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Inside Washington (02/15/2012)
  • WASHINGTON (2/16/12)--The Department of Housing and Urban Development (HUD) has withdrawn a proposal that would have allowed Farm Credit lenders to participate in the Federal Home Administration (FHA) home mortgage programs (American Banker Feb. 15). In a notice published in the Federal Register Monday that announced the withdrawal, HUD said that responses to the proposed rule were almost evenly split between supporters and opponents. Those in favor of the proposal said there is a need for credit in the rural farm system and that allowing Farm Credit lenders to offer FHA loans would help satisfy demand. Opponents say that community banks are meeting that need and if the scope of the FHA program broadened, it would increase government's role in the market, contrary to policymaker's intentions …
  • WASHINGTON (2/16/12)--An executive summary of the national mortgage settlement terms posted at provides highlights of the deal announced last week. The settlement requires the five banks to allocate a total of $17 billion in assistance to borrowers who have the intent and ability to stay in their homes while making reasonable payments on their mortgage loans. At least 60% of the $17 billion must be allocated to reduce the principal balance of home loans for borrowers who are in default or at risk of default on their loan payments. To assist homeowners who are not delinquent on their payments but cannot refinance to lower rates because of negative equity, the banks must offer refinance programs totaling at least $3 billion. The new standards will prevent mortgage servicers from engaging in robo-signing and other improper foreclosure practices. The standards will require banks to offer loss mitigation alternatives to borrowers before pursuing foreclosure …
  • WASHINGTON (2/16/12)--The Federal Reserve Board on Tuesday announced its approval of Capital One's proposal to acquire ING Bank. The newly formed organization would not pose a systemic risk to the financial system and would provide benefits such as greater convenience, increased competition, or gains in efficiency, the Fed said. The benefits outweigh the possible adverse effects, such as undue concentration of resources, decreased or unfair competition, conflicts of interests, unsound banking practices, or risk to the stability of the U.S. banking or financial system, the Fed said. The proposal would allow Capital One to offer more types products and services, such as fixed-rate, 30-year mortgage loans, full-access checking accounts, automobile loans, small-business loans, commercial loans, and credit card and other consumer loans--none of which are provided by ING, according to the Fed …
  • ST. PAUL, Minn. (2/16/12)--Representatives from Minnesota credit unions and the Minnesota Credit Union
    Click to view larger image Click for larger view
    Network (MnCUN) travelled to Washington, D.C., on Feb. 6-8 for the first-ever small business Hike the Hill event, coordinated by the Credit Union National Association. The delegation from Minnesota joined 75 other small business and credit union representatives from across the country to encourage federal legislators to support two bills that propose raising the credit union member business lending cap from 12.25% to 27.5%. In Minnesota, lifting the cap would amount to the creation of 2,000 jobs and would make an additional $150 million available to lend to the state's small businesses. In the photo, representatives from Minnesota credit unions and MnCUN met with Rep. John Kline (R) (Photo provided by Minnesota Credit Union Network) …
  • WASHINGTON (2/16/12)--The Federal Deposit Insurance Corporation (FDIC) Wednesday reported a new phishing scam that is using the agency's name in an attempt to defraud accountholders. The emails generally inform accountholders that their ACH and Wire transaction abilities have been temporarily withheld because their "security version" has expired. The emails then provide a link through which accountholders can download and install "updated installations." This e-mail and link are fraudulent, and recipients should consider the intent of this e-mail as an attempt to collect personal or confidential information, or to load malicious software onto end users' computers, the FDIC said…
  • WASHINGTON (2/16/12)--The Consumer Financial Protection Bureau (CFPB) this week published information on service contract actions the agency took in 2011. The CFPB said the information is "organized by function to show how contracted resources were used by the agency to support its mission." The document was published in the Federal Register


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