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Inside Washington (11/21/2007)
* WASHINGTON (11/26/07)--California Gov. Arnold Schwarzenegger Tuesday announced his plan to stop foreclosures in California. The governor said he has made an agreement with lenders, including Countrywide Financial Corp., GMAC, Litton and HomeEq to “fast track” loan modifications. His proposal is based on a suggestion made by Federal Deposit Insurance Corp. Chairman Sheila Bair that financial institutions should lock borrowers’ interest rates (American Banker Nov. 21). Meanwhile, Office of Thrift Supervision (OTS) Director John Reich suggested that loan servicers and thrifts should extend starter interest rates for periods of up to three years to help subprime hybrid mortgage borrowers. Unlike Schwarzenegger’s broader approach, Reich advocated for modifying loans case-by-case and then limiting modifications to hybrid mortgages only. As an incentive, OTS would also provide $500 per loan to servicers who modify mortgages … * WASHINGTON (11/26/07)--Weakness in the housing and credit markets caused earnings in the thrift industry to drop 84% from one year ago to $704 million during the third quarter, the Office of Thrift Supervision (OTS) reported Tuesday. Net income also is down 82% from $3.83 billion in the last quarter. Despite the drop, OTS Director John Reich said he is encouraged that managers of OTS-regulated institutions are taking the right steps “to provide a cushion for the future” …


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