Wednesday, April 13, 2011

Housing News Digest, April 13

Big banks are government-backed: Fed's Hoenig

CHARLOTTE, North Carolina (Reuters) - Big banks like Bank of America Corp and Citigroup Inc should be reclassified as government-sponsored entities and have their activities restricted, a senior Fed official said on Tuesday.
The 2008 bank bailouts at the height of the financial crisis and other implicit guarantees effectively make the largest U.S. banks government-guaranteed enterprises, like mortgage finance companies Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac, said Kansas City Fed President Thomas Hoenig.

Inflation Actually Near 10% Using Older Measure
After former Federal Reserve Chairman Paul Volcker was appointed in 1979, the consumer price index surged into the double digits, causing the now revered Fed Chief to double the benchmark interest rate in order to break the back of inflation. Using the methodology in place at that time puts the CPI back near those levels.

Colorado to block new real estate investment scheme
SUMMIT COUNTY — Colorado lawmakers are moving to join other states in blocking one of the newest unsavory real estate schemes to emerge after the collapse of the bubble.
Senate Bill 11-234 would ban private real estate transfer fees, which have been added to homeowner association covenants during the development phase to fund an investment scheme cooked up by Manhattan-based Freehold Capitol Partners.

Rifts Continue to Surface Around Robo-Signing Settlement
The regulators’ terms include tighter quality controls to ensure foreclosure procedures are properly followed and independent reviews of 2009 and 2010 cases, as well as changes to the way servicers deal with delinquent homeowners, including providing a single point-of-contact through loss mitigation talks and halting foreclosure actions while negotiations for a loan modification are in process.

Denver-area luxury home sales rise
The greater Denver luxury home market continues to rebound as March sales figures increased over the previous month and over the same month last year, according to statistics from Metrolist Inc. Tuesday.

Grubb & Ellis out of compliance with NYSE
Grubb & Ellis (NYSE: GBE) said it’s been notified that the commercial real estate brokerage is out of compliance with the New York Stock Exchange’s listing standards, according to media reports.