Thomas A. Cox is a retired bank lawyer in Portland, Maine who serves as the Volunteer Program Coordinator for the Maine Attorney’s Saving Homes (MASH) program. He represents homeowners in foreclosure, and assists and consults with other volunteer lawyers in providing pro bono legal services to these Maine homeowners.
American Securitization Forum
Testimony before the:
Committee on Financial Services
United States House of Representatives
The Future of Housing Finance—
A Review of Proposals to Address Market Structure and Transition
September 29, 2010
The Future of Housing Finance
September 29, 2010
Chairman Frank, Ranking Member Bachus and distinguished Members of the Committee, my name is Tom Deutsch and as the Executive Director of the American Securitization Forum (the “ASF”)1, I very much appreciate the opportunity to testify here on behalf of the 330 ASF member institutions who originate, structure and invest in the preponderance of residential mortgage-backed securities (“RMBS”) created in the United States, including those backed entirely by private capital as well as those guaranteed by public entities such as Fannie Mae, Freddie Mac and Ginnie Mae (for the purposes of this testimony, collectively, the “Government-Sponsored Enterprises” or “GSEs”).
In this testimony, I seek to address these key issues to the future of US housing finance:
1. Importance of the Process of Securitization to Mortgage Lending
2. Transitional Concerns Related to the GSEs
3. Future Structure of Any Government Role in the Secondary Mortgage Market
4. Return of a Private Secondary Mortgage Market
5. Industry Improvements to the Securitization Market Infrastructure
6. Covered Bonds Legislation
Wednesday, December 1, 2010
09:30 AM – 01:00 PM
538 Dirksen Senate Office Building
The witnesses for Panel I will be: Ms. Phyllis Caldwell, Chief, Homeownership Preservation Office, United States Department of the Treasury; The Honorable Sheila C. Bair, Chairman, Federal Deposit Insurance Corporation; The Honorable Daniel K. Tarullo, Governor, Board of Governors of the Federal Reserve System; Mr. John Walsh, Acting Comptroller of the Currency, Office of the Comptroller of the Currency; and Mr. Edward DeMarco, Acting Director, Federal Housing Finance Agency. The witnesses for Panel II will be: Mr. Terry Edwards, Executive Vice President, Credit Portfolio Management, Fannie Mae; Mr. Donald Bisenius, Executive Vice President, Freddie Mac; Mr. Tom Deutsch, Executive Director, American Securitization Forum; and Professor Kurt Eggert, Professor of Law, Chapman University School of Law.
Individuals with disabilities who require an auxiliary aid or service, including closed captioning service for webcast hearings, should contact the committee clerk at 202-224-7391 at least three business days in advance of the hearing date.
By Jody Shenn and Prashant Gopal – Nov 16, 2010 11:14 AM ET
A trade group for companies that help package loans and leases into securities rejected claims that mortgage-bond trusts can’t prove ownership of debt they hold as Congress began hearings on the foreclosure crisis.
The standard practices of the industry result “if followed, in a valid and enforceable transfer of mortgage notes and the underlying mortgages,” Tom Deutsch, executive director of the New York-based American Securitization Forum, said in a study released today. Lawmakers in Washington ordered hearings on mortgage practices after loan servicers including Ally Financial Inc. and JPMorgan Chase & Co. halted foreclosure proceedings following revelations of so-called robo-signing.
The trade group focused on whether industry practices resulted in securitization trusts taking ownership of loans, though not whether all the paperwork needed for foreclosures is in order. Without taking ownership of mortgages within a set period after their creation, often 90 days, the trusts may be unable to later assemble the documents needed for foreclosures because of contractual requirements or tax rules.
“The law is somewhat unsettled on what actually must be done via a securitization to complete the transfers correctly,” visiting Harvard Law professor Katherine Porter told a Congressional Oversight Panel Oct. 27. Porter has said “there is disagreement on whether the transfer of the notes needed to have occurred individually,” or potentially with a specific endorsement to the new holder or a physical transfer.