Personal Travel Managers Cruising into 2019

first_imgPTMs were treated to a three-course onboard lunch and ship inspection as part of their training dayPersonal Travel Managers Cruising into 2019When the Majestic Princess, the newest vessel of the Princess fleet, sailed into Sydney Harbour in early December, she provided a stunning venue for the third of a series of Cruise Masterclass days attended by personal travel managers (PTMs) in Sydney, Melbourne and Brisbane.A total of 111 PTMs attended the training days, which were organised by TravelManagers’ National Partnership Office (NPO) and scheduled to coincide with the company’s final round of state meetings for the year – a convenient concurrence that was welcomed by the PTMs during a busy time of year.“As a regional personal travel manager, travelling to Sydney to attend product training sessions is not always possible,” explains Debra Deane, who is representative for Port Macquarie, NSW. “TravelManagers are amazing at bringing product training to PTMs wherever are based, but in this instance, I was thrilled to have the opportunity to attend a cruise master class on board the stunning Majestic Princess and expand my cruise knowledge in the process.”Princess Cruises’ Grand-Class ship, the Golden Princess, provided the venue for TravelManagers’ Melbourne cruise master classPrincess Cruises also provided the venue for the Melbourne cruise master-class, which was held aboard the Golden Princess, while PTMs in Brisbane spent the day on Norwegian Cruise Lines’ (NCL) Norwegian Jewel. Attendees at all three master classes received updates on the ten different cruise lines and 100 cruise ships fall under the World’s Leading Cruise Lines (WLCL) consortium, of which Princess Cruises and NCL are both members.PTM Sue Wright travelled to Brisbane from Shoal Point, QLD, to attend both the cruise master class and the state meeting.“The master class provided a wonderful opportunity to see the Norwegian Jewel first-hand and having just undergone a multi-million-dollar refurbishment she is looking very impressive!” says Wright, who describes herself as a big fan of cruise holidays. “Spending time on board the ship has reminded me what a terrific holiday experience cruising can be and I am so looking forward to sharing the latest developments in cruising with my clients.”TravelManagers’ Executive General Manager, Michael Gazal, says many PTMs travelled considerable distances to attend the cruise master classes, and were appreciative of the opportunity to combine two very enjoyable and rewarding days.“We are very fortunate to have wonderful support from partner suppliers such as Princess and NCL, who provided us with the best possible venues in which to hold our cruise master classes,” Gazal explains. “With the opportunity to experience these ships first-hand and enjoy a three-course lunch while on board, it’s no wonder that PTMs came from as far away as Wagga Wagga and Parkes to participate.”For more information or to speak to someone confidentially about TravelManagers please contact Suzanne Laister on 1800 019 599. About TravelManagersTravelManagers operates in all Australian States and is a wholly owned subsidiary of House of Travel, Australasia’s largest independent travel company which has a forecast turnover of $1.8 billion for 2018. TravelManagers is a sister company to Hoot Holidays, also owned by House of Travel, and has more than 550 personal travel managers throughout Australia with a dedicated support team at the company’s national partnership office in Sydney. TravelManagers places all customer money in a dedicated and audited Client Trust Account which is separate from the general business accounts, ensuring client funds are secure and only used for client purchases. Source = TravelManagerslast_img read more

FCM KPMGs whitepaper highlights key businesstravel technologies

first_imgFCM Travel Solutions, the Indian subsidiary of Flight Centre Travel Group (FCTG), Australia and KPMG released an analytical whitepaper titled ‘The Digi-Smart Indian Business Traveller’ revealing insights on disrupting technologies in the travelindustry and their impact on corporate travel.It detailed on key business-travel technologies that balance cost control, enhanced compliance and meeting the business traveller expectations which includes self-booking tool, artificial intelligence, shared-economy, travel analytics and blockchaintechnology. Other potential technological solutions include cloud passports, electronic bag tags, virtual reality, wearables, digital wallets and tickets, NFC, etc.The report highlighted three potential disruptions such as hyperloop, cloud based guest reservation system and SpaceX (anywhere on the earth in one hour) can potentially address two most common business traveller concerns, viz., time and cost for the Indian travel market.The government as part of its “Digital India” initiative needs to enhance the quality of the digital and physical infrastructure to keep pace with the changing needs of Indian as well as global business travellers, asserts the research. The whitepaper also asserted on how growing smartphone, internet and digital networking penetration combined with ever-growing plethora of online travelchoices accessible have made technology a part of a business traveller’s DNA. Business travellers are increasingly veering towards technology for virtually all answers for their travel needs.Highlight the impact of digital technology in travel, Rakshit Desai, Managing Director, FCM Travel Solutions, Indian subsidiary of FCTG, Australia, said, “Rapid penetration of smartphones, self-booking tools, travel analytics, artificial intelligence and sharing economy services are not only here to stay but hold myriad and exciting possibilities for the future.”Jaideep Ghosh, Partner and Head, Transport, Leisure and Sports, KPMG in India commented, “Globally, technology has penetrated deep into business travel practices and India is also witnessing a gradual rise in the adoption of these technological advancements.”last_img read more

Ethiopian Airlines to commence thriceweekly service to NosyBe Madagascar

first_imgThe largest aviation group in Africa and SKYTRAX certified Four-Star Global Airline, Ethiopian Airlines announced that it will commence the thrice-weekly service to Nosy-Be, Madagascar from March 27, 2018. The route will be operated with a Boeing 737-800, one of the youngest fleet with an average age of five years.An island off the northwest coast of Madagascar, Nosy-Be is the largest and busiest tourist resort of the island nation. Its white sandy beaches, blue-green seas and astonishing rich undersea life make it a perfect destination for diving, fishing, cruise trips and much more.Regarding the planned launch of the service, Tewolde Gebremariam, Group CEO, Ethiopian Airlines, said, “We are very happy to commence flights to Nosy-Be, our second gateway in Madagascar after Antananarivo. Nosy Be is one of the most beautiful tourist destinations in Africa and will widen the menu of leisure destination choices for tourists from all over the world. In line with our Vision 2025, we will continue to expand and deepen our footprint in Africa with a view to supporting the growth of tourism, business, trade and investment between the continent and the rest of the world.”last_img read more

Banks Lose Big Over Bad MBS Numerous Suits

first_imgBanks Lose Big Over Bad MBS, Numerous Suits in Data, Government, Origination, Secondary Market, Servicing Agents & Brokers Attorneys & Title Companies Bank Failure Bank of America Citigroup Fannie Mae FHFA Freddie Mac Investment Investors Lenders & Servicers Mortgage Fraud Mortgage-Backed Securities Processing Service Providers Wells Fargo 2011-09-16 Ryan Schuette September 16, 2011 438 Views center_img Even as the good news emerged that fewer banks are failing countrywide, “”_Bloomberg News_””:http://www.businessweek.com/news/2011-09-16/mortgage-debacle-costs-banks-66-billion-as-suits-sap-profit.html found that the nation’s biggest lenders have lost some $65.7 billion in bad mortgage-backed securities, with billions in the red. A number of suits by mortgage lenders, one against the other, plus a barrage of action to recover losses for “”Fannie Mae””:http://www.fanniemae.com/kb/index?page=home and “”Freddie Mac””:http://www.freddiemac.com/ suggest more losses may be in store for U.S. financial institutions.[IMAGE]_Bloomberg_ compiled the data by adding up the sum total of gains and losses from financial statements and regulatory filings.What did the news service find?Of the nation’s biggest lenders, “”Bank of America””:https://www.bankofamerica.com/ saw the most red, with $39.1 billion in dollars never seen again since January 2007. _Bloomberg_ ranked several other lenders after, with “”JPMorgan Chase””:http://www.jpmorganchase.com/corporate/Home/home.htm suffering a $16.3-billion hit and “”Wells Fargo””:https://www.wellsfargo.com/ oozing $5.09 billion as a result of securitized loans that went bust during the financial crisis.According to the news service, “”Ally Financial Inc.””:https://www.ally.com/index.html?CP=ppc130830 and “”Citigroup Inc.””:http://www.citigroup.com/citi/homepage/ followed the big three with $3.28 billion and $1.9 billion in losses. Unequal capital positions in the marketplace meant that some banks hurt more than others, with Wells Fargo, third on the list, and Citigroup, ranking fifth, both placing first and third among mortgage lenders with the most assets nationwide.The share of culpability for the financial crisis waxes even more unequal for other lenders. [COLUMN_BREAK]_Bloomberg_ quoted Paul Miller, a onetime bank examiner, now an analyst with “”FBR Capital Markets & Co.””:http://www.fbr.com/, as saying that Bank of America, Wells Fargo, JPMorgan, and Ally will absorb 60 percent of expenses in faulty loans and litigation, with the former shedding capital to cover 33 percent of the overall costs.The cost breakdown arrives amid a flurry of suits to recoup the losses. On Thursday Wells Fargo “”pressed its advantage””:https://themreport.com/articles/latest-suit-adds-to-mbs-woes-for-jpmorgan-chase-2011-09-15 against JPMorgan Chase by filing suit to ensure that the latter repurchases the bad mortgage-backed securities that have afflicted the lender.In early September the “”Federal Housing Finance Agency””:http://www.fhfa.gov/ (FHFA) opened up a “”staggering 17 suits””:https://themreport.com/articles/fhfa-may-sue-mortgage-giants-over-mbs-losses-2011-09-02 to recover some $41 billion in losses for Fannie and Freddie, according to the _Los Angeles Times_.Federal officials are claiming that a system tanked by systemic and fraudulent activity needs to account and cover the losses.””You’re not talking about improperly stapling together two documents, you’re talking about systematic fraud in the system,”” _Bloomberg_ quoted Neil Barofsky, the former special inspector general for the Troubled Asset Relief Program, as saying. “”What this shows is that before the financial crisis, the banks were essentially lying to the purchasers of the mortgages about the quality.””Other market watchers insist that the financial losses confer a setback upon the economy at large as more lenders pay out in expensive litigation.Speaking with _MReport_ for a past story, “”Tim Rood””:http://www.collingwoodllc.com/team.html, a managing partner with the “”Collingwood Group””:http://www.collingwoodllc.com/index.html and a past principal for Fannie Mae, shared his views about the bigger picture.””You have a lot of unintended consequences from these moves,”” he said. He explained that mortgage lenders could find themselves more prone to market risk and insolvency as a consequence of tens of billions of dollars in litigation costs.””If we go after these guys, we should be a bit more thoughtful about how this will help the economy,”” Rood told _MReport_. Sharelast_img read more

Consumer Outlook Sours in February

first_imgConsumer Outlook Sours in February Conference Board Confidence Consumer spending Jobs 2014-02-25 Tory Barringer in Daily Dose, Data, Headlines, News An uncertain outlook brought consumer confidence down in February, erasing much of January’s recovery.The Conference Board’s Consumer Confidence Index fell from a revised 79.4 last month to 78.1 in the most recent release. The individual components making up the index were mixed, with the measure of current conditions rising nearly four points to 81.7 and the gauge of consumer expectations falling more than five points to 75.7.“While expectations have fluctuated over recent months, current conditions have continued to trend upward and the Present Situation Index is now at its highest level in almost six years,” said Lynn Franco, director of economic indicators at the Conference Board. “This suggests that consumers believe the economy has improved, but they do not foresee it gaining considerable momentum in the months ahead.”Asked about their thoughts on the current economic situation, 21.5 percent of consumers said business conditions are “good” (up from 20.8 percent), while 22.6 percent said conditions are “bad” (from 23.4 percent). Meanwhile, 13.9 percent said jobs are “plentiful,” up slightly from the last index—though nearly a third still say jobs are hard to find.For the next six months, more consumers are expecting business conditions to worsen (up to 13.3 percent from 12.2 percent in January’s survey), and fewer expect improvements in labor or in their personal incomes.While consumers expressed a less-than-rosy outlook, economist Amna Asaf from research firm Capital Economics dismissed the “trivial drop” in confidence as “either weather-related or a delayed reaction to the recent dip in equity prices, since all of the other indicators of confidence have continued to show improvement.”“Overall, we aren’t too concerned about the tiny decline in confidence, as the improving fundamentals suggest that a rebound is just around the corner,” Asaf said.center_img February 25, 2014 455 Views Sharelast_img read more

FHFA Price Index Up 01 in July

first_img U.S. home prices continued to grow for the eighth straight month in July, though gains slowed to a crawl.The Federal Housing Finance Agency’s (FHFA) monthly House Price Index picked up 0.1 percent from June to July, coming down after a revised 0.3 percent increase in June. Calculated using price data on mortgages sold to or guaranteed by the GSEs, the index provides a look at how homes are performing exclusive of high-end, non-agency loans.For the 12 months ending in July, FHFA reported house prices were up 4.4 percent. As of the latest index, the national HPI is now 6.4 percent below its peak in April 2007 and is roughly in line with its July 2005 level.Month-to-month price increases were led by the East North Central census division, including Michigan, Wisconsin, Illinois, Indiana, and Ohio, which saw growth of 0.4 percent. At the bottom end was the Middle Atlantic—New York, New Jersey, and Pennsylvania—where prices depreciated 0.5 percent over the month. Fannie Mae FHFA Freddie Mac Home Prices 2014-09-23 Tory Barringer Share in Daily Dose, Data, Government, Headlines, Newscenter_img September 23, 2014 506 Views FHFA Price Index Up 0.1% in Julylast_img read more

Personal Income Spending Pick Up Steam in August

first_img Consumer spending Federal Reserve Incomes Inflation Wells Fargo 2014-09-29 Tory Barringer Personal Income, Spending Pick Up Steam in August September 29, 2014 503 Views Sharecenter_img in Daily Dose, Data, Government, Headlines, News In a hopeful sign for the year’s closing months, consumer spending saw a sizable increase in August as Americans’ income grew.The Bureau of Economic Analysis (BEA) reported Monday that personal consumption expenditures increased $57.5 billion—0.5 percent—month-over-month in August. The increase in spending followed a meager revised increase of less than 0.1 percent for July.Most of the increase came from a 1.9 percent improvement in purchases of durable goods, much of which came from spending on automobiles.Spending was helped by a 0.3 percent pickup in personal income, totaling an increase of $47.3 billion.”The storyline from last month’s personal income and spending release was an increased concern of softer real consumer spending in the third quarter,” said Eugenio Aleman and Michael Brown, senior economists for Wells Fargo’s Economics Group. “Today’s release indicates that last month’s storyline may not be as accurate in light of the upward revisions to spending growth.”Another contributor in August was the modest pace of growth in personal consumption expenditures (PCE), which were up 1.5 percent year-over-year, well short of the Federal Reserve’s 2 percent target for inflation. As the central bank comes closer to ending its bond-buying stimulus program and focuses on a timeline for raising short-term interest rates, soft inflation figures could mean a continued cautious stance ahead.”Given the modest inflation readings for the PCE deflator in recent months, we expect that the Fed will be slow to raise rates, deferring to June of next year,” Aleman and Brown said. “Given the strengthening domestic demand environment, it should only be a matter of time before some inflation pressures begin to build again.”last_img read more

LenderLive Acquires Walz Group

first_img Share Denver, Colorado-based end-to-end mortgage services provider LenderLive announced that it has acquired regulatory compliance solutions, full-cycle critical document fulfillment, and Certified Mail Automation provider Walz Group.Walz will operate under its existing Walz brand as a stand-alone division of LenderLive, and the current Walz management team will remain in place, including Rod Walz, founder and president of the company.”Rod and his team have built a world-class operation focused on critical communications, compliance, printing and Certified Mail solutions,” said Rick Seehausen, CEO of LenderLive. “They have also developed an impressive array of patented, proprietary technology, and we are confident that Walz will be a highly-beneficial addition to the LenderLive platform.”The Walz Group was founded in 1983 to solve the financial services industry’s array of complex compliance requirements and to automate critical correspondence (such as notices of default, correspondence related to loss mitigation or other service-related correspondence) to borrowers via certified mail. With a deep understating of ever-evolving legal and regulatory requirements to properly deliver notices of default, Walz currently serves six of the top 10 mortgage servicers and more than a quarter of Fortune 100 corporations. The Walz Group is based in Temecula, California with satellite facilities in San Diego, California, and Phoenix, Arizona”We chose LenderLive and Aquiline Capital Partners for their tremendous experience in mortgage and financial services; their ability to invest in our product and service offerings; and their shared focus on delivering exceptional client service and value,” Rod Walz said. “They will provide us with strategic and financial guidance, expanded resources and technology, as well as increased partnership opportunities.”A uniquely set of end-to-end services and products that will combine compliance, data management, back-end office technologies, and critical document management will be the result of LenderLive’s acquisition of Walz. According to the announcement, LenderLive has identified immediate synergies between LenderLive’s GuardianDocs product line and the mortgage solutions in loss mitigation and default services used by Walz.”The combined capabilities of GuardianDocs and Walz will provide elegant solutions to today’s complex life-of-loan challenges,” Seehausen said. LenderLive Acquires Walz Group in Headlines, News, Servicing, Technologycenter_img Compliance Solutions LenderLive Walz Group 2015-06-02 Seth Welborn June 2, 2015 539 Views last_img read more

Proposal to Limit Salaries for Top GSE Executives Advances in Committee

first_img The House Financial Services Committee has announced that proposed legislation to cap the salaries of CEOs at Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac has advanced to the markup phase, which will take place in the Committee on Tuesday, July 28.H.R. 2243, also known as the Equity in Government Compensation Act of 2015, was introduced by U.S. Rep. Ed Royce (R-California) in May shortly after Federal Housing Finance Agency (FHFA) director Mel Watt directed the GSEs to submit a proposed executive compensation for the CEO position that could be as high as $7.26 million a year, the 25th percentile of the market.Early in July, Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac announced that their respective CEOs, Timothy Mayopoulos and Donald Layton, would receive a raise from their current annual salaries of $600,000 (the cap set by Watt’s predecessor, Edward DeMarco) up to $4 million. The announcement of the substantial raise for the GSE’s top executives drew the ire of many lawmakers, including Royce, who said it is “unconscionable” that the GSEs would elevate the pay of their CEOs to that level while taxpayers are still on the hook. The GSEs have been under the FHFA’s conservatorship since September 2008, when they received a $187.5 billion taxpayer-funded bailout.Similar legislation was introduced by former Rep. Spencer Bachus (R-Alabama) in January 2012 and passed the House Financial Services Committee on a bipartisan vote of 52-4. One of the four who voted against the legislation was Mel Watt, then a member of the Committee.”Congress needs to put a stop to the planned multi-million dollar paydays at Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac,” Royce said upon the announcement that his bill was scheduled for markup. “Holding compensation packages at taxpayer-backed organizations to responsible limits is in the interest of the public trust. I thank Chairman Hensarling for advancing this legislation and look forward to building the bipartisan backing it previously garnered.”Watt said in a statement earlier this month that the purpose of the pay raises was to “promote CEO retention, allow reliable succession planning, and ensure the continuity, efficiency and stability” at Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac.Royce’s bill would suspend the compensation packages for Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac executives and would limit the salaries to the highest level paid at the FHFA, which the Congressional Budget Office estimated in 2011 to be $255,000 per year. It would also place non-executive GSE employees on the General Schedule (GS) pay scale, where the most they could earn annually would be $132,122.Other government agencies have weighed in on the pay rate for the top executives at the GSEs. The Department of Treasury released a statement earlier this month saying, “Treasury does not support FHFA’s new approach to CEO compensation at Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac and urged the agency to reject any increase. Treasury has consistently recommended that existing limits on compensation continue.” White House press secretary Josh Earnest stated, “I think it is entirely legitimate for the executives at those institutions to be subject to compensation limits.”Click here to see a Committee memorandum. The markup on July 28 will be a full Committee markup. in Daily Dose, Government, Headlines, News Equity in Government Compensation Act of 2015 Fannie Mae Freddie Mac House Financial Services Committee salary 2015-07-24 Seth Welborn July 24, 2015 661 Views center_img Share Proposal to Limit Salaries for Top GSE Executives Advances in Committeelast_img read more

US Treasury Yields Elevated by Positive Housing Data

first_img in Daily Dose, Data, Featured, Government, News, Uncategorized August 18, 2015 441 Views U.S. Treasury Yields Elevated by Positive Housing Data Housing Data NASDAQ Dow Jones Business News U.S. Treasury Yields 2015-08-18 Staff Writercenter_img A positive housing data report raised U.S. Treasury yields on Tuesday, according to a report from NASDAQ Dow Jones Business News.Author Min Zeng noted that the yield on the benchmark 10-year Treasury note was 2.196 percent, compared with 2.15 percent on Monday. She also mentioned that yields go up as prices go down.”The 10-year note’s yield, a bedrock for global finance, is trading near its lowest level since the end of April. Trading volume was lighter than usual amid the typical summer lull, which could exaggerate price moves,” traders said to NASDAQ.The report also found that short-term government debt securities, or T-bills, rose to the highest level in five years.The yield on the one-year T-bill hit 0.39 percent during Tuesday’s session, the highest intraday level since April 2010. By late-afternoon, it was 0.377 percent.Tom Sontag, a money manager in Chicago at Neuberger Berman Group LLC which has $251 billion assets under management, said to NASDAQ that he doesn’t expect a return to 5 percent levels of yield on T-bills.”In order to get that type of yields, you need to see 3 percent plus real economic growth and 2-3 percent inflation,” he said. “We are not in that environment.”Zeng also highlighted that recent mixed housing reports have caused investors to further question if the Federal Reserve will raise short-term interest rates at the next Federal Open Market Committee (FOMC) meeting in September. A rise in rates will deprecate the value of outstanding bonds, as buyers will be more attracted to new bonds.Investors and traders see a 36 percent likelihood of a rate increase at the September meeting, compared with 45 percent on Monday, according to data from the CME Group. The odds were 26 percent a month ago.Richard Schlanger, a money manager at Pioneer Investments in Boston, which has more than $40 billion in assets under management, said “the Fed could still tighten in September, but the global uncertainty bolstered the case that the central bank’s tightening cycle would be shallow, which would prevent bond yields from rising significantly.” Sharelast_img read more

State Housing Finance Agencies Remain Stable Amid Market Challenges

first_img in Daily Dose, Data, Government, Headlines, Market Studies, News Share State Housing Finance Agencies Remain Stable Amid Market Challenges September 4, 2015 496 Views center_img Fitch Ratings Mortgage Revenue Bond Issuance Origination Originations U.S. State Housing Finance Agencies 2015-09-04 Staff Writer Despite housing market challenges, U.S. state housing finance agencies (SHFAs) remain financially sound as mortgage revenue bond issuance, net interest, median ratios, and other factors trend upward.A recent peer study of the SHFAs from Fitch Ratings found that throughout fiscal year (FY) 2014, low conventional mortgage rates hindered SHFAs from originating new whole loan mortgages through their own debt. The report showed compared with FY 2013 results, balance sheet numbers decreased by 4.5 percent, aggregate debt declined 6.9 percent, and aggregate loan dropped 4.1 percent.”These decreases mark the fourth straight year of across-the-board declines, reflective of the economic environment during that time period and the shift in SHFAs’ business model in response to that lending environment,” Fitch said.Maura McGuigan, senior director of Fitch Ratings also added that balance sheet declines are “expected to continue in the short-term; however, some SHFAs are beginning a return to mortgage revenue bond issuance and this slow movement back may take time to appear on audited financial statement balance sheets.”The peer study provides a snapshot of 51 SHFA’s five-year financial position, a ranking chart that demonstrates how each SHFA performed in FY 2014 relative to the industry median, mortgage-backed securities held by the SHFAs, and variable debt rates.Although balance sheets fell in FY 2014, overall equity is still trending upward for the fifth year straight, with aggregate adjusted equity increasing 4.5 percent from FY 2013 and up 13 percent from FY 2010 levels. The rise in equity levels stemmed from up-front cash generated from the sale of loans.The report also revealed an uptick in the net interest spread (NIS) for the SHFAs from the agencies’ efforts to economically refund prior debt obligations, which lead to lower bond interest costs. The median net interest spread increased to 30.1 percent in FY 2014 from 24.5 percent in FY 2013 and has risen from 21.0 percent in FY 2010.The peer study also showed increasing net operating revenues (NOR) and variable-rate debt among the SHFAs, and leverage ratios continued to improve as debt to equity (DTE) ratios declined.”Rising net operating revenue for state housing finance agencies is likely attributed to rising profitability within housing bond programs and the up-front revenues generated from alternative financing methods in recent fiscal years,” McGuigan said.The FY 2014 report highlighted some of the ongoing issues that SHFAs have dealt with over the last five years as investment income was hindered by low rates and low conventional mortgage rates lowered the volume of SHFA-issued debt for originating new whole loan mortgages. In turn, the SHFAs found news ways to be profitable by originating loans through the to-be-announced (TBA) market, utilizing direct sales of MBS, and issuing MBS pass-through instruments.”Despite the challenging environment, FY 2014 results demonstrated that SHFAs are financially sound, as median ratios, such as NIS, NOR, and DTE, continue to trend positively,” the report said. “Given the recent uptick in new mortgage revenue bond issuance financing single-family whole loan mortgages to remain on SHFA balance sheets, Fitch expect FY 2015-2016 ratios may exhibit some changes. “Click here to view Fitch Ratings full FY 2014 peer study report. last_img read more

The GOPs VP Prospects and Where They Stand on Housing

first_img Share July 13, 2016 515 Views The GOP’s VP Prospects and Where They Stand on Housing Chris Christie Donald Trump Mike Pence Newt Gingrich Republican Party Vice President 2016-07-13 Seth Welborncenter_img Rumors have been circulating that Donald Trump will be selecting his running mate as soon as Friday and speculated front runners include Chris Christie, Newt Gingrich, and Mike Pence. On the issue of housing, each of these men hold varied stances.Chris Christie – Governor of New JerseyDuring his campaign for presidency this election season, Christie stated at the New Hampshire forum he was aware of the effect “lack of [affordable] housing” had on New Jersey. He also stated that he planned to work with governors across the country on federal policy to make it easier for low- and moderate-income residents to find affordable housing. That being said, according to a report from NJ.com, Christie tried multiple times to abolish the state Council on Affordable Housing (COAH) which determines how many homes should be made available to lower income residents in the state. When asked about this, NJ.com reported that Christie’s spokesman Kevin Roberts said Christie was simply against COAH and how affordable housing is run in New Jersey, not the idea of affordable housing itself. Additionally, Roberts said Christie believes officials should find a better way to make such homes available.Newt Gingrich – Former Speaker of the HouseGingrich, while running for president in 2012, stated repealing the Dodd-Frank Act was the only way to help Americans who are struggling to make their mortgage payments. “I’ve been working with several bank leaders of local small community banks who want to do exactly what you’re describing — and you have to repeal the Dodd-Frank bill because the way the Dodd-Frank bill works, it dramatically regulates the banks,” Gingrich said. “It sends a signal to the regulators to tell them not to make the loans, not to roll over the money — and in effect, it encourages foreclosures and encourages the bank actually seizing the property.” Additionally, he said “The fact is, interest rates today are among the lowest they’ve ever been for housing, but people are locked in because [they are] told by the regulators: Don’t you loan this money. And so they’re literally being told it’s better off for people to be foreclosed on than it is for people to have a workout — even though that’s exactly the wrong policy in terms of human beings.”Mike Pence – Governor of IndianaAccording to data from RealtyTrac, Indiana was one of the states hit the hardest during the housing crisis in 2008, and at the end of January 2015 Indiana had 5,217 vacant homes. In response the this, Pence passed a vacant housing law in 2015 that prevents municipalities from passing their own ordinances on vacant homes and protects banks holding liens on the homes from regulations requiring their maintenance. Additionally, he passed The Blight Elimination Program (BEP) to provide local government units in all 92 of Indiana’s counties to compete for funding to prevent foreclosures.Though housing has not been discussed in the depth it has in previous elections, knowing the different stances of both the Republican and Democratic party could be important to the growth and development of the housing market in the future. in Daily Dose, Government, Headlines, Newslast_img read more

First American Mortgage Solutions Announces Collateral File Management System

first_img First American Mortgage Solutions, LLC, a subsidiary of First American Financial Corporation, has introduced its newest service, CleanFile Solutions™, a suite that allows mortgage lenders, servicers, and investors to efficiently manage collateral files.According to a press release, the suite combines post-closing document management, loan quality control, file perfection, lien release preparation, and recording in a single, vertically integrated suite. Users will have the ability to access to multiple features, including document retrieval and retention, imaging, assignment preparation, title policy retrieval, and replacement. Clients can also can use CleanFile Solutions to complete various phases of the loan perfection process and guide them through strict regulatory requirements.Kevin Wall, President of First American Mortgage Solutions, explained that CleanFile Solutions will allow lenders and servicers to concentrate on consumer gratification and efficiency. “CleanFile Solutions provides lenders and servicers with a unique set of post-closing capabilities combined with the confidence of working with First American. We now have the ability to close loan perfection gaps and complete collateral files at whatever scale needed,” he said. “The more we can do for our lender and servicer clients to help achieve total loan quality, regulatory compliance and file perfection, the more they can focus on driving productivity and consumer satisfaction.” First American Mortgage Solutions technology 2017-02-17 Mirasha Brown in Headlines, News, Technology First American Mortgage Solutions Announces Collateral File Management Systemcenter_img February 17, 2017 682 Views Sharelast_img read more

Amendment Extends FOIA Exemptions to GSEs

first_imgAmendment Extends FOIA Exemptions to GSEs Share May 9, 2017 734 Views The U.S. House of Representatives has passed an amendment that extends the nine exemptions of the Freedom of Information Act (FOIA) to both Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac.Sponsored by Rep. Hank Johnson (D-Georgia), the bill amends HR 1694, a law passed in late April. HR 1694 requires Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac to comply with all requirements of FOIA. Previously, the two government-sponsored enterprises were exempt from the law, because they did not qualify as federal agencies.With the passage of the new amendment, Fannie and Freddie will not have to disclose any information under FOIA’s nine exemptions, which include documents classified as secret; information solely related to personnel; trade secrets; privileged inter-agency letters; medical releases; information compiled for law enforcement purposes; and more.According to Johnson, the amendment helps ensure the privacy and safety of GSE employees and American borrowers.“By passing this amendment, we will ensure that personal privacy and sensitive information is appropriately protected, while ensuring the highest level of transparency for the American taxpayers, who have invested almost $187 billion in Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac,” Johnson said.HR 1694 was passed in late April. According to the Congressional Budget Office, the new law will require the entities to accept, process, and satisfy all FOIA requests from the public as long as they are under conservatorship. The CBO estimates that this uptick in administrative duties will increase costs by about $10 million over the next 10 years. The CBO noted that each entity would need to hire new staff and its expand its data processing abilities.This is the second time issues of communication privacy have come up this week. On Monday, Buzzfeed published a letter from Jeb Hensarling (R-Texas), the Chairman of the Financial Services Committee, to Treasury Secretary Steven Mnuchin. In the letter, Hensarling announced the committee’s intention to retain control of all communication between the two agencies, saying they qualified as “congressional records.”“All such documents and communications constitute congressional records not ‘agency records’ for purposes of the Freedom of Information Act, and remain subject to congressional control even when in the physical possession of the” agency, Hensarling wrote.The Freedom of Information Act was passed in 1967, giving any American the right to request records from a federal agency. Congress is exempt from the law.center_img in Daily Dose, Government, Headlines, News Congress Fannie Mae foia Freddie Mac freedom of information act HOUSING mortgage 2017-05-09 Aly J. Yalelast_img read more

Mortgage Industry Going Digital

first_img Coworkers Team Modern Office Place.Account Manager Work New Business Idea Startup Presentation.Woman Touching Digital Tablet Screen.Desktop Computer Wood Table.Virtual HiTech Diagram Interface.ConceptHightide Settlement Services, LLC, a provider of title and settlement services, is now offering eClosings through Pavaso, a supplier of digital mortgage closing technologies.Hightide, located in California, uses its experience and expertise to tailor comprehensive, customized solutions for every title and settlement need. Pavaso expands the range of options available to Hightide customers and helps deliver faster, more convenient closings.The Texas-based Pavaso platform breaks down traditional silos and brings everyone in the homebuying transaction together in the same digital environment, where they can seamlessly communicate, collaborate and securely exchange information throughout the entire closing process. Designed by industry veterans to simplify the closing experience, Pavaso can help save time, reduce costs and streamlines processes.“Hightide is always looking for new ways to improve the customer experience and adapt to the demands of a changing industry,” said Keith D. Murray, Hightide’s President and Chief Executive Officer. “The Pavaso platform helps Hightide do both. Not only does Pavaso give our customers more choices and convenience, but it also gives us tools to maximize efficiency and remain competitive in the digital age.”“Our comprehensive eClosing solution provides the flexibility to deliver a full eClosing, a hybrid closing or even a traditional paper closing,” said Cheryl Baillis, Executive Vice President of Operations at Pavaso. “We understand the importance of the customer experience and believe in providing the ability to choose the closing method they’re most comfortable with and that best meets their needs. Our goal is to add convenience to everyone involved in the real estate transaction.” Digital Closing mortgage company Title 2019-04-26 Mike Albanese April 26, 2019 583 Views Mortgage Industry Going Digitalcenter_img Share in Headlines, Newslast_img read more

Cathy Burns CEO of the Produce Marketing Associat

first_img Cathy Burns, CEO of the Produce Marketing Association (PMA), was recently in South America for PMA Fresh Connections: Chile, which she opened with her State of the Industry address. FreshFruitPortal.com later caught up with her to hear more about new retail trends, the evolution of consumer marketing campaigns, the growth of Chilean and Peruvian fruit exports, and developments in the rapidly growing Chinese market.FFP: A large part of the PMA’s work is focused on new ways that we can increase fruit and vegetable consumption – what advice would you give to fruit and vegetable growers and exporters in South American countries looking to expand in mature import markets like the U.S. and boost sales?CB: I would recommend that growers and exporters focus their strategies on truly understanding the needs of the buying community, which are ultimately dictated by shopper preferences. We heard from buyers during PMA Fresh Connections: Chile that opportunities remain for shippers to grow their market share as long as they deliver product that meets the quality, timeliness, and safety specifications of their customers. By meeting consumers’ desires for fresh, flavorful fruits and vegetables that consistently delight their senses, our industry will be able to create preference and stimulate demand that will help to increase fresh produce consumption.FFP: What are some of the most interesting changes that you have seen in the Chilean and South American fruit and vegetable industry over the last few years?CB: In Chile, there has been an important increase in production, reaching 2,7 million tons in the last season (18,57% increase in the last 3 seasons). Today Chile is the 4th largest fruit exporter worldwide and #1 in the Southern Hemisphere. Asia is the destination market with the biggest increase for Chilean exports (44,1% growth in the last 3 years) and within Asia the major growth is in cherries with approximately 90% of the production going to China. While the US and Europe continue to be important markets for Chilean fruit, every year the percentage of their crops going to Asia increases.Other notable change in Latin America has been the rise of Peru as an important fruit exporter. This country has done an admirable job of opening new markets around the globe, increasing the number of products admissible to existing markets and greatly increasing their production of many commodities such as avocados, blueberries, citrus and more.FFP: Chilean fruit exporters have faced challenges maintaining their market share in some areas over recent years –  with greater competition from other supplying regions and a slow adoption of newer varieties for some key fruits like apples and grapes. How do you see Chile’s future in the U.S. market?CB: I believe Chile has a bright future in supplying fruit to the United States. The Fresh Connections audience heard from one U.S. buyer that the number one strategy to increase U.S. market share is to continue to invest in new fruit variety development. She cited Cotton Candy grapes as an example of a product she can simply not get enough of for her customers.FFP: What are some of the biggest trends in produce retailing that you have seen over the last decade, and how do these changes affect foreign growers and exporters?CB: A number of trends come to mind, one of which has been the growth in organic fresh produce. Overall, in the U.S., organic product sales now account for more than $21 billion. Much of this growth is being driven by Millennial and Generation X consumers, with Gen Z and Boomers following closely behind. Nielsen found that in the U.S. last year, organic pre-packaged salads saw an increase in sales of 5.7%, with organic apples growing +6.8% and organic carrots up +2.8%.Another global trend is the increasing popularity and consumer adoption of plant-based foods. It is estimated that sales in plant-based foods will increase to 5 billion dollar by 2020. The reasons for the growth in this market segment is based on, among other reasons, consumer approaches to sustainable eating habits, as well as nutritional and dietary concerns. The demand for plant-based foods provides chefs, food scientists, and technologist, with opportunities to design exciting menu options, including vegetable steaks, burgers and even cauliflower pizza. As with organics, studies show the growth here is mainly driven by Millennials who are willing to spend more money on food that aligns with their lifestyles and beliefs.FFP: How do you feel consumer marketing campaigns for produce are evolving or should evolve in order to keep customers engaged? NZ: Zespri in nationwide sales trials of red kiwif … Peru’s blueberry export volume to increase 60% ove … You might also be interested in February 08 , 2019 center_img CB: Today’s shoppers are more connected than ever, particularly through social media, and the food industry as a whole is becoming more adept at engagement. Even from an association perspective, we’ve found more and more attendees and participants are sharing what they are seeing and learning on social media from the various programs we produce each year.As I mentioned in Chile, food is an integral part of the cultural currency on social, and gives our industry a direct connection to the shoppers who consume our products. More and more produce marketers are leveraging the opportunities on platforms like Instagram to build and strengthen those direct connections. Not only does it give brands access to those shoppers, it also gives them control over their story. And that’s an area where the produce and floral industry could expand upon through the use of social media, particularly videos: telling the stories of their products, how and by whom they were grown, the faces and family behind the food.On Facebook, food is the number-one consumed video. It’s been found that viewers retain 95% of a message when they watch it on video, compared to 10% when reading it. This presents a wide range of opportunities for our industry to grow.To reach consumers, businesses should strive to offer interactive experiences – whether through in-person engagement or via technologies like augmented reality. They should also consider pairing cultural trends with marketing opportunities that make sense for consumers.This idea of connecting our industry with cultural trends is a key part of PMA’s plans in the year ahead. We will be part of the education program at the South by Southwest (SXSW) festival in Austin, Texas, in March, where we’ll help shape cultural conversations and influences by sharing the incredible work our industry does every day with a global audience.Over the next few months and years you will see that PMA and our industry is not only better represented in those conversations, but ultimately, leading them — and not only within our industry, but wherever important conversations about the world’s food supply are taking place.FFP: You have spoken about the growth of the e-commerce sector around the world – what do you see as the biggest opportunities this growth is opening up for the global produce industry?CB: Growth in e-commerce worldwide presents opportunities for our industry to reach more consumers; however, the biggest challenge is ensuring that the fruits and vegetables purchased online arrive in at the consumers’ door with the utmost quality and care. Studies have shown that disappointment with the freshness and quality of produce bought online is the biggest barrier to future online purchases. That said, the supply chain continues to invest in new technologies to monitor and control quality issues to ensure consumers have a good experience with the produce they have bought (either online or in-store).FFP: What do you see as the biggest trends related to fruit and vegetable marketing in the Chinese market? What lessons could other countries take from China in terms of marketing produce?CB: Online retail in China continues to grow significantly, for both global imports and domestic food items. Mobile e-commerce currently accounts for 51 percent of all online sales in China.Chinese consumers tend to spend more on higher-priced products and prefer brands that deliver safe, reliable, quality foods. E-commerce gives brands easier access to consumers without the usual barriers of distribution challenges. This also allows smaller brands to find uniqueness of their themselves on equal footing with large brands.Storytelling in marketing efforts is one way to reach young Chinese consumers, who make their choices based on an array of information. It is critical for brands to get their message across to consumers, such as creative stories about brand history, the uniqueness of their products, and even the brand’s Chinese name and logo design. In addition, social media engagement with consumers, such as WeChat campaigns and live broadcasting with key opinion leaders, have become more popular in China – with many audiences watching theseevents from their mobile devices.FFP: What do you think are the biggest opportunities for the global produce industry from the growth of Asian markets like China? CB: China’s economic growth and growing middle class have made it a very attractive market for countries around the world.  As this development continues to the second and third-tier cities in China, the market potential increases. But China is not the only game in town. The 11 countries of Southeast Asia represent 622 million consumers, with an expanding middle class. PMA is currently pulling together research on these markets to share with members. FPAA slams Florida growers for rejecting Mexican t … Tariff increase on Chinese imports to raise input … last_img read more

A gathering of Travellers Choice business developm

first_imgA gathering of Travellers Choice business development managers in Canberra recently enjoyed a novel approach to brainstorming business strategies, with a ‘disorderly’ Segway journey around the capital.General manager sales Nicola Strudwick said once the BDMs had mastered the self-balancing personal transporters – and their propensity for 360 degree spins – they turned their attention to driving the Travellers Choice network forward.“The aim was to explore ways for the group to continue to deliver our nationally-distributed member shareholders with an unrivalled customer experience. That means ensuring members are fully utilising the support tools and services available to help grow their businesses, and looking at additional networking opportunities,” said Strudwick.“At the same time, we discussed strategies for showcasing the Travellers Choice network and our company’s value proposition to potential new members across Australia.” BDMsTravellers Choicelast_img read more

SilkAir the regional wing of Singapore Airlines

first_imgSilkAir, the regional wing of Singapore Airlines (SIA), will be transferring its Langkawi (Malaysia), Pekanbaru (Indonesia) and Kalibo (Philippines) services to Scoot, SIA’s low-cost airline. Pekanbaru and Kalibo services are scheduled for 8 April, 30 May and 28 June 2018 respectively. SilkAir currently flies three times weekly to each destination.Scoot already operates three and four weekly services to Langkawi and Kalibo respectively, while Pekanbaru will be a new addition to the network. With the transfers, Scoot will progressively adjust its services to Langkawi and Kalibo in the coming months to provide more options and convenience to customers.“We are constantly reviewing our route operations to ensure optimisation of the SIA Group’s resources. The transfer of these three services, Langkawi, Pekanbaru and Kalibo, is a move to do just that and also presents a better match of capacity to demand,” commented Mr. Foo Chai Woo, Chief Executive SilkAir.SilkAir customers booked for Langkawi for travel from 9 April 2018 onwards, and Kalibo from 29 June 2018 onwards, will be given the option to reroute their flight to another SilkAir point in Malaysia or the Philippines respectively, or to continue their travel to Langkawi or Kalibo on a Scoot flight. Alternatively, they can also opt for a full refund of their tickets. Customers booked for Pekanbaru for travel from 31 May 2018 onwards will be given the option to reroute their flight to another SilkAir destination in Indonesia or alternatively, obtain a full refund of their tickets.All administrative fees and penalties will be waived for customers who have purchased tickets prior to today. This also applies to KrisFlyer redemption tickets. airlinesIndonesiaLangkawiMalaysiaPhilippinesScootSilkairlast_img read more

airlinesEmiratesSpiceJet

first_imgairlinesEmiratesSpiceJet Emirates and SpiceJet have signed a Memorandum of Understanding (MoU) to enter into a reciprocal codeshare agreement, opening new routes and destinations for passengers travelling between India and popular destinations across Africa, America, Europe and the Middle East.Subject to necessary government approvals, the partnership will enable Emirates’ passengers to enjoy seamless connectivity on flights to India, leveraging SpiceJet’s strong domestic presence and adding six new destinations: Amritsar, Jaipur, Pune, Mangalore, Madurai and Calicut – to the nine existing cities in India served by Emirates. This will bolster Emirates’ already-extensive network adding a total of 67 weekly connections between Emirates’ hub in Dubai to these six fast growing destinations in India. This includes increased domestic connectivity from Emirates’ nine Indian gateways to points such as Goa, Hubli, Guwahati, Vishakhapatnam and Tuticorin which would allow for a greater variety of travel options between both Emirates and SpiceJet flights.“Our journey in India has been defined by progressive investment, partnership and growth. We constantly try to improve and provide our customers with greater flexibility and travel choices. This partnership with SpiceJet and the mutual expansion of our network will go a long way in further enhancing the travel experience of our customers in India as well as those heading into India, benefiting travellers and businesses alike,” said Adnan Kazim, Emirates’ Divisional Senior Vice President, Strategic Planning, Revenue Optimization and Aeropolitical affairs.Passengers travelling from India will have more choice to travel seamlessly with minimum connection times, when flying to destinations in Emirates’ Europe network such as London, Paris, Frankfurt, Manchester and Amsterdam. The codeshare agreement will also open up flights for Indian travellers to North and South American destinations such as New York, Washington, Toronto, and Sao Paulo as well as Middle Eastern destinations such as Jeddah, Kuwait and Amman, operated by Emirates.last_img read more

Former Cardinals kicker Phil Dawson retires

first_img Former Cardinals kicker Phil Dawson retires It’s no secret that Arizona Cardinals defensive end Darnell Dockett is an outspoken individual. And he’s never been particularly quiet on Twitter.That was exemplified clearly on Friday, when the 32-year-old tweeted that Kansas City Chiefs offensive tackle Branden Albert was his “new teammate.”The tweet read: @ddockett: Hey I want every one to follow my homie////new teammate.. Also Newest member of bird gang. 👏👏👏👏 👉👉👉👉 @B_Albert76 Grace expects Greinke trade to have emotional impact The 5: Takeaways from the Coyotes’ introduction of Alex Meruelo Comments   Share   Top Stories It was deleted soon after it was sent, but several screenshots of the tweet were captured. Derrick Hall satisfied with D-backs’ buying and selling The Cardinals have been linked to interest in Albert, and left tackle is certainly the most glaring need on the team’s roster, but the NFL doesn’t allow teams to negotiate contracts with unrestricted free agents until 10 a.m. MDT on Saturday and no contracts will be inked until Tuesday at the earliest. Kansas City isn’t expected to re-sign Albert, who is also thought to be highly sought after by the Miami Dolphins.It’s probably worth noting that Dockett has previously sent hundreds of bizarre tweets, particularly those which include pictures. A quick scroll through his feed includes pictures of Miley Cyrus twerking, midgets, O.J. and Nicole Simpson, Harriet Tubman and plenty of similarly random things.Albert, who tweeted after the rumors begin to swirl, seems to have been aware of that.This guy starting trouble….. See y’all later lol— Branden Albert (@B_Albert76) March 7, 2014last_img read more