Good morning! Today is Thursday, July 16. A Bitcoin scam breached some of world’s most prominent Twitter accounts, including Bill Gates, Barack Obama and Elon Musk. Oklahoma’s governor tests positive for COVID-19. The nation’s largest online marketplace for babysitters and other caregivers will pay $1 million to settle allegations it misrepresented background checks and auto-renewals without consent.
And in mortgage and housing news …
AIME LOSES SPONSORS: The Association of Independent Mortgage Experts is hemorrhaging key sponsorsin after the disclosure that its leader sent lewd and misogynist video texts about a Quicken Loans executive’s spouse earlier this month.
CFPB SUES CHICAGO LENDER: The Consumer Financial Protection Bureau filed a lawsuit against a Chicago-based mortgage lender for allegedly discouraging Black applicants from applying for loans while engaging in redlining by discouraging borrowers from investing in predominantly African-American neighborhoods.
MORTGAGE APPS: Mortgage applications increased 5.1 percent from the week before as rates continue to sit at historic lows and the housing market pushes its way through the coronavirus pandemic, according to a report released by the Mortgage Bankers Association.
PPP DISCRIMINATION: The National Community Reinvestment Coalition sent Black and white testers with similar profiles to talk to banks about securing PPP loans to help their small businesses stay afloat during the coronavirus crisis. They found “different levels of encouragement to apply for loans, different products offered and different information provided by bank representatives.”
MIAMI MARKET: Buyers looking for a home in South Florida may need to be wary as prices are inflated to their highest levels in eight years.
MORTGAGE ASSISTANCE LACKING: The Federal Reserve continues to omit all private sector residential mortgages (non-federally guaranteed) from its liquidity support programs. This glaring omission has created a large divide within the housing sector, and if left unremedied, will have far-reaching consequences for housing, homeowners and taxpayers for years to come.
EVICTION TSUNAMI: Housing advocates warn that a “tsunami of evictions” is coming as unemployment numbers rise and mortgage relief expires.
AFFORDABLE HOUSING: Minimum wage workers cannot afford rent in any U.S. state.
COST OF RACISM: Raphael Bostic, president and CEO of the Atlanta Federal Reserve Bank, says racism is a danger to the health of America’s economy.
EMPLOYEE-SPONSORED RETIREMENT: The coronavirus pandemic is decimating retirement plans at small businesses.