Banks tapped Fed for billions

first_img BANK of America went cap in hand to the Fed’s discount window twice more than perviously revealed, according to a slew of documents released by the Fed yesterday.It borrowed a total of $1bn (£624m) over two days in August 2007, in addition to $500m previously disclosed.The documents, which were released after a news wire obtained a court order, also show that two second-tier European financial players – Dexia and Depfa – accounted for nearly half of the $111bn borrowed from the Fed on 29 October, 2008. Nine of the 12 largest borrowers on that day, when lending through its emergency discount window peaked, were foreign-owned firms.Belgian-French Dexia borrowed $26.5bn, and Dublin-based Depfa, a subsidiary of German property lender Hypo Real Estate Holding, accepted $24.6bn. In the days and weeks surrounding Lehman’s bankruptcy, the Fed also made multi-billion-dollar loans to other foreign banks through its discount window, including Bank of Scotland, which took out $5bn overnight, Royal Bank of Scotland, Commerzbank, Societe Generale and Austria’s Erste Group. Arab Banking Corp, now owned by the Central Bank of Libya, borrowed $1.1bn. Show Comments ▼ Tags: NULL Thursday 31 March 2011 8:44 pm Banks tapped Fed for billions Read This NextWATCH: Shohei Ohtani continues home run tear, Los Angeles Angels winSportsnautYoga for Beginners: 3 Different Types of Yoga You Should TryFamily ProofHiking Gadgets: Amazon Deals Perfect For Your Next AdventureFamily ProofChicken Bao: Delicious Recipes Worth CookingFamily ProofWhat to Know About ‘Loki’ Ahead of Disney+ Premier on June 9Family ProofBack on the Rails for Summer New York to New Orleans, Savannah and MiamiFamily ProofBaked Sesame Salmon: Recipes Worth CookingFamily Proof’A Quiet Place Part II’ Sets Pandemic Record in Debut WeekendFamily ProofCheese Crostini: Delicious Recipes Worth CookingFamily Proof Share whatsapp KCS-content whatsapp last_img read more

Covid-19: annual revenue expected to miss 2013 total

first_imgAddThis Sharing ButtonsShare to LinkedInLinkedInShare to FacebookFacebookShare to TwitterTwitter Bingo Global gambling revenue is now estimated by H2 Gambling Capital to finish the year below the total for 2013 as the novel coronavirus (Covid-19) crisis continues to disrupt the sectoriGB’s principal data partner is projecting 2020 global gambling gross win for the sector of $399.6bn, 15.6% below the forecast it provided before the industry began to be impacted by the outbreak from early February (see Charts 1 and 2 below).The annual downgrade of 15.6% projected by H2 in Week 10 of its tracking of the cumulative impact of the novel coronavirus outbreak on the global gambling industry compares to 13.6% a week ago.From a regional standpoint, Europe saw the greatest downgrade in the last seven days, by more than three percentage points to 13.6%. Asia/Oceania, first impacted by the pandemic, is currently forecast to finish 18.7% below the pre-crisis estimate, and North America by 12.6% (Charts 3-5 below).The growth of online vis a vis its land-based counterpart now appears to have plateaued, with digital’s projected share of 16.5% of total global gambling revenues for 2020 flat on the figure estimated a week earlier (see Chart 6).H2 also warned of a further negative impact midway through the month of more US states reporting their March figures, after those states that reported early in April posted revenue numbers 60-65% below what H2 had expected pre-crisis.This week will also see the IMF publish revised GDP forecasts including the impact of the Covid-19 outbreak, which H2 said it expected to have a further material impact on its 2020 expectations for global industry gross win. Subscribe to the iGaming newsletter 10th April 2020 | By Stephen Carter Global gambling revenue is now estimated by H2 Gambling Capital to finish the year below the total for 2013 as the novel coronavirus (Covid-19) crisis continues to disrupt the sectorcenter_img Tags: Card Rooms and Poker Mobile Online Gambling Topics: Casino & games Finance Lottery Sports betting Bingo Poker Table games Covid-19: annual revenue expected to miss 2013 total Email Addresslast_img read more

Rak Unity Petroleum Company Plc (RAKUNT.ng) HY2014 Interim Report

first_imgRak Unity Petroleum Company Plc (RAKUNT.ng) listed on the Nigerian Stock Exchange under the Energy sector has released it’s 2014 interim results for the half year.For more information about Rak Unity Petroleum Company Plc (RAKUNT.ng) reports, abridged reports, interim earnings results and earnings presentations, visit the Rak Unity Petroleum Company Plc (RAKUNT.ng) company page on AfricanFinancials.Document: Rak Unity Petroleum Company Plc (RAKUNT.ng)  2014 interim results for the half year.Company ProfileRak Unity Petroleum Company Plc sells and distributes a range of petroleum products in Nigeria and has business interests in storing oil, gas and kerosene. The company’s Bulk division sells petroleum products in bulk which includes premium motor spirits, automotive gas oil, dual purpose kerosene and lubricants. The Retail division sells petroleum products through a network of retail outlets in the major towns and cities of Nigeria. The Dump division sells petroleum products through dumpsites at customers’ premises. Lubricants are marketed in partnership with an international lube manufacturer. Rak Unity Petroleum Company Plc is listed on the Nigerian Stock Exchangelast_img read more

Mkombozi Commercial Bank Plc (MKCB.tz) HY2016 Interim Report

first_imgMkombozi Commercial Bank Plc (MKCB.tz) listed on the Dar es Salaam Stock Exchange under the Banking sector has released it’s 2016 interim results for the half year.For more information about Mkombozi Commercial Bank Plc (MKCB.tz) reports, abridged reports, interim earnings results and earnings presentations, visit the Mkombozi Commercial Bank Plc (MKCB.tz) company page on AfricanFinancials.Document: Mkombozi Commercial Bank Plc (MKCB.tz)  2016 interim results for the half year.Company ProfileMkombozi Commercial Bank Plc (MKCB) is a commercial bank serving and supporting emerging businesses in Tanzania. The financial institution targets small and medium-sized entrepreneurs, SACCOS and social enterprises such as schools, universities and public enterprises. MKCB started as an initiative of the Tanzania Episcopal Conference in 2009 to address the need to provide financial solutions to start-up businesses aswell as institutional investors and government entities. MKCB has 6 branches in the major towns and cities of Tanzania and plans to extend its footprint to increase accessibility and financial inclusion in areas which cannot be handled by mobile banking. Mkombozi Commercial Bank Plc is listed on the Dar es Salaam Stock Exchangelast_img read more

Can the stock market rally continue?

first_img I would like to receive emails from you about product information and offers from The Fool and its business partners. Each of these emails will provide a link to unsubscribe from future emails. More information about how The Fool collects, stores, and handles personal data is available in its Privacy Statement. Manika Premsingh has no position in any of the shares mentioned. The Motley Fool UK has no position in any of the shares mentioned. Views expressed on the companies mentioned in this article are those of the writer and therefore may differ from the official recommendations we make in our subscription services such as Share Advisor, Hidden Winners and Pro. Here at The Motley Fool we believe that considering a diverse range of insights makes us better investors. Image source: Getty Images. Manika Premsingh | Friday, 21st May, 2021 | More on: ^FTSE Enter Your Email Address Renowned stock-picker Mark Rogers and his analyst team at The Motley Fool UK have named 6 shares that they believe UK investors should consider buying NOW.So if you’re looking for more stock ideas to try and best position your portfolio today, then it might be a good day for you. Because we’re offering a full 33% off your first year of membership to our flagship share-tipping service, backed by our ‘no quibbles’ 30-day subscription fee refund guarantee. One FTSE “Snowball Stock” With Runaway Revenues Our 6 ‘Best Buys Now’ Sharescenter_img Grab your free report – while it’s online. Can the stock market rally continue? Observing recent trends in the FTSE 100 index, I was left wondering if we are still in a stock market rally. After all, the index levels keep dipping back to sub-7,000 levels. So I decided to take a step back, and look at the bigger FTSE 100 picture. 5G is here – and shares of this ‘sleeping giant’ could be a great way for you to potentially profit!According to one leading industry firm, the 5G boom could create a global industry worth US$12.3 TRILLION out of thin air…And if you click here we’ll show you something that could be key to unlocking 5G’s full potential…Turns out that the stock market has indeed been making gains. Robust FTSE 100 trendsMay has actually been a very good month so far. Up till now, on average the FTSE 100 index value is just north of 7,000. If this trend continues until the end of the month, it will be the first such instance in 15 months. The last time that the index closed above 7,000 was in February or before the pandemic struck. Also on a year-on-year basis, the FTSE 100 index is now in its third consecutive month of double-digit gains. It is up 18% compared to May 2020. The weak pointsWhile these are definite positives, I am still wondering if the stock market can continue to rise further. Or can it rise fast enough to be called a “rally”. Here is why.The index has fallen from last week. The fall is negligible, but it is there. Further, monthly growth is underwhelming. So far in May the index has grown by only 1.6% compared to a 3.1% increase last month. Not too long ago, in February, the index had actually fallen by 1.8% from the month before. So it is possible that the same can happen again. Also, at a macroeconomic level, expectations of an inflation spike have shaken investor confidence. Companies have increasingly pointed at inflation as a growing risk. Their costs are rising and some of them are passing these on to end customers as well.This has already started showing up in consumer prices. The US economy reported some ugly inflation numbers recently. Rising inflation is visible in the UK as well. High inflation can raise costs sharply and calls of knee-jerk policy reactions, which in turn can slow down growth rates.Looking aheadBut I take heart in the fact that central banks think it is still a wait-and-watch situation. In other words, they do not think that inflation is certain to stay elevated. Furthermore, the real growth spurt is yet to kick in. This is especially so in the UK, which will fully come out of lockdown only next month. While this could be inflationary too, inflation during high growth phases is to be anticipated. The more important aspect of high growth here is that it can support stock markets. What’s next for the stock market rally?In sum, I think that as a FTSE 100 investor, I have much to look forward to. I see the current, if I may say, dull phase, as an opportunity to buy rather than give into doubts about the future.  Simply click below to discover how you can take advantage of this. Looking for new share ideas?Grab this FREE report now.Inside, you discover one FTSE company with a runaway snowball of profits.From 2015-2019…Revenues increased 38.6%.Its net income went up 19.7 times!Since 2012, revenues from regular users have almost DOUBLEDThe opportunity here really is astounding.In fact, one of its own board members recently snapped up 25,000 shares using their own money… So why sit on the side lines a minute longer?You could have the full details on this company right now. See all posts by Manika Premsinghlast_img read more

Saracens CEO Heath Harvey on New York, a global network and breaking the mould

first_img By Graham Jenkins“We don’t just want to be a north London rugby club; we want to use rugby to change people’s lives”Saracens chief executive Heath Harvey’s bold proclamation may sound as if it has been lifted from a Hollywood script but witness his enthusiasm first hand and you may struggle to question his sincerity.The Premiership champions are intent on making their mark not only in English rugby’s top flight but around the globe with Harvey now the driving force behind the Saracens Global Network – ‘nine rugby union clubs in five continents, sharing the same name, values and ambition’.Leading clubs in Brazil, Russia, Romania, Malaysia, Georgia, Tonga, Kenya, the UAE and the United States are all benefitting from Saracens’ expertise and desire to grow both the game and their brand.In it together: Saracens are unashamedly tryin to grow their global brand“We are shameless,” admits Harvey, who took the helm at Allianz Park last summer following the departure of Edward Griffiths, “we want people to know our brand around the world.”He added: “It is not a land grab or about getting to emerging territories first as I think there are enough of those in the game for everyone.“Our strategy with regards to our global network is to go where rugby is on the rise, into emerging markets where people need our help.”Harvey was speaking on the eve of his side’s Premiership clash with London Irish in New York City – the first competitive fixture to be staged outside of England.Sarries were playing a supporting role but it was one they were more than happy to accept given the opportunity to raise awareness of their own brand and bolster the work they are already doing in the country.“We have nine affiliate clubs around the world in the Saracens Global Network and Seattle Saracens are very much at the pinnacle of those nine clubs,” explained Harvey, who was fresh from a visit to the west coast.Irrepressable force: Saracens are going well domestically and in Europe“They are US champions and they are looking to us for help to take their game to the next level,” said Harvey, “but all the clubs look to us for different things.“In the case of Seattle, they may look to us for strength and conditioning expertise, video analysis or another advanced element of professional rugby and it is wonderful to go over there and see the appetite there is for rugby.”Saracens proved too strong for Irish in their showpiece fixture, claiming a 26-16 victory in front of 14,811 fans at the Red Bull Arena in New Jersey and they look set to return for a similar event next year.But a fondness for breaking the mould is something we have become used to with Saracens in recent years. LATEST RUGBY WORLD MAGAZINE SUBSCRIPTION DEALS TAGS: Saracens Grand horizons: Saracens, along with London Irish, were the first Premiership side to play outside England “What’s changed in the last three to six months is clubs have been contacting us,” he added. “It’s no longer us trying to grow the global network anymore.“If we stopped where we were today we would be very happy, but now we have got big clubs coming to us, saying that they can see the benefits of being part of our network and want to have a conversation – and that is really exciting.” “We have always been an innovative brand in rugby we have always pushed the envelope with big games at Wembley for example,” explained Harvey. “We have always taken on things that are perhaps slightly out of our league but look how much we have grown into it over the years.“Coming to New York was completely in our comfort zone. We didn’t need to be invited twice to help rugby grow in one of the key developing territories and markets.”Harvey is particularly excited by the potential offered by the United States to both his club and the sport in general but is aware that they both face a battle to establish themselves in an already crowded market.Record breakers: Saracens have long pushed the boundaries in the Premiership“It will always be hard to cut through American football, basketball, baseball and ice hockey but we also have plenty to cut through in the UK with Premier League football every week and that does not stop rugby being an incredible success,” he insists, “and I think the same thing is going to happen over here, it is only a matter of time.“Rugby will probably develop in pockets rather then nationally and it will probably on occasion take one step forward and two steps back. But rugby is a gladiatorial sport, it is hard and fast and an impressive spectacle, and there is a lot of that in American football too which people love.”So successful have been Saracens’ efforts to grow the game – and the club’s reputation – their reach stretches significantly beyond their Hendon home and even the extensive reach of the network.“We were down in Cape Town last month at one of the projects that we support,” explains Harvey. “Little kids were running up to us in the townships saying, ‘When I grow up I want to play for Saracens’ and this is in a country where rugby is a religion.”As heart-warming and welcome that adulation, there is another major, and arguably more important, by-product of their off-field endeavour.Foreign climes: Saracens headed out to Durban in South Africa in 2014“When I go into the city to talk to a potential new sponsor they don’t look at us and see just a north London rugby club only capable of reaching people within a 25 miles radius of our ground,” explains Harvey.“They acknowledge that we have a presence around the world. They say, ‘You have a club in Moscow, Kuala Lumpar, Brazil, USA and we have offices in a lot of those places too’. So we can leverage what we have to offer to a broader audience.”That translates into larger sponsorship deals and greater revenue. “It’s a genuine two-way street,” emphasised Harvey.It would also appear that the club that many would have you believe struggles to make friends could actually give relationship guidance. Fresh from their winning escapades in New Jersey, Saracens CEO Heath Harvey outlines the footprint they’re hoping to achieve and it goes far wider than Barnetlast_img read more

Action Cancer’s income up 12 per cent

first_img Donations also fell in the period, from £835,000 to £732,000 as did fundraising income (events etc) which was £1.15 million in 2011 and £1.14 in 2012. Trading income from the charities 13 shops, however, did increase to £990,000 from £908,000. Earned income grew from £131,000 to £224,000. Action Cancer’s fundraising costs grew from £988,000 to £1.1 million. The charity’s accounts show that it is in a strong financial position with free reserves of £1.8 million.www.actioncancer.org Action Cancer’s income up 12 per cent Northern Ireland cancer charity Action Cancer achieved a 12% increase in income between 2011 and 2012, according to its latest annual accounts. Total income for Action Cancer, which provides a range of early detection, counselling and prevention services, was £3.75 million in 2012, up from £3.3 million in 2011. Charitable income, mostly derived from fundraising was up, and earned upcome from services also increased. The bulk of the increase was down to an exceptionally large increase in legacies which went from £91,000 to £517,000 between 2011 and 2012. The increase in legacies made up for falls in other areas such as voluntary income which fell from £1.4 million to £1.1 million. Advertisement About Howard Lake Howard Lake is a digital fundraising entrepreneur. Publisher of UK Fundraising, the world’s first web resource for professional fundraisers, since 1994. Trainer and consultant in digital fundraising. Founder of Fundraising Camp and co-founder of GoodJobs.org.uk. Researching massive growth in giving.  17 total views,  2 views today AddThis Sharing ButtonsShare to TwitterTwitterShare to FacebookFacebookShare to LinkedInLinkedInShare to EmailEmailShare to WhatsAppWhatsAppShare to MessengerMessengerShare to MoreAddThiscenter_img AddThis Sharing ButtonsShare to TwitterTwitterShare to FacebookFacebookShare to LinkedInLinkedInShare to EmailEmailShare to WhatsAppWhatsAppShare to MessengerMessengerShare to MoreAddThis Tagged with: Giving/Philanthropy Ireland Northern Ireland Research / statistics Howard Lake | 5 March 2013 | Newslast_img read more

Holy Family Church: Divine Dinners – May 19

first_img The Divine Dinners Committee is excitedly gearing up for its Second “Divine Dinners Fundraising Event”, which will be held on Saturday, May 19. The first “Divine Dinners” Event was a spectacular success, due to the efforts, contributions, donations and participation of so many!Opportunities abound in one or more of the following areas:• Offer your hospitality by being a “Divine Dinner” Host• Support your Parish Community by becoming a “Divine Dinners” Patron• Donate items for our Silent and Live Auctions• Assist in procuring Auction Items• Volunteer to be a part of the excitement in any one of a myriad of ways!To become a patron, click here.Holy Family Church, 1501 Fremont Avenue, South Pasadena, (626) 799-8908 or visit www.holyfamily.org. Make a comment faithfernandez More » ShareTweetShare on Google+Pin on PinterestSend with WhatsApp,Virtual Schools PasadenaHomes Solve Community/Gov/Pub SafetyPASADENA EVENTS & ACTIVITIES CALENDARClick here for Movie Showtimes Name (required)  Mail (required) (not be published)  Website  Faith & Religion Events Holy Family Church: Divine Dinners – May 19 Published on Tuesday, March 27, 2012 | 4:16 pm 13 recommended0 commentsShareShareTweetSharePin it Pasadena Will Allow Vaccinated People to Go Without Masks in Most Settings Starting on Tuesday More Cool Stuff Get our daily Pasadena newspaper in your email box. Free.Get all the latest Pasadena news, more than 10 fresh stories daily, 7 days a week at 7 a.m. Top of the News Community Newscenter_img Business News Subscribe Community News Pasadena’s ‘626 Day’ Aims to Celebrate City, Boost Local Economy Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked * Herbeauty12 Most Breathtaking Trends In Fashion HistoryHerbeautyHerbeautyHerbeauty9 Of The Best Family Friendly Dog BreedsHerbeautyHerbeautyHerbeautyThe Most Heartwarming Moments Between Father And DaughterHerbeautyHerbeautyHerbeautyHe Is Totally In Love With You If He Does These 7 ThingsHerbeautyHerbeautyHerbeautyA 74 Year Old Fitness Enthusiast Defies All Concept Of AgeHerbeautyHerbeautyHerbeautyNerdy Movie Kids Who Look Unrecognizable TodayHerbeautyHerbeauty First Heatwave Expected Next Week EVENTS & ENTERTAINMENT | FOOD & DRINK | THE ARTS | REAL ESTATE | HOME & GARDEN | WELLNESS | SOCIAL SCENE | GETAWAYS | PARENTS & KIDS Home of the Week: Unique Pasadena Home Located on Madeline Drive, Pasadenalast_img read more

Foreclosures Levels Continue to Drop

first_imgSign up for DS News Daily Demand Propels Home Prices Upward 2 days ago The Best Markets For Residential Property Investors 2 days ago The Best Markets For Residential Property Investors 2 days ago The Week Ahead: Nearing the Forbearance Exit 2 days ago Data Provider Black Knight to Acquire Top of Mind 2 days ago About Author: Seth Welborn Data Provider Black Knight to Acquire Top of Mind 2 days ago Share Save September 23, 2019 3,378 Views Servicers Navigate the Post-Pandemic World 2 days ago Foreclosures Levels Continue to Drop Demand Propels Home Prices Upward 2 days ago Related Articlescenter_img Seth Welborn is a Reporter for DS News and MReport. A graduate of Harding University, he has covered numerous topics across the real estate and default servicing industries. Additionally, he has written B2B marketing copy for Dallas-based companies such as AT&T. An East Texas Native, he also works part-time as a photographer. Previous: Vellum Mortgage Implements Verification of Income and Employment Solution Next: Technology’s Role in Dealing with Disasters Tagged with: Delinquency Foreclosure Prepayment  Print This Post Delinquency Foreclosure Prepayment 2019-09-23 Seth Welborn Governmental Measures Target Expanded Access to Affordable Housing 2 days ago Home / Daily Dose / Foreclosures Levels Continue to Drop Mortgage performance improved in August, according to the First Look at the latest mortgage performance data from Black Knight.Black Knight states that foreclosure starts hit an 18-year low in August, at 36.2K for the month. Foreclosure starts were down over 23% from this time last year, and the the number of loans in active foreclosure, at 253K, is now the smallest it’s been since 2005.Additionally, prepayments increased by 5% from July to reach a three-year high, and August’s prepayment rate was up 62% from the same time last year and 2.5X the 18-year low we hit back in January. Black Knight also notes that despite a slight seasonal uptick in the number of loans 30 or more days past due, there was more growth in the number of active mortgages to offset this; as a result, the overall national delinquency rate declined slightly.ATTOM Data Solutions reported that one in every 2,554 U.S. properties received a foreclosure filing during the month of August. According to the analysis, the states with the worst foreclosure rates in August 2019 were Delaware (one in every 1,106 housing units); New Jersey (one in every 1,192 housing units); Maryland (one in every 1,218 housing units); Illinois (one in every 1,562 housing units); and Florida (one in every 1,633 housing units).In a previous Mortgage Monitor report, Black Knight Data & Analytics President Ben Graboske explains that falling interest rates and a subsequent increase in rate/term refinances has worked in servicers’ favor.“As we’ve reported in the past, retention rates tend to be higher for rate/term refinances than any other type of transaction, and that’s just what we observed as of the end of Q2 2019,” said Graboske. “Falling rates and an abundance of refinance candidates were primary drivers behind servicers retaining 24% of all refinancing borrowers – the highest such retention rate since late 2017 – and 30% of rate/term borrowers specifically. While losing the business of more than two out of every three rate-driven refinance customers is not exactly extraordinary performance, it is significantly better than the sub-20% retention rates seen throughout much of 2018. The good news is that interest rates are at three-year lows, and anecdotal evidence suggests that in recent weeks, mortgage lenders had been inundated with inbound refinance business that’s relatively easy to retain.”Black Knight will release its full Mortgage Monitor Report on October 7. in Daily Dose, Featured, Foreclosure, News Governmental Measures Target Expanded Access to Affordable Housing 2 days ago Servicers Navigate the Post-Pandemic World 2 days ago Subscribelast_img read more

COVID-19: One Year Later

first_img COVID-19: One Year Later About Author: David Wharton Sign up for DS News Daily Servicers Navigate the Post-Pandemic World 2 days ago David Wharton, Managing Editor at the Five Star Institute, is a graduate of the University of Texas at Arlington, where he received his B.A. in English and minored in Journalism. Wharton has over 16 years’ experience in journalism and previously worked at Thomson Reuters, a multinational mass media and information firm, as Associate Content Editor, focusing on producing media content related to tax and accounting principles and government rules and regulations for accounting professionals. Wharton has an extensive and diversified portfolio of freelance material, with published contributions in both online and print media publications. Wharton and his family currently reside in Arlington, Texas. He can be reached at [email protected] Data Provider Black Knight to Acquire Top of Mind 2 days ago Servicers Navigate the Post-Pandemic World 2 days ago in Daily Dose, Featured, Magazine, Print Features The Best Markets For Residential Property Investors 2 days ago Home / Daily Dose / COVID-19: One Year Later The Week Ahead: Nearing the Forbearance Exit 2 days ago Demand Propels Home Prices Upward 2 days ago Demand Propels Home Prices Upward 2 days ago Previous: Courts Find CDC Lacked Authority in Nationwide Moratorium on Evictions Next: Examining FHFA’s Commitment to Diversitycenter_img Editor’s note: This story first appeared in the April 2021 edition of DS News magazine.When the COVID-19 pandemic hit full force last March, mortgage lenders and servicers, as with many other businesses, were faced with a situation they had never encountered. Though the industry was very experienced when it came to dealing with natural disasters such as floods or hurricanes that would force office closures and otherwise impact business, those events were localized and limited in scope.The COVID-19 pandemic, however, was global. Even a year later, the battle against COVID-19 continues, although widespread vaccination has offered some sense that the end to the closed offices, reduced travel, and other pandemic-mandated measures may be on the horizon.“We’ve never gone through a pandemic before; everything was different,” said Brian Gould, SVP of Operations for Genworth Mortgage Insurance. “The thing that comes closest is a hurricane, but that is short-term … and the rebuild starts right away.”The pandemic resulted in the industry working within new forbearance and foreclosure rules, an unexpected jump in volume, the challenges of managing a largely remote staff, and an extremely long path back to some semblance of the previous industry environment. Some of the changes necessitated by COVID-19, however, are expected to become permanent.Home prices increased, while rates for 30-year fixed mortgages dropped nearly 100 basis points during the course of the year, according to Freddie Mac, driving refinancing demand.Joe Zeibert, Head of Global Mortgage Solutions for Nomis Solutions, explained, that adding to the complexity for the mortgage industry were more frequent price changes for loans due to swings in the underlying environment (loan risk factors, etc.).“Last year will go down as probably the best year in the history of mortgage lending in terms of not only the value but also the profit that was able to be manufactured during a period of time. It’s not something that could have been expected,” said Paul Buege, President and COO of Inlanta Mortgage.However, homeowners who had requested forbearance had to exit before being eligible, Gould said. So, lenders had to advise those homeowners how to cancel forbearance. Once someone had used it, even if only for a month, they had to make at least three timely payments before exiting. Before the pandemic driven rules, the homeowner in forbearance had to make 12 timely payments before exiting.“We’ve never experienced a shock of so many people going into forbearance at once,” Gould said.CHANGES IN FORBEARANCE, FORECLOSURESThe pandemic and resulting economic crisis resulted in foreclosure and eviction moratoria implemented at the federal, state, and local levels, many of which extended into 2021.In mid-February, the Department of Housing and Urban Development, Department of Veterans Affairs, and Department of Agriculture announced a coordinated extension and expansion of forbearance and foreclosure relief programs through June 30, including:Foreclosure moratoria for homeownersThe mortgage payment enrollment window for borrowers who wish to requestforbearanceUp to six months of additional mortgage payment forbearance, in three-month increments, for borrowers who entered forbearance on or before June 30, 2020.THE NECESSITY OF DIGITAL SOLUTIONSLenders and servicers who quickly embraced the shift in technology, or that had embraced digital solutions before the pandemic, tended to fare well, similar to during the 2007-2008 mortgage crisis, Zeibert said. The size of the organization didn’t matter as much as the technology culture itself.Historically, staff could be added or shifted to meet changes in industry volume. But last year’s surges were more than personnel alone could handle. Genworth had typically moved staff from the front end to the back end to help with forbearance surges, but the declining interest rates also meant that the volume was increasing for original and refinanced mortgages, Gould said. As such, the company had to shift people from other areas and rely more on technology to meet the demand.“I never can remember it being busy on the front end and the back end at the same time,” Gould said. “We also were proactive in asking for forbearance files for people in forbearance because we wanted to know ahead of time from a loss reserving standpoint and how many people needed help.”The industry had to quickly convert as many paper-based processes as possible to digital. Genworth used OCR technologies to automatically index recognized documents and extract data.“Accounting has historically been a paper-based system; we had to get more efficient,” said Brian Lynch, President of Advantage Systems. Providing an auto-sign capability on checks minimized the need for people to go to an office to physically sign. It was just one of many paperless options the industry and customers finally embraced, even though they weren’t new.“Until March, there were still a lot of mortgage applications being taken at the kitchen table,” added Joe Camerieri, EVP, Mortgage Cadence. “Then everything shifted to Zoom and phone calls. Overnight, everything went to consumer-direct. You were doing everything electronically not only to transact business, but also to source business.”Lenders and servicers mandated that vendors bill electronically. So rather than accepting a paper invoice, scanning it, and paying it, everything was handled electronically from end-to-end, eliminating paper. Lynch said, “With the hands-off approach, you can facilitate people working from home. That way, they are focused on their work, not on moving paper around.”“If we had to do this 10 years ago, we’d have failed,” said Stanley Middleman, CEO of Freedom Mortgage, who cited the internet, connectivity and various other technologies for aiding the industry in moving to remote work and handling the surge in volumes. “We were able to effectively communicate vertically, horizontally, with our peers, our subordinates, and our superiors,” Middleman said. “We were able to work with our regulators, our competitors, allies, and friends. All the people that we interface with have all come together as a community and really bonded to the satisfaction of the consumer.”“Though homebuyers briefly paused their activity at the start of the pandemic,” said Steven Plaisance, Interim President of Mortgage Banking for Gateway First Bank, “they were ‘resilient,’ actively buying homes and seeking new mortgages in the second half of the year.” Continued low interest rates meant refinance activity remained strong as well.Rick Seehausen, President and CEO of Cherry Creek Mortgage, credits his company’s proprietary loan origination system for the ability to be nimble and achieve the company’s best productivity ever. Volume doubled, but the company increased staff by only 15%. Even when activity spiked, loan processing time increased only slightly, from 21 days to 23 days.“I’ve been hearing about digitizing the mortgage process and electronic closings and have been involved in many committees and panels over the years, but it never got a lot of traction,” Seehausen said. “But this last year, for the first time, I think it did.”Closings still represented a bit of stumbling block, Seehausen added. “We had no problem originating loans, processing, underwriting, and closing them. We were just as efficient if not more so during the pandemic than we were pre-pandemic. But at the end of the day, if a borrower needs to get to a title company along with a seller and a real estate agent and notary, etc., face-to-face, it’s a challenge.Seehausen added that various fintech companies are developing solutions to solve the issue.Another challenge, Gould added, was income, employment, and other necessary documentation. Tax filings for individuals and businesses were delayed three months, from April 15 to July 15. Some related documentation was delayed as well. Many businesses laid off employees or terminated them, but some of the traditional electronic verification methods lagged in updating this information. The issue was even more pronounced for some of the self-employed, many of whose businesses were particularly hard hit by the pandemic.Genworth and other lenders had to rely on additional online research, as well as telephone verification, to confirm employment and other pertinent information, Gould said. Buege added that consumers have become more comfortable with digital verification of income as well as digital submission of personal documents.Inlanta embraced screen-sharing technology to help lender/servicers and consumers somewhat replicate the connection they would have if conducting business in a more traditional setting.Though now there are adequate safety protocols in place that a customer can come into the office, many still prefer conducting business remotely, Buege noted. “They have clearly shown us that mortgage, like so many other aspects of life today, is going online. They like that they don’t have to drive across town, have some coffee, do the application, then drive back home. The whole transaction is much quicker.”Similarly, lenders could handle more closings virtually because they weren’t wasting time driving from location to location, Buege said.TECHNOLOGY NEEDS OF REMOTE STAFFGenworth, Gateway, and others already had staff using laptops for some time before the pandemic hit. In that regard, they were better prepared than some others for staff to shift to work-from-home. However, some were challenged by slow internet connections. Genworth provided stipends to employees who needed to upgrade their internet speeds (if upgrades were available).Freedom Mortgage expected the declining interest rate environment and was concerned about some of the reports about COVID-19 as early as February, so they started buying staff laptops before the pandemic truly hit the nation.Middleman said, “We were able to make the transition almost immediately. We got way out ahead of a lot of this. … We certainly didn’t expect the social and political and physical turmoil that we saw. But we did expect the economy to have a hiccup because it was running too hot.”Since the company had added the laptops early and staff productivity was high, Freedom Mortgage was able to respond to the pandemic more quickly than if workers had still been in the office. Middleman said, “We took every possible step we could to deal with this on every possible level we could imagine.”Going digital was also a boon for Freedom Mortgage’s staffing needs. Middleman added, “We were able to expand our recruiting nationwide to fill our needs. What’s the difference if you’re talking to somebody via the phone, or Zoom, if they’re in California or Wyoming or Florida or Philadelphia? It didn’t really matter to us where anybody was. By becoming a mortgage company without boundaries, without a ceiling, we’re able to grow fantastically. We added thousands of people, and our system was set up to manage and train and equip. And we did it and remained almost 98% remote.”Communications between management and staff was critical as the pandemic first began, and remains so now as some lenders/servicers have started returning to the office.Gateway First Bank established a pandemic committee to help with the COVID-19-driven changes, said Steven Plaisance, Interim President of Mortgage Banking at Gateway. The committee helped the leadership team stay updated with the proper federal authorities and communicated to employees through the proper channels.The pandemic committee included representatives from each line of business. There is also a smaller subcommittee of five people. The subcommittee was charged with communicating about the business environment during different stages of the pandemic. The full pandemic committee would handle issues such as where Gateway stood in terms of forbearance, participation in Paycheck Protection Program, what to tell employees sent home to work remotely, etc.“We sent out over 300 communications,” said Melissa Bogle, Gateway’s VP of Marketing and Corporate Communications. “Some of those were informational on taking equipment home, updates on when we would bring you back, etc.”Ongoing communications were critical not only to maintain the Gateway culture, but also to helping employees who were used to the camaraderie of an office setting to dealing with the isolation of remote work, Bogle added.“I ran an executive meeting every morning, every day, for an hour, and tried to coach the executives about what I wanted them to do with the people that work for them,” Middleman said. “We problem-solved every day, and we had a new fire that we put out every day.”“We weren’t exactly sure what this was going to look like for our employees,” admitted Claudia Mobilia, SVP of Operations for Embrace Home Loans. Though a few were working remotely already, once the World Health Organization declared the pandemic, the company suddenly had 95% of its employees working remotely, providing a management challenge.Managers were accustomed to chatting with the staff about the workday and the events of the night before, working to build those relationships as well as discussing expectations for the day to come. Managers could also have informal discussions with employees, but the end of in-office work ended those common conversations.“One of the biggest single days,” Mobilia said.Cherry Creek implemented several management programs and management-development programs that have helped manage the remote workforce. Seehausen said, “Our view is that we would like to have an environment where people are back in the office. But we are respecting what we’re hearing, which ranges from ‘I love to work from home’ to ‘I can’t wait to get back to the office.’”MANAGING ISOLATIONLike other mortgage companies, Embrace Mortgage shifted to video streaming for management/staff meetings, opting to utilize Microsoft Teams (Zoom and Google Hangouts are other popular choices in the industry).“I think that helped ease the situation,” Mobilia said. “While I can’t come up to you and ask you how your day was yesterday or this morning, I can see you on a video, and I’ve learned to read the emotions of my teammates through video.”However, the video meetings tend to run longer than in-office meetings, Mobilia said. To avoid that, she said it’s essential to have a focused meeting agenda. She schedules her thrice-weekly meetings with her groups to be no more than 15 minutes long. Even so, she includes a short amount of time for personal discussion, replacing water-cooler discussions, which she says are important to include along with business purposes of any meeting.People who are sociable by nature were hardest hit by the change to remote work, Bogle said. Helping Gateway deal with the situation was the “Chief Fun Officer,” Hobie Higgins. He put out monthly videos with various updates, sometimes as often as weekly.“It was all about engagement,” Bogle said. “It was all about shout-outs to people, fun type of things, just so people still felt part of the organization. That was wildly successful.”The fun continued with Gateway’s private Facebook group, which would include various contests, complete with gift card prizes. Vogel added, “It was just another way of trying to keep people engaged with each other and take a break from everything that was going on.”Gateway also held several mental health webinars discussing issues like how to cope with working remotely. A virtual physician app made available to employees had a mental health component to it.LOOKING AHEADOnce most people are back in the office, Mobilia expects to have less-frequent virtual or in-office meetings. A hybrid meeting featuring remote and in-office workers doesn’t work too well, she added.While Embrace will have a larger percentage of staff work remotely when COVID-19 wanes than it did before the pandemic started, most entry-level workers, IT staff that maintain the equipment, and some others whose work dictate they be on site will be in the office, Mobilia said.Work will remain remote for many, however. Even those returning to the office are likely to go in only a few days a week, according to Lynch. “Management gets to reduce its footprint somewhat. It’s going to have major impact on in terms of how much they pay in rent.”Rent can be a major expense for organizations with multiple offices, Lynch added. Reducing that expense helps the bottom line.Another way lenders and servicers can control expenses is through technology, which enables better scalability and provides more reliability than loan officers, for example, because the latter can go to a competitor and take their business with them. Camerieri said, “The pandemic has neutralized the importance of the physical presence of human beings who source business in the marketplace. I think the pandemic has opened up the eyes of a lot of originators as looking at different ways to generate business.”Technology will also help lender/servicers maintain their profits as interest rates increase and margins tighten, Camerieri said. “Once you get into margin compression, it almost doesn’t matter how much volume you have coming in, really, if you’re not quick and nimble and have lower costs,” Zeibert added. “The lenders who have the technology to deliver the right price points to the right people at the right time will win. Those who don’t, will lose.”“Mortgage bankers are traditionally slow to hire and slow to fire,” Seehausen agreed. So those that have relied largely on people to handle the spike in volume in 2020 will be challenged if volume drops off as expected in the second half of 2021.One of the many technologies lenders were forced to embrace more during the pandemic was desktop appraisals, Camerieri added. While the technology alleviated the need for someone to physically visit theproperty, only time will tell if the savings will be worth the extra risk since there is no inspection of the inside of a home.The pandemic highlighted that mortgage customers are ready for a different type of experience. Buege added, “They want that high-touch, high-service experience. They want to get on the phone and to talk to a competent professional mortgage lender, but then they want [the mortgage] to be delivered to them in a digital experience. There’s no going back. The consumers have made their mark; they’ve shown the mortgage industry that they want a digital experience with that high-touch service. And that’s where our focus is going to be for the coming year.” Share Save April 1, 2021 2,574 Views  Print This Post Related Articles Governmental Measures Target Expanded Access to Affordable Housing 2 days ago Data Provider Black Knight to Acquire Top of Mind 2 days ago COVID-19 2021-04-01 David Wharton The Best Markets For Residential Property Investors 2 days ago Governmental Measures Target Expanded Access to Affordable Housing 2 days ago Tagged with: COVID-19 Subscribelast_img read more