With interest rates up sharply from the lows and Blackstone and other private equity firms holding billions of dollars with of properties with no one to sell to, the time is ripe for a little muppet fleecing. Leading the charge to find new tax-payer backed subprime loans to take some properties off the hands of Mr. Schwarzman is none other than Wells Fargo. I previously forecasted this in my piece: Stage Two of the Housing Bubble Begins: Blackstone to Lend to Others for “Buy to Rent.”
They aren’t the only ones though. Citadel Servicing Corp, the country’s biggest subprime lender, is also getting in the action. The best and worst part of this story is the way these new loans are being marketed. Specifically, as “Low Credit Score Debt Consolidation Program” as well as a “Second Chance Purchase Program.”
This Central Bankster game isn’t complicated. Provide access to cheap funds to financial cronies, pump the bubble, fleece the serfs. Rinse. Repeat.
(Reuters) – Wells Fargo & Co, the largest U.S. mortgage lender, is tiptoeing back into subprime home loans again.
The bank is looking for opportunities to stem its revenue decline as overall mortgage lending volume plunges. It believes it has worked through enough of its crisis-era mortgage problems, particularly with U.S. home loan agencies, to be comfortable extending credit to some borrowers with higher credit risks.
So far few other big banks seem poised to follow Wells Fargo’s lead, but some smaller companies outside the banking system, such as Citadel Servicing Corp, are already ramping up their subprime lending. To avoid the taint associated with the word “subprime,” lenders are calling their loans “another chance mortgages” or “alternative mortgage programs.”
It is looking at customers with credit scores as low as 600. Its prior limit was 640, which is often seen as the cutoff point between prime and subprime borrowers. U.S. credit scores range from 300 to 850.
Lenders remain cautious in part because of financial reform rules. Under the 2010 Dodd-Frank law, mortgage borrowers must meet eight strict criteria including earning enough income and having relatively low debt. If the borrower does not meet those hurdles and later defaults on a mortgage, he or she can sue the lender and argue the loan should never have been made in the first place.
Subprime mortgages were at the center of the financial crisis, but many lenders believe that done with proper controls, the risks can be managed and the business can generate big profits.
Still, Wells Fargo isn’t just opening up the spigots. The bank is looking to lend to borrowers with weaker credit, but only if those mortgages can be guaranteed by the FHA, Codel said. Because the loans are backed by the government, Wells Fargo can package them into bonds and sell them to investors.
Taxpayers lose again.
The funding of the loans is a key difference between Wells Fargo and other lenders: the big bank is packaging them into bonds and selling them to investors, but many of the smaller, nonbank lenders are making mortgages known as “nonqualified loans” that they are often holding on their books.
Citadel Servicing Corp, the country’s biggest subprime lender, is trying to change that. It plans to package the loans it has made into bonds and sell them to investors.
Citadel has lent money to people with credit scores as low as 490 – though they have to pay interest rates above 10 percent, far above the roughly 4.3 percent that prime borrowers pay now.
But smaller, non-bank lenders are making more loans. One such company, ACC Mortgage in Maryland, is offering a “Low Credit Score Debt Consolidation Program” as well as a “Second Chance Purchase Program.” Low credit scores don’t matter. Neither do bankruptcies, foreclosures or short sales.
Happy Valentine’s Day Stephen Schwarzman.
Full article here.
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