Three Card Monty: Why is Pandemic Relief Going to Servicers? Why are they not claiming relief for REMIC Trusts? Will homeowner debts be reduced by Federal payments to “Servicers?”

https://www.nytimes.com/2020/04/21/business/mortgage-investors-coronavirus.html?referringSource=articleShare

By failing to require a credit to homeowners when the Federal government makes payments on claimed obligations, the bailout is simply adding to profit of investment banks, servicers and foreclosure mills. They are eating their cake and having it too. Obligations are paid off but their claim against homeowners remains unchanged.

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Foreclosures are filed in the name of a named Trustee for a collection of words that is then treated as an entity. More specifically it is treated as a trust. Sometimes the foreclosure mill goes further and says it is filed for the holders of certificates.

  • If a “trust” is the claimant in a foreclosure, why isn’t it a claimant in a plea for relief due to nonpayments from homeowners?
  • If the holders of certificates are suffering economic loss from nonpayment by homeowners why are they not the direct recipients of Federal relief?
  • Who is really going to get Federal bailout money and will it cover a loss or will it be profit?
  • If the ultimate result is that obligations are being paid, why isn’t the homeowner getting notice of a corresponding reduction in the amount of payments claimed as due?
  • Who is the real party collecting money and why?

The answers are obvious. Wall Street is again playing fast and loose with its labels to suit its own ends. If investors fail to receive payments promised them by the investment banks they have only the rights set forth in their contract with an investment bank —- the “underwriter” that underwrote the offering of certificates that were false labelled as “mortgage backed” and again falsely labeled as “bonds.” But the underwriter was actually the issuer. So the entire proceeds of sale of certificates went to the investment bank instead of a “REMIC Trust.”

And that is why there is no trust getting a Federal bailout and there was no trust getting a Federal bailout in 2008-2009. No trust has any claim to any money. So why are they Plaintiffs in judicial foreclosures and beneficiaries in nonjudicial foreclosures? Because the Wall Street banks are inserting a jumble of words to escape liability for making false claims.

Investors have no right to receive the payments from homeowners. So the relief package proposed by Fannie and Freddie is designed to shore up the value and liquidity of holding unregulated securities (certificates) in a market that is wholly controlled by investment banks (not a free market) and completely dependent on continued sales of certificates that are neither worthy of the high ratings conferred upon them by rating agencies nor worthy of being insured (unless the insurance contract is a ruse backed up by the expectation of a Federal bailout, again).

Hidden beneath the waves of economic loss and relief packages is an essential truth about what Wall Street has most people believing was the securitization of loans. But the loans were never sold, much less divided into pieces that were sold off as securities. It was personal data that was securitized and then there were complex instruments indexed on that personal homeowner data that was securitized. None of it had anything to do with the sale of any loan nor the collection of any money from homeowners.

While the foreclosure judgment and a sale of property  results in money proceeds, as I have reported here, it never goes to any Trustee, trust, or even investor. The money is sent to companies that have claimed to be servicers although they never say they are servicing on behalf of owners of the loans. that’s because the loans were never sold.

Those self-proclaimed “servicers” are actually collecting money for the investment banks who have labelled themselves “Master Servicers.” The investment banks receive money from multiple sources — continued sales of “certificates” (falsely  dubbed mortgage backed bonds), homeowner payments, and most importantly trading profits on various derivative and hedge contracts.

The obligation of the investment bank to make any payment to any investor who paid for a certificate is limited to their agreement when they purchased the certificate from the investment bank.

That obligation is in large part discretionary — i.e., it is based upon the sole discretion of the investment bank as to whether money paid to investors can be recovered and is further restricted by a discretionary determination s to whether there have been “events” based on indexing to certain data that is called “loan data.”

The servicing companies mentioned in the article cited above have no obligation to make any payments to the investors. Their function is to distribute money to investors by access to funds made available by the investment bank. And the assumption that their thin capitalization puts them in danger of extinction is a misapprehension of the true facts.

“Servicers” have no obligation to make payments to investors. None. Investors will get paid as long as investment banks see a reason to pay them. And the investment banks will see a reason to pay them as long as they can sell more certificates.

The proof is in the pudding. After the payments are made, homeowners are never given notice that the money claimed as due from them has been reduced. The game is on — get money from homeowners, force the sale of their homes even though everyone is getting paid. 

Neil F Garfield, MBA, JD, 73, is a Florida licensed attorney since 1977. He has received multiple academic and achievement awards in business and law. He is a former investment banker, securities broker, securities analyst, and financial analyst.

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8 Responses

  1. Hi John — You need the name of the “TRUST” If the Trust was registered it will on SEC website. Type in under company filings. PSA will usually be found under “8k” The mortgage schedule may or may not be there. But even if it is there — The schedule was only based on a Mortgage Loan Purchase Agreement that was only an “Intent” to sell.

  2. On another topic. SEC records. Our ” originator ” was swallowed up by WAMU 07 – 08. I have found what appears to be the ” security ” that may have our loan. I need help finding the schedule of actual loans
    that were in the pool, also where do I find the psa for the pool ?
    Any help/leads will be appreciated.

  3. Yes Ian. And — you know — where it came from is where it goes back to.

  4. I would wager a guess that any “loans” which Fannie or Freddie suggest buying are in MBS which have been heavily bet against via CDSs, and come to think about it, there are no CDSs betting on Fannie and Freddie to fail. But maybe there are, which may be why the Fed is granting up to 12 months deferment or more to mortgages held by F & F.
    Just wild guesses to pass the time here.

  5. And what is this from the NYT article –

    “Mr. Calabria and the agency are considering additional steps to provide mortgage firms with more flexibility, including allowing them to sell Fannie and Freddie some loans that borrowers have temporarily stopped paying,”

  6. Leo — that is what they do.

    If there any consumer law that states “servicer” must tell you where money goes? I don’t think so.

  7. Good article Neil. But what those loans claimed to be in derived REMICs that were not offered for security sale to security underwriters?

    Where does that money go?

  8. It doesn’t work this way, the payments to servicers are recorded against the general ledger debt account, so to speak, but the bank never produces records of the Actual debt to the courts as evidence, but only the fabricated presumed record of the ‘debtor bank account!.

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