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Finance, Economy & Government Issues Archive


Small Banks See Stronger Demand for MF Loans, but Tighten Standards

The Federal Reserve Board recently released its survey of senior bank loan officers. The October 2014 Senior Loan Officer Opinion Survey on Bank Lending Practices (SLOOS) addressed changes in the standards and terms on, and demand for, bank loans to businesses and households over the third quarter of ...


The Bigger Drag on Homeownership: Down Payments or Debt?

The affordability of housing has been on the tip of everyone's tongue as of late. With many things shifting in the industry, some experts talk about the lowering of required down payments. RealtyTrac recently analyzed affordability in512 U.S. counties with a combined population ...


‘Zombie’ Foreclosures Down 23 Percent from Last Year, but Increase in 16 States

RealtyTrac® today released its Q3 2014 “Zombie” Foreclosure Report, which found that 117,298 homes actively in the foreclosure process had been vacated by the homeowners prior to a completed foreclosure, representing 18 percent of all active foreclosures. ...


Home Prices Rise in August

Home prices rose slightly at 0.2% in August, slower than the 0.6% rise in July, according to the S&P/Case-Shiller 20-city composite index released Tuesday. However, data through August 2014, released this week in the S&P/Case-Shiller Home Price Indices, continue to show a deceleration ...


Short Sales and Foreclosure Sales Account for Lowest Sale Levels Since 2011

RealtyTrac® recently released its September and Q3 2014 Residential & Foreclosure Sales Report, which shows that U.S. residential properties, including single family homes, condominiums and townhomes, sold at an estimated annual pace of ...


Consumer Confidence Surges in October

The Conference Board Consumer Confidence Index®, which had decreased in September, rebounded in October. The Index now stands at 94.5, up from 89.0 in September. The Present Situation Index edged up from 93.0 to 93.7, while the Expectations Index increased sharply to 95.0 from 86.4 in September. ...


By the Numbers: Big Cities You Can Actually Afford to Live In

Big cities are known for having more job opportunities, people to meet, and things to do than small towns. On the flip side, they are also synonymous with traffic, crime, and—above all—high costs. That’s why a big city with ...


‘Seriously’ Underwater Properties at Lowest Level in Two Years

RealtyTrac®, a leading source for comprehensive housing data, today released its U.S. Home Equity & Underwater Report for the third quarter of 2014, which shows that 8.1 million U.S. residential properties were seriously underwater—where the combined loan amount secured by the property is ...


Existing-Home Sales Rise 2.4% in September

After a modest decline last month, existing-home sales bounced back in September to their highest annual pace of the year, according to the National Association of Realtors®. All major regions except for the Midwest experienced gains in September. ...


Mortgage Rates Hit New 2014 Lows

Freddie Mac recently released the results of its Primary Mortgage Market Survey® (PMMS®), showing average fixed mortgage rates hitting new lows for the year as 10-year bond yields briefly dipped below 2 percent. At 3.97 percent the average 30-year fixed rate is at ...


U.S Regulators Ready for Relaxed Mortgage Rules

Later this week, after several years of back-and-forth debate, U.S. regulators are finally set to finalize a more relaxed set of mortgage standards. This new set of rules will be a win for the real estate industry, with the projected agreement much more ...


Home Equity Loans Surge amid Record-low Rates

The housing market seems to be on the right track. The origination of home equity lines of credit (Helocs) hit a five-year high this year as a result of low interest rates, rising home prices, and increasing consumer confidence in the trajectory of the market.  But while it’s a great ...


More American Households Doubling Up as Rents Rise

An increasing number of American adults are moving in together to share expenses as rental rates continue to outpace income, according to a new Zillow analysis. ...


America’s Lost Equity Comes Home

In the dark months from 2007 to 2009, home values were in free fall and millions of homeowners lost equity in their homes.  America lost 12.7 trillion dollars’ worth of homeowners’ equity during those years, equal to more the three quarters of the national Gross Domestic Product. ...


Ranked: Best U.S. Markets for Buying Residential Rental Properties

RealtyTrac® recently released its Q3 2014 Residential Property Rental Report, which ranks the best markets for buying residential rental properties. ...


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