – all from a single, intuitive user interface. To see this powerful integration in action, request a live demo!

Non-QM origination volume continues to grow at a robust pace, and as we near the finish line for 2018, the velocity of growth, interest in the product, and capital investment are at an all-time high. Deephaven Mortgage is committed to helping the industry continue its upward trajectory. To help originators & executives learn more about the Non-QM marketplace, Deephaven has partnered with NMP on several informative webinars that you shouldn’t miss: “What & Why of Non-QM” and learn about “How to build a Non-QM focused business.” Find out more about how Non-QM can help you grow your business by contacting us at

brokerinfo@deephavenmortgage.com (Wholesale) or sales@deephavenmortgage.com (Correspondent).

PlainsCapital Bank National Warehouse Lending, a subsidiary of Hilltop Holdings (NYSE: HTH), “continues to look for opportunities to help reduce our customers costs as related to their warehouse funding needs. That is why we offer multiple incentive pricing options to reduce costs for our customersTiered Utilization Incentive Pricing allows our customers to set utilization tiers they are comfortable meeting with rate incentives that reduce their costs. Our customers can also take advantage of Deposit Incentive Pricing. PlainsCapital Bank offers a competitive line up of Treasury Management products and when our customers take advantage of those products, they earn rate incentives to further reduce costs. We are committed to building strong relationships with our customers and providing the service you need most.” If you are interested in learning more about PlainsCapital Bank National Warehouse Lending please Deric Barnett, EVP National Warehouse Lending.

Tech & vendor news

Lenders need to put this one on their New Year’s Resolution list: Lisa Springer, CEO of STRATMOR Group tells me that STRATMOR has released its 2018 Technology Insight Study with more information than ever before on a wide range of system technologies that lenders are actively using. “This report is the only independent technology survey in the industry that captures data on mortgage lender experiences with their technology, from lead generation through post-closing and delivery. Our goal in developing this study is to offer lenders much needed, lender perspectives on the technologies at work in the mortgage marketplace. One of the biggest ‘aha’ moments of this year’s study is that digital is no longer a competitive differentiator: it’s the new reality. Customers expect a digital experience, and lenders who are not offering customers options for executing disclosures, uploading docs and other origination steps have fallen far behind their peers. This study gives lenders a voice in their overall technology experience without the hype or sales pitch from the vendor.”

(The comprehensive end-to-end study that includes the Digital findings is now available for purchase, or lenders can purchase the Digital Mortgage section separately. For more information, contact the STRATMOR Group through their website or click here: STRATMOR Tech Insights, to purchase.)

Riivos, a financial forecasting company, continues to add clients and has added Jeffrey Axelrod to its staff. Riivos works on forecasting or doing ‘what if’ scenarios for lenders. For less than a basis point Riivos helps originators make more money by providing visibility into the financial and operational components of the loan manufacturing process – management can make informed decisions on which changes to make to become more profitable. On average, Riivos mortgage customers are actually making 11 bps more in 2018 than 2017, significantly outperforming the industry in net income bps.

Capital markets

The U.S. 10-year displayed the same movement yesterday as it did to start the week, closing +1bp for the second consecutive day; this time the figure at closing registered 2.87%, with shorter duration Treasuries rising in a curve-flattening fashion on no real news. Trade tensions with China highlighted the day, with reports of Trade Rep. Lighthizer, Treasury Secretary Mnuchin, and China Vice Premier Liu having a call to advance trade talks. China reportedly agreed to cut U.S. auto import tariff rate to 15% from 40%, but it is unknown when the change will go into effect. On the Brexit front, after UK Prime Minster May asked to renegotiate the Brexit deal with EU, EU President Tusk said the EU will not renegotiate the deal and German Chancellor Merkel said there is no way to change the Brexit deal. And Reserve Bank of India Governor Urjit Patel abruptly resigned in a move that was interpreted as a signal of dissension between the government and the central bank over the handling of monetary policy.

In this country and the impending U.S. government shutdown, as President Trump said to Representative Nancy Pelosi and Senator Charles Schumer that he would be proud to shut down government in name of border security if he does not get funding to build the wall. In Fed-land, Former Fed Chair Yellen said leveraged loans and reductions in regulatory authority could be a potential setup for another financial crisis at some point. And Bloomberg reported Fed Chairman Powell plans to widen the Fed’s communication plan to build public trust and insulate the Fed from political attacks.

Turning to today, MBA mortgage applications for the week ending December 7 kicked off today: +1.6% (refis at 41.5% of apps), the Consumer Price Index for November came in flat, core +.2%, as expected. Real weekly earnings are seen rising 0.1% MoM, the same as October. Closing the day is the November Treasury budget statement, due to be released at 2:00pm with the CBO estimating a deficit of $203 billion compared with $138.5 billion in the prior fiscal year. We begin today with the 10-year yielding 2.89% and Agency MBS prices worse a smidge versus last night.

(Thanks to Ed W. for this one.)

There was a man who worked for the Post Office whose job was to process all the mail that had illegible addresses. One day, a letter came addressed in a shaky handwriting to God with no actual address. He thought he should open it to see what it was about. The letter read:

Dear God, I am an 83-year-old widow, living on a very small pension. Yesterday someone stole my purse. It had $100 in it, which was all the money I had until my next pension payment. Christmas is in two weeks, and I had invited two of my friends over for dinner. Without that money, I have nothing to buy food with, have no family to turn to, and you are my only hope. Can you please help me?

Sincerely, Melva

The postal worker was touched. He showed the letter to all the other workers. Each one dug into his or her wallet and came up with a few dollars. By the time he made the rounds, he had collected $96, which they put into an envelope and sent to the woman.

The rest of the day, all the workers felt a warm glow thinking of Melva and the dinner she would be able to share with her friends. Christmas came and went.

A few days later, another letter came from the same old lady to God. All the workers gathered around while the letter was opened. It read:

Dear God, How can I ever thank you enough for what you did for me?

Because of your gift of love, I was able to fix a glorious dinner for my friends. We had a very nice day and I told my friends of your wonderful gift.

PS: there was $4 missing. I think it might have been those b-stards at the Post Office.

Sincerely, Melva

Visit www.robchrisman.com for more information on our industry partners, access archived commentaries, or to subscribe to the Daily Mortgage News and Commentary. If you’re interested, visit my periodic blog at the STRATMOR Group web site. The current blog is, “Servicing: Don’t Underestimate Liquidity.” If you have both the time and inclination, make a comment on what I have written, or on other comments so that folks can learn what’s going on out there from the other readers.

Rob

(Market data provided in partnership with MBS Live. For free job postings and to view candidate resumes visit LenderNews. Currently there are hundreds of mortgage professionals looking for operations, secondary and management roles. For up-to-date mortgage news visit Mortgage News Daily. For archived commentaries, or to subscribe, go to www.robchrisman.com. Copyright 2018 Chrisman LLC. All rights reserved. Occasional paid job listings do appear. This report or any portion hereof may not be reprinted, sold or redistributed without the written consent of Rob Chrisman.)