Countrywide Financial

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Big Banks Agree to $8.5B in Mortgage Settlement

Banks agree to $8.5B deal with regulators, as BofA gives Fannie $10B

(Newser) - A group of 10 major lenders has agreed to pay federal regulators $8.4 billion to settle claims of foreclosure "robo-signings" and other abuses, the New York Times reports. Among the lenders onboard are JPMorgan Chase, Citibank, and Bank of America. About $3.3 billion of that will go... More »

Bank of America Is a Crime Syndicate

Matt Taibbi: It's 'ripping off virtually everyone'

(Newser) - Matt Taibbi gives Bank of America the " vampires squid " treatment today, savaging "the ultimate Too Big to Fail bank" as "a hypergluttonous ward of the state whose limitless criminal conspiracies we'll all be paying for until the end of time," in a lengthy Rolling ... More »

4 House Members Scored Countrywide VIP Deals

Issa calls for ethics probe of lawmakers who received discounted loans

(Newser) - At least four current members of the House of Representatives received discounted loans under Countrywide Financial's VIP program, according to Rep. Darrell Issa. The Republican chairman of the House Oversight Committee did not name the lawmakers who received sweetened deals from the now defunct lender—whose subprime mortgages were... More »

AIG Sues Bank of America in Attempt to Recover Billions

Says it was misled about quality of mortgage-backed securities

(Newser) - With the Justice Department filing few criminal charges related to the financial crisis, AIG is taking action of its own: The mostly taxpayer-owned firm is preparing to sue Bank of America for allegedly misleading it about the quality of Bank of America's mortgage-backed securities—an accusation that gets to... More »

Bank of America Agrees to $8.5B Settlement

With another $8.5B to come

(Newser) - Bank of America has, as expected , reached an agreement for an $8.5 billion settlement with a group of disgruntled investors who lost truckloads of money buying mortgage-backed securities from Countrywide Financial, the bank announced today. It’s the largest payoff yet from a financial services firm, the Wall Street ... More »

Bank of America 'Hindered' Feds' Investigation

Company refused to let employees answer questions, allow walk-through

(Newser) - Given the chance to come clean on its robo-signing scandal, Bank of America instead dug in its heels and “significantly hindered” the federal investigation of its foreclosure practices, according to a HUD official. According to the official's sworn statement filed in Arizona court, BofA lawyers refused “on... More »

BofA Forgiving $3B in Mortgage Debt

45K 'underwater' borrowers to be offered reduction

(Newser) - Bank of America is offering to slash mortgage-loan balances by up to 30% for thousands of delinquent borrowers who owe more than their homes are worth. The plan—part of an agreement to settle a lending-abuse suit—is one of the most ambitious moves yet to ease the foreclosure crisis,... More »

Dodd, Conrad Cleared But Scolded in Mortgage Probe

(Newser) - Chris Dodd and Kent Conrad have been cleared of wrongdoing in taking preferred loans from Countrywide Financial, the Hill reports. But the Senate ethics panel gave both Democrats slaps on the wrist. No “credible evidence” of ethics violations emerged, the committee said in a statement, but two “should... More »

Dodd, Conrad 'Knew They Scored Mortgage Deals'

(Newser) - Democratic Sens. Chris Dodd and Kent Conrad were fully aware they were getting sweetened mortgage deals, the Countrywide Financial exec who handled their loans has told congressional investigators. The testimony from the loan officer to the House Oversight and Senate Ethics committees directly contradicts the senators' assertions that they had... More »

SEC May Charge Mozilo of Countrywide With Fraud

(Newser) - The long slide from the top continues for former Countrywide chief Angelo Mozilo. Staffers at the SEC have recommended filing a civil suit against him on charges of fraud and insider trading, reports the Los Angeles Times. Countrywide had been the nation’s largest mortgage lender before it nearly went... More »

Bankers Blamed for Mess Get Rich Cleaning It Up

(Newser) - The irony is, well, rich. Former executives of Countrywide Financial—the bank whose risky loans to homeowners have become synonymous with the subprime mess—are now making a mint helping the government fix things, the New York Times reports. A dozen former Countrywide executives, including President Stanford L. Kurland, have... More »

'Choose-a-Charter' System Lets Banks Dodge Regulation

(Newser) - A loophole in the nation’s banking regulations allows institutions to switch their charters from federal to state, effectively allowing them to decide which regulatory agencies supervise them, reports the Washington Post. Regulatory reform is at the top of Treasury Secretary-designate Tim Geithner's agenda. Of the 200-plus banks that have... More »

BofA Settles Loan Lawsuits With $8.4B Aid to Borrowers

400,000 homeowners who borrowed from Countrywide could see relief

(Newser) - Some 400,000 borrowers with subprime and adjustable-rate mortgages from Countrywide Financial are in line to receive a share of an $8.4-billion settlement in a suit over deceptive loan practices, reports the Wall Street Journal. The deal between Bank of America, which acquired Countrywide July 1, and several state... More »

Bank of America CEO Lands His Biggest Fish Yet

Merrill bid puts bold Lewis over $150B in acquisitions

(Newser) - Like predecessor Hugh McColl, Bank of America CEO Kenneth Lewis loves enormous deals. His 7-year reign has seen flashy conquests adding up to more than $150 billion, but never has he bagged a bigger trophy than Merrill Lynch, Reuters reports. The deal should fulfill Lewis’ oft-frustrated ambition to make BofA,... More »

Heeeeeeeeere's Donald!

Trump bails out Ed McMahon

(Newser) - Billionaire Donald Trump is giving a helping hand to 85-year-old Ed McMahon, who was about to lose his Beverly Hills home to foreclosure. Trump is buying the 6-bedroom house, listed at $4.6 million, and leasing the property back to McMahon so he can continue to live there, the Los ... More »

Heeeeeeeeeeeeere's a Lawsuit!

$200K suit adds to McMahon's financial woes

(Newser) - Citibank has filed suit against former Johnny Carson sidekick Ed McMahon to recover $200,000 it loaned to the struggling actor, the AP reports. McMahon, 85, who has not worked since falling 18 months ago, also faces foreclosure on his Beverly Hills home. “If you spend more money than... More »

Countrywide 'Bailout' Is Dem Chicanery

Left is extending crisis by irresponsibly aiding its pals, Armey says

(Newser) - Congressional Dems are selling their $300 billion bill granting new taxpayer loan guarantees as a boon to homeowners, but Dick Armey sees more cynical motives in the “bailout” legislation. The former House majority leader writes in the Journal, pegging the recent revelations of sweetheart Countrywide loans for top (Dem)... More »

GOP Hesitates on Call for Mortgage Probe

Lawmakers wary of unearthing more Countrywide ties

(Newser) - GOP lawmakers are leery of investigating mortgage deals Countrywide may have arranged for members of Congress, even though a fellow Republican is leading the charge, Politico reports. More Democratic ties to the troubled lender would give the GOP ammo in a cycle seemingly stacked against it—but the people who... More »

Countrywide Scandal Extends to Senate

Troubled mortgage lender gave breaks to Dodd, other VIPs

(Newser) - Countrywide Financial made sweetheart deals for lawmakers and other high-profile pols who received mortgages from the disgraced lender, a Portfolio exposé reveals. The deals, which appear to violate both company rules and federal law, benefited "Friends of Angelo"—as in CEO Angelo Mozilo—including at least two US... More »

Bank of America Posts 77% Dive on $6B in Writedowns

Writedowns pack bigger punch than analysts expected

(Newser) - More than $6 billion in subprime writedowns sent Bank of America profits skidding for the third straight quarter today, as the nation's second-largest bank posted a 77% decline in net income for the first quarter. Earnings were $1.21 billion, down from $5.26 billion a year ago, reports Bloomberg.... More »

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