With A Five Year Delay, Banks Are Finally Hiring Foreclosure Experts, As Major AG Changes Guarantee To Delay Any Foreclosure Settlements
This is just too ironic: after possibly sinking the entire mortgage-backed industry in a moronic attempt to maximize fees and minimize expenses, and hiring any carbon based lifeform that knows 5 words of English to engage in rampant robosigning, the banks are finally seeking to recruit foreclosure experts. Um, isn't that about five years too late? And isn't it also an acknowledgement that banks were in essence lying when they testified under oath that they were sufficiently well equipped to handle millions of foreclosures? The FT reports: "Recent job postings on Monster.com and other employment websites indicate that banks are recruiting “foreclosure specialists” and “bankruptcy documentation” experts. Adecco, the world’s largest temporary staffing company, said the number of such job openings was 25 per cent higher than a year ago. Monster.com says it has seen a 16 per cent rise in recruitment for such positions in the past two months." We would be most amused to discover just how many such job postings the seemingly error-proof Wells Fargo has submitted in the past month. Luckily for Wells, the new recruits will fit right at home: "Most of these jobs are lower level and require no more than high school
diploma, according to advertised listings." In other words, few if any will notice the new additions.
The banks have denied that paperwork errors have resulted in improper foreclosures but investigations by the attorneys-general of all 50 states and by federal regulators are prompting the lenders to review their procedures.
“Any attempt that banks have made to automate the foreclosure process is now being set back and that means they will need to hire more people,” said Richard Bove of Rochdale Securities.
He estimates that big lenders will need to boost their foreclosure departments by 10-15 per cent to handle the record number of 6.7m distressed properties in the system.
GMAC is looking for “foreclosure specialists” who would be responsible for “ensuring procedural documentation is filed and completed in accordance with federal/state, investor/insurer and company requirements/guidelines”, according to job postings on Monster.com and employment site Hound.com.
GMAC set off the robo-signing crisis when it became the first lender to halt temporarily the sale of foreclosed properties while it reviewed its procedures
For readers who believe they may be qualified to walk and breathe at the same time, here are some typical prerequsites:
A posting for a bankruptcy document preparation expert on the website of
Everbank, a financial services company based in Jacksonville, Florida,
describes a job opening: “Provide temporary relief to the document
execution team. Access various systems and print out supporting
documentation necessary for the signing officer to review, thus enabling
them to attest to personal knowledge of loan status.”
Great. Now if only these requirements had been submitted in 2008 when the bulk of the foreclosure wave was starting, perhaps funds such as Iridian wouldn't be betting the farm on the complete collapse of the MBS system.
Luckily, it won't be too difficult to fill the required positions:
Most of these jobs are lower level and require no more than high school
diploma, according to advertised listings. Mr. Bove said that banks have
a good reason for not wanting to talk about their hiring plans. “Saying
you are hiring is the same as admitting you have a problem,” he said.
Which is why very few are actually willing to discuss what their hiring needs are:
GMAC declined to specify how many people it had added to its foreclosure
review process, but said the majority had been redeployed from other
areas within the bank.
And while understaffing is one reason why banks are scrambling to get back on the foreclosure track, Charlie Gasparino reports that another big question for banks is the imminent landslide change in political composition of numerous states, which will certainly be a major set back to reaching a prompt settlement with the ongoing attorney general investigation.
The nation’s top banks are worried that a possible sea-change in the make-up of state attorneys general after tonight’s mid-term elections could delay a settlement of the state AG’s wide-ranging investigation into so called “robo signing” of mortgage foreclosure documentation, FOX Business Network has learned.
Though the state probe spearheaded by Iowa AG Tom Miller is still in its initial phases, executives at the top banks say progress has recently been made in crafting a global settlement of charges that the banks denied mortgage holders who defaulted on their loans due process by hiring robo signers. The robo signers basically rubber stamped foreclosures without proper documentation.
But a volatile electorate, that may force many incumbents out of office tonight, has executives at the big banks worried that a deal will be delayed as a new crop of AGs comes into office. There are 35 state attorney general races being contested tonight, including key races in California, New York and Michigan where there are no clear front runners.
While Democrats hold a 30-20 edge among the state AGs, the composition is likely to change given recent polls showing Republicans looking to gain ground in state elections such as governorships. The Republicans gaining ground aren’t necessarily those who favor the big banks thanks to the Tea Party movement, which has supported candidates who don’t favor bank bailouts and special perks to the big financial firms.
One thing is sure: the new batch of AG will not immediately bend over to Wall Street's whims, knowing full well they will have signed their own career death sentence off the bat should they pursue that course, especially with every blog exposing their actions to the broader population for all to see.