A Comeback for Mortgage Bonds?

The market for private-label mortgage bonds in the United States might be ready for revival, Breakingviews says. The housing-induced credit crisis has shut it down for almost two years. But a handful of firms, independently of each other, are working on deals that could hit the market by June, the publication remarks. Any new issue of mortgage bonds lacking guarantees from the government-run agencies Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac will need to be squeaky clean” and the seller might lose money, the publication says. The bonds in the works would probably be backed by jumbo mortgages, loans mostly bigger than about $730,000, depending on location, that Fannie and Freddie won’t accept, Breakingviews says. If successful, it would be the first such deal since May 2008. [Read the full article]

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Personal debt wasn’t the kind of economic indicator anyone paid too much attention to until America’s collective cash-out refinancing bender nearly collapsed the world economy. Since then Americans have been saving more, spending less and paying down their debts, but analysts’ views of what that means have started to differ. The optimists think this is a healthy correction; Michael Widner at Stifel Nicolaus sees a long-term decline in personal debt that threatens to slow the nation’s economy. Household debt as a percentage of gross domestic product, the broadest measure of U.S. economic activity, has been growing steadily for decades as mortgages, credit cards, auto loans and other borrowing have become ubiquitous. That has helped fuel, in part, the consumer spending that has driven a large portion of American economic growth over recent decades. [Read the full article]

Impac Mortgage Holdings, Inc. (NYSE Amex: IMPM), a Maryland corporation, or the “Company,” announces the scheduling of a conference call and live webcast on Tuesday, March 16, 2010 at 9:00 a.m. P.T. (12:00 p.m. E.T.). We will discuss our year end 2009 financial results, which are expected to be filed after the close of market on Monday, March 15, 2010.

To participate in the call, please dial in, up to fifteen minutes prior to the scheduled start time. You may access the call via:

Internet Webcast Access: http://www.impaccompanies.com and link to Investor Relations / Stockholder Relations

The conference call will be archived approximately 2 hours following the call on the Impac Mortgage Holdings, Inc. web site at www.impaccompanies.com, by linking to Investor Relations / Stockholder Relations / Presentations. [Read the full article]

An accounting gimmick called Repo 105 provided financial relief for Lehman Brothers in the months before its spectacular collapse, an autopsy of the once-venerable Wall Street house has found. The question now is whether the trickery spells legal jeopardy for executives of Lehman or its auditors Ernst & Young.

The implosion of Lehman Brothers Holdings Inc. into the biggest bankruptcy in U.S. [Read the full article]

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