“So if you start to hear rumbling that the reviews didn’t turn up many misdeeds, you can discount it as nonsense. One could easily argue that this reported settlement was pushed by the banks so they could limit the damage they would have incurred if an aggressive review had continued.”
Surprise, Surprise: The Banks Win
Bank Settlement May Leave Tiny Slices of a Smaller Pie
IF you were hoping that things might be different in 2013 — you know, that bankers would be held responsible for bad behavior or that the government might actually assist troubled homeowners — you can forget it. A settlement reportedly in the works with big banks will soon end a review into foreclosure abuses, and it means more of the same: no accountability for financial institutions and little help for borrowers.
Last week, The New York Times reported that regulators were close to settling with 14 banks whose foreclosure practices had ridden roughshod over borrowers and the rule of law. Although the deal has not been made official and its terms are as yet unknown, the initial report said borrowers who had lost their homes because of improprieties would receive a total of $3.75 billion in cash. An additional $6.25 billion would be put toward principal reduction for homeowners in distress.
The possible settlement will conclude a regulatory enforcement action brought in 2011 by the Comptroller of the Currency and the Federal Reserve. Regulators moved against 14 large home loan servicers after evidence emerged of rampant misdeeds marring the foreclosure process.