Morning Roundup (12/15/2023) — Opportunity Zones Pros, Cons

Good Morning! Today is Friday, December 15. Hungary blocked the EU from approving a financial aid package for Ukraine. Senate Democrats said they will delay their holiday break to work on a compromise for Ukraine aid and immigration. A long-horned bull loose on New Jersey train tracks delayed public transit.

The Mortgage Note Reports

Pros And Cons: Opportunity Zones have been successful in some areas of the country, but there has been mounting criticism for them. Writer Erin Flynn Jay has the story.

Rates Hit 5-Month Low: Mortgage rates dipped below 7% for the first time since August after the Federal Reserve set the stage for rate cuts in the coming year.

Merger 2024: Lower and Thrive Mortgage will merge in 2024, creating two brands under one umbrella with more than 650 loan officers and 120 active branches.

In other mortgage and housing news…

CU Under Fire: Navy Federal Credit Union approved more than 75% of white mortgage applicants in 2022 but less than 50% of Black borrowers, a CNN analysis found.

“Reason To Be Optimistic”: Buyer activity picked up through the beginning of December, especially in the Northeast and West, thanks to cooling rates…

Not Too Optimistic: …but deals are still falling through at the highest rate on record due to lingering economic uncertainty, and some metros continue to see price declines.

MSP Update: ICE announced that its MSP loan servicing system now features the ability for the automated release of the lien once a mortgage has been paid off.

Company News: MFA Financial named Bryan Doran its Chief Accounting Officer; Movement Mortgage is suing Summit’s CEO for corporate espionage; Cloudvirga’s integration with Desktop Underwriter now includes early assessment.