Tuesday, 1 March 2011

BofANew Ariz. AG won't drop BofA suit

PHOENIX - Arizona's new Republican attorney general won't give Bank of America any relief from a mortgage fraud lawsuit filed in the final days of his Democratic predecessor's tenure.

Attorney General Tom Horne told The Associated Press on Monday that he'll pursue the suit filed on Dec. 17 alleging that the lender misled and deceived homeowners who tried to modify their mortgages. The suit accuses the bank of repeatedly assuring customers that their loans were being modified to get them to continue making payments, then foreclosing on their homes. ( Read BofA more... )

Kaplan to leave BofA for hedge fund

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Steven Baronoff will again take control of the deals business at Bank of America Merrill Lynch, after the decision by Jeff Kaplan, the global head of mergers and acquisitions, to leave the bank for a hedge fund.

Mr Kaplan, who joined Merrill Lynch in 1987, will become chief operating officer of Appaloosa Management, the hedge fund group founded by David Tepper, according to a message sent to Bank of America employees. ( Read BofA more... )

BofA, Citi Short Interest Up

Citigroup short interest rose to more than 405 million shares from just under 402 million at the end of January. Bank of America short interest passed 85 million shares, up from about 79 million at the end of last month. Bets against Synovus, meanwhile, dropped to roughly 91 million, from about 99 million in the prior period.

It was Regions, however, that saw the biggest percentage drop in short interest. It fell below 41 million shares from more than 58 million at the end of January--a 29% move. ( Read BofA more... )

BofA’s Kaplan Leaves for Appaloosa; Baronoff Named M&A Chief

Bank of America Corp., the biggest U.S. lender by assets, said Steven Baronoff will assume Jeff Kaplan’s duties leading mergers and acquisitions. ( Read BofA more... )

BofA analysts claim GSE reform 'politically infeasible'

Bank of America Merrill Lynch analysts said Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac reform may not be as imminent as many think and could prove to be "politically infeasible."

BofAML hosted a conference call Monday on the state of housing finance in the nation. In slides provided to HousingWire, housing researcher Chris Flanagan describes the mortgage origination outlook for 2011 as "bleak," with prices expected to drop another 3% and volumes down 30%. In short, this year will likely offer no large changes to the mortgage markets compared to last year, and the GSEs dominance may continue to increase. ( Read BofA more... )

BofA’s Laughlin Squeezed by Mortgage Investors, Regulators

By Hugh Son

(Updates with subpoenas in the 13th paragraph.)

Feb. 28 (Bloomberg) -- Bank of America Corp.’s Terry Laughlin, head of a new unit managing foreclosures and soured loans, faces increasing pressure from bond buyers and regulators seeking payback for the firm’s role in the housing collapse.

The bank may face “material fines” from government probes into possible irregularities in foreclosure processes, Charlotte, North Carolina-based Bank of America said late Feb. 25 in its annual report. The firm also said that a bondholder group including Pacific Investment Management Co. has almost doubled the number of mortgage deals on which it’s challenging the bank. Legal costs may be as much as $1.5 billion higher than what the bank had set aside, according to the filing. ( Read BofA more... )

BofA Expects Libya Oil Production To Shut Down Completely

And some more variables to add to the total confusion in everything, from Reuters:
Oil production in Libya is expected to shut down completely and could be lost for a prolonged period of time, Bank of America Merrill Lynch said on Thursday.

"We expect Libyan production to be shut down completely and we might lose sweet crudes from Libya for a prolonged period of time," Bank of America Merrill Lynch analyst Sabine Schels told Reuters.

Schels said that the world faced the prospect of real supply shock in which the loss of 1.6 million barrels per day of sweet oil could potentially trigger a steep rise in prices and force a sharp reduction in demand to balance the system. ( Read BofA more... )

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Courtesy : KTAR , FT , The Street , Buzz Crunch , Housing Wire , Bloomberg & Zero Hedge

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