Center 'Meltdown' series continues to expose abuses that could lead to the next economic crisis

By Bill Buzenberg

Four years after answering 'Who's behind the financial meltdown,' we follow up and see where those people are now.

Subprime lending execs back in business five years after crash

By Daniel Wagner

Executives from all of the top 25 subprime lending firms are working in the mortgage business five years later.

Excerpts from this story referencing "Bank of America":

"… ing to a civil complaint filed last year by the Justice Department against Bank of America, which purchased Countrywide in 2008. Kurland and other Countrywide alumn …"

"… an, she says, from roughly $400 per month to more than $800. By that time, Bank of America had bought Countrywide. Fore asked Bank of America to change the loan term …"

"… han $800. By that time, Bank of America had bought Countrywide. Fore asked Bank of America to change the loan terms until her husband’s workers’ compensation set …"

"… reclosure sale reversed so that she and George can remain in the house. A Bank of America spokeswoman said the bank does not comment on open litigation. The company …"

Bear Stearns mortgage executives have plum jobs on Wall Street

By Lauren Kyger and Alison Fitzgerald

Executives from the mortgage finance division that helped sink Bear Stearns have similar jobs at major Wall Street banks.

Excerpts from this story referencing "Christy Romero":

"… to ResCap during the years Marano was in charge, according to a report by Christy Romero, the special inspector general for the Troubled Asset Relief Program. Mar …"

Mortgage lender owned by Dole Foods magnate accused by CFPB of abusive practices

By Daniel Wagner

The new consumer watchdog is accusing a Utah lender of steering borrowers into high interest mortgages.

Excerpts from this story referencing "oil":

"… ate market collapsed in the sixties.” He soon owned real estate, mining, oil and cattle companies. …"

Mel Watt enjoys close ties to financial industries

By Alison Fitzgerald

Bank leaders, PACs made prospective housing agency leader a top recipient of campaign cash.

Excerpts from this story referencing "Bank of America":

"… the last election cycle, the political action committees of Goldman Sachs, Bank of America and Wells Fargo each gave Watt’s campaign $10,000. Bank of America …"

"… Bank of America and Wells Fargo each gave Watt’s campaign $10,000. Bank of America and Goldman each gave an additional $5,000 to Watt’s leadership PAC. Wa …"

"… es Committee and he represents the Charlotte, N.C., area, which is home to Bank of America and was home to Wachovia, until it failed and was purchased by Wells Fargo …"

"… former CEO Franklin Raines chipping in $1,500 to help Watt keep his seat. Bank of America, Watt’s hometown bank that got a government bailout after buying money-l …"

Wells Fargo to pay $175M in lending settlement

By The Associated Press

Justice Dept: Wells Fargo to pay $175M to settle allegations of bias against blacks, Hispanics

Report: Countrywide won influence with discounts

By The Associated Press

Subprime lender Countrywide bought influence of Washington elite with mortgage discounts

New whistleblower cases allege continued bank fraud

By Amy Biegelsen and Emma Schwartz

Mortgage modifications and appraisal processes in question

Virginians protest General Electric over foreclosures

By Amy Biegelsen and Emma Schwartz

Group says company should reinvest where its loans went bad

Excerpts from this story referencing "Clyde Ellis":

"…  2007The FBI is now investigating WMC.At today’s protest, Rev. Clyde Ellis, pastor at Mt. Olive Baptist Church in Woodbridge, VA, led off a series of …"

Feds investigating possible fraud at GE’s former subprime unit

By Michael Hudson and E. Scott Reckard

Federal investigators looking into possible fraud at GE's now-closed subprime lender

Excerpts from this story referencing "U.S. Justice Department":

"… ll Street accountable for its role in the financial crisis.The FBI and the U.S. Justice Department are looking into potentially criminal business practices at Burbank, Calif …"

Worst may be yet to come in foreclosure crisis, study says

Millions more homes at 'imminent risk of default' study says

Obama housing plan gets faint praise

The president outlined a new plan to help homeowners, GOP presidential candidates rely on free market

GOP candidates in foreclosure capital say government not the solution to crisis

By Michael Hudson

Republican candidates in Nevada say foreclosure mess will go away if government stays out of it

Excerpts from this story referencing "Herman Cain":

"… blem out.   “We need to get government out of the way,” said Herman Cain. “The right course is to let the markets work,” said former Massachuss …"

Inside Countrywide, a ‘counseling meeting’ then termination

By Michael Hudson

Whistleblower suffers cancer, then termination from employment

Excerpts from this story referencing "Bank of America":

"… was also carried out or condoned by upper-level executives.A spokesman for Bank of America, which purchased Countrywide in 2008, declined to answer questions about E …"

"… ording to the clerk’s office for Arapahoe County (Colo.) District Court. Bank of America didn’t respond to a request for a response about Eisenman’s allegation …"

"… ass the administrative process within the Labor Department.A spokesman for Bank of America didn’t respond to questions about Wingard’s claims. …"

Countrywide loan underwriter found herself in ‘dangerous territory’

By Michael Hudson

Countrywide underwriter learns that eventually, giants really do fall

Excerpts from this story referencing "Bank of America Corp.":

"… And they didn’t care that it was at the expense of other human beings.”Bank of America Corp., which bought Countrywide in 2008, declined to comment on Daniels’ accou …"

Mortgage industry tanks, fraud continues at Countrywide

By Michael Hudson

As the mortgage industry melted down, fraud investigator kept up the pressure, soon lost her job

Excerpts from this story referencing "Bank of America":

"… climbing, and the industry leader, Countywide, would soon be forced to ask Bank of America for an infusion of capital to help it keep afloat.The fraud investigation …"

"… tes for account statements from various banks and brokerage firms, such as Bank of America and Washington Mutual.In some of the offices, investigators found more tha …"

"… and that its ethical standards were “rigorously enforced.”Zachary and Bank of America reached an out of court settlement in the case in 2009. As part of the set …"

"… thout them, it wouldn’t work.”‘A rare opportunity’In January 2008, Bank of America announced that it had reached a deal to purchase Countrywide, which had lo …"

Countrywide protected fraudsters by silencing whistleblowers, say former employees

By Michael Hudson

Exclusive interview with a high-ranking Bank of America whistleblower reveals corruption that led to the financial collapse

Excerpts from this story referencing "Roseville":

"… what she later claimed to be evidence of serious fraud at Countrywide’s Roseville, Calif., branch. Employees were falsifying loan applicants’ salaries in …"

Stock market plunge shows need for tough oversight of financial system, reformers say

By Michael Hudson

Is stock market plunge a sign that tough Wall St. reforms are still needed?

Excerpts from this story referencing "Spain":

"… ks was triggered by fresh worries about the debt problems facing Italy and Spain, and whether the European Union could afford to rescue them. …"

2012 election + weak housing market = new White House policies?

By Shirley Gao and Julie Vorman

The fast-approaching 2012 election has the Obama administration eyeing new policies to breathe life into housing market

Consumer advocate Warren returns to ring for more sparring with GOP-led panel

By Julie Vorman

Elizabeth Warren returns to GOP-led hearing for more sparring over consumer agency

Excerpts from this story referencing "Commodity Futures Trading Commission":

"… - Deadline for public comments on a proposal by banking regulators and the Commodity Futures Trading Commission to set margin and capital requirements for swap dealers and major swap tra …"

Mortgage servicing standards at the top of consumer agency's agenda

By Julie Vorman and Shirley Gao

New consumer agency sets mortgage servicing standards as a top priority

Financial reform this week: Will Fed bow to banks' demand to keep swipe fees high?

By Julie Vorman

Fed to set swipe fee limit

Reform reading: New York AG takes aim at Bank of America

By Shirley Gao

Reform reading: New York AG takes aim at Bank of America

As Fannie, Freddie flounder, six top execs receive handsome rewards

By John Solomon and Julie Vorman

Obama administration approves $34 million in compensation without market analysis of executive pay

Excerpts from this story referencing "general counsel":

"… David M. Johnson, was paid $4.6 million in 2009 and 2010. The company’s general counsel, Timothy Mayopoulos, had a compensation package of $4.5 million for the tw …"

"… reddie’s chief financial officer, Ross Kari, was paid $4 million and its general counsel, Robert Bostrom, took home $5.2 million, according to the inspector genera …"

Financial reform this week: Will SEC's final whistleblower rule require first filing internal complaint?

By Julie Vorman

Your guide to Dodd-Frank law deadlines, hearing and events for the week of May 23

Education Department promises a fix to troubled disability review program

By Sasha Chavkin

After an investigation by ProPublica and Center for Public Integrity last week found that the Department of Education’s bureaucratic program

Judge says Fannie Mae whistleblower's lawsuit can go forward

By Michael Hudson

As Congress begins to tackle the future of Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac, the government-chartered mortgage giants that have been kept alive wi

Excerpts from this story referencing "Judge":

"… was Herron’s important procedural victory on Thursday when U.S. District Judge Rosemary Collyer rejected Fannie’s request to dismiss the whistleblower …"

"… at only can be distilled and processed after all the facts come to light," Judge Collyer wrote in the Feb. 10 ruling. "The question of whether Fannie Mae i …"

Data confirms that securitized mortgages less likely to be modified

By Amy Biegelsen

Government data analyzed by Federal Reserve economists shows what many home owners have already learned the hard way: Consumers have a muc

Claims of high-pressure sales, fraud at odds with Quicken Loans’ straight-shooting image

By Michael Hudson

Quicken Loans, the giant mortgage lender founded by Cleveland Cavaliers owner Dan Gilbert, goes on trial Tuesday in Detroit to face allegati

Excerpts from this story referencing "Michael Pikora":

"… they qualified for a lower rate, and rolling hidden fees into the loan,” Michael Pikora, a former loan salesman, said in a sworn statement in a lawsuit involving …"

Conservative think tank's plan would limit securitization of mortgages

By Amy Biegelsen

The American Enterprise Institute offered a plan today to eliminate the “bubble-inducing distortion” it blames for the recent financial cris

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