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Home > Author Archives: ProPublica (page 3)

Author Archives: ProPublica

Forgiven Debt from Mortgages May Soon be Taxed Again as Income Unless Congress Acts

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by Lois Beckett ProPublica You bought your house when the market was high and then lost your job. In order to avoid foreclosure, you negotiated a short sale for half of what you paid, ruining your credit rating for years and draining your bank account. But there is a tiny silver lining: Thanks to a 2007 law, you don’t have ... Read More »

    Will Proposed Government Programs Really Help Homeowners?

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    by Cora Currier ProPublica The Obama administration has recently unveiled a string of proposals to help struggling homeowners and get the housing market back on its feet2014 part of the administration’s “We Can’t Wait” election year to-do list. Of course, the White House has made big promises before about helping homeowners, only to see them disappoint time and again. Here ... Read More »

      Senators Angry About Freddie Mac Betting Against Homeowners

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      by Jesse Eisinger ProPublica Sen. Robert Menendez, D-N.J., had sharp words for Freddie Mac’s investment practices and conflicts of interest at a Senate Banking Committee hearing Thursday. The senator’s concerns came in the wake of a ProPublica and NPR report that Freddie, the giant taxpayer-owned mortgage company, had made concentrated investments in complex mortgage securities that benefited from the inability ... Read More »

        Mortgage Settlement With Banks Leaves Consumers Still Looking In the Abandoned Windows

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        by Cora Currier ProPublica The Obama administration is billing today’s $25 billion agreement between most states and five banks that engaged in flawed or deceptive practices as a big win for struggling homeowners. Most of the money in the settlement isn’t a penalty, or a fine levied on the banks. Instead, the biggest slice of the settlement will be money ... Read More »

          Federal Housing Finance Agency Just STICKING it to Homeowners

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          by Cora Currier ProPublica, Last week, ProPublica and NPR raised questions about a risky investment strategy at Freddie Mac that would pay off if homeowners stayed trapped in expensive mortgages. It’s just the latest example of how government-owned Freddie Mac and Fannie Mae have frustrated many by not putting homeowners first. Fannie and Freddie are required to help homeowners while ... Read More »

            Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac Just Won’t Help Homeowners. Here’s Why.

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            by Cora Currier ProPublica Earlier this week, ProPublica and NPR detailed how Freddie Mac placed bets against homeowners that paid off if borrowers were unable to refinance their mortgage loans. The story highlighted the conflicted role of the behemoth and now government-controlled Freddie Mac and Fannie Mae: They are at once supposed to maximize their profits and thus pay back ... Read More »

              The Exploding Income Gap

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              by Braden Goyette, ProPublica The nonpartisan Congressional Budget Office recently released a much-discussed study showing that over the past three decades the income of the highest-paid Americans has soared while the income of others has grown much more modestly. Here’s a rundown of some statistics illustrating the growing income gap. But first, some context. These numbers reflect income, not wealth. ... Read More »

                Allied Home Mortgage The Subject of Fed Case

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                Feds File Massive Fraud Case Against Allied Home Mortgage by Tracy Weber and Charles Ornstein ProPublica, Nov. 1, 2011, 5:51 Charles Ornstein and Tracy Weber, ProPublica, July 2, 2010by Tracy Weber and Charles Ornstein, ProPublica, July 2, 2010by Charles Ornstein and Tracy Weber, ProPublica, July 2, 2010 Federal prosecutors sued Allied Home Mortgage Capital Corp. and two top executives ... Read More »

                  Financial Regulation Kills Jobs? Perhaps Not

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                  by Marian Wang ProPublica With the presidential campaign in motion, and President Obama urging immediate passage of his new jobs bill, the attention in Washington has shifted almost exclusively to the economy and job creation. And that means a shift away from regulation, right? Not necessarily. Some regulators and financial industry experts are predicting the opposite–that new financial regulations will ... Read More »

                    Nevada Bitch Slaps Bank of America Over Mortgage Mess

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                    by Paul Kiel, ProPublica The state of Nevada dramatically expanded its lawsuit against Bank of America today, turning the narrow case it filed late last year into a broadside that targets virtually all aspects of the bank’s mortgage operations. Bank of America has previously denied wrongdoing. The sweeping new suit could have repercussions far beyond Nevada’s borders. It further jeopardizes ... Read More »

                      CFPB Praised for Openness and Transparency Trying to Be Gutted on Capitol Hill

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                      Will Innovative New Financial Regulator Be Hobbled Before It Even Starts? by Lois Beckett ProPublica, July 20, 2011, 4:26 p.m. Want to know what people find most confusing about mortgage disclosure documents? Then check out these heat maps created by a new government regulatory agency. The heat maps show two model mortgage forms that the agency posted on its website ... Read More »

                        Mortgage Industry Hates Borrowers. Not Worth Helping.

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                        by Lois Beckett, ProPublica, Outgoing Federal Deposit Insurance Corporation Chairwoman Sheila C. Bair’s revealing exit interview by the New York Times’ Joe Nocera has generated plenty of buzz. But while the interview provided a comprehensive look at Bair’s role from 2006 to 2011, what caught our attention was her characterization of the foreclosure crisis. Bair said that the mortgage’s industry’s ... Read More »

                          Banks Still Foreclosing on Wrong People

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                          by Paul Kiel, ProPublica Four years into the foreclosure crisis, banks say they’ve made major improvements in how they handle struggling homeowners. They’ve promised, for example, not to foreclose on homeowners who are being considered for mortgage modifications. But that’s still happening. Consider the cases of Laurie Pinkerton and Lisa Peterson. The two women, both Californians and Bank of America ... Read More »

                            Government to Bank of America, Wells Fargo, JPMorgan Chase – “You Suck at Loan Modifications.”

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                            by Paul Kiel ProPublica The Obama administration’s mortgage modification program is more than two years old. From the beginning, it’s been apparent that the participating banks and mortgage servicers were breaking the program’s rules. The administration has long argued it has little power to do anything about it. But now, after millions of homeowners have been rejected, the government has ... Read More »

                              Banks Lose in Senate Today Over Debit Card Fees

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                              by Marian Wang ProPublica, What’s arguably been the biggest lobbying brawl so far this year came to a head today in the Senate when lawmakers voted against delaying a controversial element of the Dodd-Frank financial reform legislation. The vote clears the way for the Federal Reserve to set rules that would limit banks’ revenue from debit card fees and cut ... Read More »

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