Tuesday, December 09, 2008

The Mother of All Unintended Consequences Looms...continued

Comptroller Dugan Highlights Re-default Rates on Modified Loans (emphasis added):
WASHINGTON — Comptroller of the Currency John C. Dugan said today that new data shows that more than half of loans modified in the first quarter of 2008 fell delinquent within six months.

“After three months, nearly 36 percent of the borrowers had re-defaulted by being more than 30 days past due. After six months, the rate was nearly 53 percent, and after eight months, 58 percent,” the Comptroller said in remarks at the Office of Thrift Supervision’s National Housing Forum today.

Mr. Dugan spoke during a panel discussion with OTS Director John Reich, Federal Reserve Board Vice Chairman Donald Kohn, FDIC Chairman Sheila Bair, and Federal Housing Finance Agency Director James Lockhart.

A key question, Mr. Dugan said, is why is the number of re-defaults so high? “Is it because the modifications did not reduce monthly payments enough to be truly affordable to the borrowers? Is it because consumers replaced lower mortgage payments with increased credit card debt? Is it because the mortgages were so badly underwritten that the borrowers simply could not afford them, even with reduced monthly payments? Or is it a combination of these and other factors?”

That question “has important ramifications for the foreclosure crisis and how policymakers should address loan modifications, as they surely will in the coming weeks and months,” the Comptroller added...
Related: The Mother of All Unintended Consequences Looms


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