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The Pulse

Rep. Barney Frank introduces Obama Administration’s plan to increase consumer protection
House Financial Services Committee Chairman Rep. Barney Frank (D-MA) has formally introduced President Barack Obama’s plan to strengthen consumer protections as a part of a broader financial regulatory restructuring. HR 3126 would... Read more
HUD announces $26.5 million available in sweat equity grants
U.S. Housing and Urban Development (HUD) Secretary Shaun Donovan has announced that $26.5 million is available in "sweat equity" grants to produce homes for low-income individuals and families through HUD's Self-Help Homeownership... Read more
Financial survey concludes: Only 21 percent of Americans trust the financial system
A sense of optimism and a reduction in fear and anger toward America’s financial institutions mark the latest findings in the Chicago Booth/Kellogg School Financial Trust Index. According to the report published, trust in financial... Read more
Appraisal Institute applauds Freddie Mac’s revised guidelines
The Appraisal Institute, the nation’s largest real estate appraisal organization, has applauded Freddie Mac’s newly revised guidelines for mortgage lenders emphasizing the use of qualified and experienced real estate appraisers. Revisions... Read more
NAHB: Faulty appraisal process harming housing and the economy
Twenty-six percent of builders are seeing signed sales contracts fall through the cracks because appraisals on their homes are coming in below the contract sales price, according to a nationwide survey conducted by the National Association... Read more
FHA to begin insuring hospital refinance loans
U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development (HUD) Secretary Shaun Donovan has announced that HUD's Federal Housing Administration (FHA) will now provide mortgage loan insurance for hospital refinancing. Prior to this, hospitals could... Read more
Reps. Waters and Frank introduce new flood insurance legislation
House Financial Services Housing Subcommittee Chairwoman Rep. Maxine Waters (D-CA) and Committee Chairman Rep. Barney Frank (D-MA) have introduced new legislation to authorize the National Flood Insurance Program (NFIP) through March 31,... Read more
FHFA releases first Five-Year Strategic Plan
Federal Housing Finance Agency Director (FHFA) James B. Lockhart has released the Agency’s first Strategic Plan since FHFA was created nearly one year ago in the Housing and Economic Recovery Act (HERA). The plan details the goals and... Read more
HUD aims to stamp out homelessness in the U.S.
U.S. Housing and Urban Development (HUD) Secretary Shaun Donovan has awarded $1.2 billion to over 400 communities across the nation to rapidly re-house families who fall into homelessness, or prevent them from becoming homeless in the... Read more
FBI reports mortgage fraud increases in 2008-2009
A Federal Bureau of Investigations (FBI) report released this week says that mortgage fraud cost U.S. lenders more than $1 billion in 2008, and will cost lenders even more in 2009. Financial institutions reported 63,713 incidents of... Read more