Why Obama's Home Affordable Modification Program Failed (Spoiler Alert: Thank Bank Of America et al)

Tyler Durden's picture

Back when the Executive and Congress at least pretended not to abdicate all power to the Fed, one of the centerpiece programs designed to boost the housing market for the benefit of the poor (as opposed to letting Ben Bernanke make marginal US housing a rental industry owned by a handful of private equity firms and hedge funds), was Barack Obama's Home Affordable Modification Program (or HAMP), which attempted to prevent foreclosures by lowering distressed borrowers’ mortgage payments. Under the program, homeowners would be given trial modifications to prove they can make reduced payments before the changes become permanent. The program was a disaster as of the 3 million foreclosures that were targeted for modification in 2009, only 905,663 mods have been successful nearly five years later - a tiny 13% of the 6.9 million who applied (still, numbers which Obamacare would be delighted to achieve). Part of the reason: the program's reliance on the same industry that sold shoddy mortgages during the housing bubble and improperly sped foreclosures afterward. But there was much more. For the definitive explanation of everything else that went wrong, we go to Bloomberg's Hugh Son whose masterpiece released today explains how and why once again the banks - and especially one of them - won, and everyone else lost.

The story begins at Bank of America where instead of helping homeowners as promised under agreements with the U.S. Treasury Department, the bailed out bank stalled them with repeated requests for paperwork and incorrect income calculations, according to nine former Urban Lending employees. Urban Lending was one of the vendors brought in to handle grievances from lawmakers and regulators on behalf of borrowers, also operated a mail-processing center for HAMP documents. Some borrowers were sent into foreclosure or pricier loan modifications padded with fees resulting from the delays, according to the people, all but two of whom asked to remain anonymous because they signed confidentiality agreements. Curiously, Bank of America authorized Urban Lending to refer to itself as the Office of the CEO and President in letters and telephone conversations to "provide a seamless experience for homeowners who complained directly to Moynihan" in a way that would represent Urban and other vendors like Urban is as an extension of Bank of America.

Son chronicles the accounts of former employees of the BofA (non-) division who help explain why Obama’s plan fell far short of the 3 million averted foreclosures targeted in 2009.

The story continues, once again, at Bank of America:

Bank of America stands out in a program that lawmakers and former Federal Deposit Insurance Corp. Chairman Sheila Bair have called a failure, leaving many homeowners worse off. The second-largest U.S. lender canceled more trial modifications than any mortgage firm and sent the highest percentage of rejected customers into foreclosure, Treasury data show.


To help run its modification program, Bank of America relied on managers who had worked at Countrywide Financial Corp., the subprime lender it took over in 2008. Those executives created and enforced quotas for resolving complaints, according to the former employees. Among them was Rebecca Mairone, found liable by a federal jury in October for defrauding government-backed housing companies Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac while working at Countrywide.


Urban Lending staff, struggling to meet those quotas, resorted to falsifying records and improperly purging complaints, the people said. They sent letters containing inaccurate statements on Office of the CEO and President stationery to lawmakers and U.S. agency officials who sought assistance on behalf of borrowers, the former employees said.

Next, we learn some more about how Bank of America took its foreclosure modification duties seriously:

Tens of thousands of HAMP modifications were improperly denied by Bank of America and Urban Lending since April 2009, according to a July complaint filed by homeowners against the two companies in federal court in Colorado.


Everyone knew that we weren’t helping people,” said Erik Schnackenberg, a customer-service manager who left Urban Lending in 2011 and now runs a yoga studio in Longmont, Colorado. “They were giving us all the pressure and none of the power to change anything. It was this absurd, self-contained ecosystem of worthlessness.”


Schnackenberg and other former employees, who spent from four months to three years at Urban Lending as customer-service representatives and auditors, said they spoke when contacted by Bloomberg News because they’re distressed by what they saw.

To be sure, the relationship was quite lucrative for Urban Lending...

Revenue at Urban Lending surged to $183.5 million last year from $8 million in 2007, making it one of the country’s fastest-growing minority-owned businesses, according to Black Enterprise magazine. Sanders, whose other holdings include the Pittsburgh restaurant Savoy and a stake in energy-drink maker Fever, declined to comment for this article.


Urban Lending expanded in Colorado after winning the Bank of America contract, moving into a five-story brick building in Broomfield with views of the Rocky Mountains. The firm also had a warehouse in Broomfield for processing documents from tens of thousands of HAMP applications.


There, unopened mail was stacked to the ceiling, said three people who spent time at the warehouse. Time-sensitive documents such as pay stubs grew stale, and paperwork was scanned into computer systems late or partially, triggering loan-modification rejections, the people said.

... if only the outfit took its tasks as seriously as it deposited the Bank of America checks. It turns out the only work that was taken seriously was how to find shortcuts to doing any actual work:

At the office in Broomfield, Urban Lending employees examined every letter from lawmakers to determine which were computer-generated and which were signed by a human, according to four former employees. The handwritten ones got special attention and were called wet signatures, they said. The others were referred to as dry.


The signatures of some U.S. senators, including Democrats Harry Reid of Nevada, Carl Levin of Michigan and Charles Schumer of New York, were enlarged to two to three feet and tacked on the walls of a quality-control room to help employees identify wet signatures, the people said.

It was only downhill from there:

The most common tactic used to stall and reject homeowners was to claim they hadn’t submitted paperwork, according to all nine former employees. Urban Lending requested new applications and supporting documents including pay stubs every 30 to 60 days, even if the customer had sent them, the people said.


“People went through years of sending documents in,” said Daniel Ellersdorfer, 37, a customer advocate who left Urban Lending after 13 months in September 2012 and is now a scuba-diving instructor. “There were people who did everything right and they would still get screwed over and have to start the modification process all over.”

What was the motivation to delay the process? Simple: fees, and natural attrition that would ultimately make the applicants unacceptable for modification:

Borrowers whose modifications were delayed for a year or longer accumulated thousands of dollars in fees and interest and were disqualified for HAMP because their debt-to-income ratios worsened over time, four former Urban Lending employees said. Foreclosure or modifications under the bank’s own program, typically with higher interest rates, often became the only options, the people said.


Bank of America said it had given 891,100 of its own modifications as of October, more than three times as many as provided under HAMP. That’s because most of the bank’s customers didn’t qualify for the government plan, Sturzenegger said. The bank gave legal assignments, title searches and appraisals to its own subsidiaries, including Recontrust and LandSafe. Fees charged to homeowners ranged from about $45 a month to inspect the outsides of homes to about $850 for legal filings, according to three former Urban Lending employees.

Sure enough, if it was Bank of America's intent to accumulate the largest possible inventory of houses in foreclosure it did so admirably, with a trial foreclosure rate under HAMP of 33%: double the industry average, and the highest of the big bank participants.

Bank of America, which inherited hundreds of thousands of overdue borrowers from Countrywide, sent 33 percent of canceled HAMP trials into foreclosure through the end of July, the highest percentage of any of the biggest servicers, Treasury data show. The figure was 27 percent for Wells Fargo & Co. and 20 percent for both JPMorgan Chase & Co. and Citigroup Inc. The industry average was 22 percent.



“While the country as a whole has made significant progress, there is still room for improvement for servicers, and the Treasury is committed to applying pressure on the mortgage-servicing industry to improve servicer behavior,” Treasury Deputy Assistant Secretary Tim Bowler said in an e-mail.

The fact that Urban Lending was staffed with grotesquely underqualified workers certainly helped the end-goal of sequestering as much property as possible into shadow inventory, and thus taking it off the market (why: read all about Foreclosure Stuffing here).

The reality of working at Urban Lending contrasted with the training they received, six of the people said. Recruits were told during six-week introductory sessions that they were being paid $16 to $18 an hour to help Americans keep their homes.

Once they started, employees learned that Bank of America quotas applied to everyone from customer advocates to auditors and quality-control staff, the people said. They worked 15-hour days and on weekends with the knowledge they could be fired if they couldn’t meet targets. Properly resolving complaints was often impossible because Urban Lending employees couldn’t access needed files among a dozen software programs and relied on Bank of America personnel who often ignored requests, they said.

“Smart people would leave right away,” said Schnackenberg, the former Urban Lending manager. “You were left with people trying to take care of complex, aged files who were formerly assistant manager of a Taco Bell. It was a recipe for failure for homeowners.”

Under pressure from bank managers to close cases, Urban Lending workers resorted to shortcuts, six people said. That included forging power-of-attorney letters or removing notations that a customer hired a lawyer, making it easier to close files.

Managers purged complaints after business hours, circumventing an internal review process set up by Accenture Plc, according to two of the people. Employees falsified records to show late-night conversations with borrowers that didn’t happen, the people said.

In retrospect, with such rampant, unsupervised (or perhaps premeditated) criminality going on, one can see why the big banks were (and are) so eager to pay up any settlement proposal they get from Eric Holder, as long as nobody ends up in jail, and guilt is neither admitted nor denied of course.

But the biggest irony is perhaps that Bank of America used none other than the very same employees who originally were peddling the mortgages to consumers at Countrywide (purchased by Bank of America in the worst M&A deal of all time), to facilitate the HAMP "goals":

Bank of America used ex-Countrywide managers to push Urban Lending to meet its goals, according to the former employees. One of them was Mairone, the only individual named in the government’s first mortgage lawsuit from the financial crisis to reach trial.


Mairone was part of the Countrywide team that set up a program known as the Hustle, which removed quality-control steps for mortgages sold to Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac, costing the U.S.-backed firms $863.6 million, according to a Nov. 8 filing by prosecutors in federal court in New York.


She helped create Bank of America’s HAMP policies as the firm’s lead default-servicing executive, according to the July lawsuit.

Where is Mairone now? "Mairone joined JPMorgan in 2012 and now oversees vendors for that bank, according to a New York Times article." It really doesn't get any more hilarious than this...

Not stupid, Bank of America of course realized that one day an article such as this one would come out, so it took preventative steps:

Urban Lending employees were told by trainers that they should never admit fault on the bank’s behalf in writing or over the phone, four former workers said. They were warned that e-mails could be subpoenaed, the people said.


To soothe homeowners frustrated by delays, employees had a monthly allotment of $25 and $50 gift cards they could give customers, said three of the former workers. The joke among staff: It was just enough money to buy moving boxes.


Urban Lending employees said they were told by their managers that the orders to reduce homeowners’ complaints came directly from Moynihan and Bank of America board members, who checked caseload figures daily. One such push was called the “Drive to Five,” a plan in late 2010 to lower complaints to 5,000 from more than 15,000.

None other than BofA CEO Brian Moynihan has spoken of the bank's perverse conflicts of interest in this matter: "He told an Atlanta Rotary Club prayer breakfast in October 2011 that foreclosing is “always the option of last resort,” according to prepared remarks. "Foreclosure is not only the worst outcome for a customer, it’s also the worst financial outcome for the servicer and the owner of the mortgage,” he said. “The best decisions are the ones that go beyond our own narrow self-interest.”

This, of course, is a lie: recall that the explicit subsidy that is stuffing bank balance sheets to the gills with "shadow inventory" achieved its mission perfectly: removing millions of housing units in supply from the market, and in the process creating an artificial subsidy as demand had to chase artificially reduced supply, thus pushing home prices higher, and in the process making home ownership far less affordable for everyone else, especially those Americans who not only dutifully pay their taxes, but have a steady job and are willing to pay the monthly mortgage fee. It is they who were and are most impacted by Bank of America's actions. As for the bank, now that prices are artificially higher by 10%, 20% or more percent, watch as slowly but surely the BofA, JPMs and Wells proceed to release ever more housing inventory from their balance sheets, but from a far higher equilibrium price, thus affording them a few quarters of selling into what is still a sellers market, if not for much longer.

But perhaps the best way to visualize how HAMP failed, is through a case study:

Jose De Santiago, a municipal inspector in Mission Viejo, California, was in the midst of a modification in December 2011 when he got the letter: He had five days to leave his two-bedroom condo. De Santiago, 43, spent Christmas packing his belongings with his son Joseph, then 13, and was out the next day.


After a Bloomberg News reporter alerted the lender’s communications department, Bank of America bought the condo from Alton Holdings Inc., which had purchased it in a foreclosure auction. A bank lawyer apologized, and De Santiago was allowed to move back after two weeks.


Bank of America offered $5,000 to compensate him for furniture lost in the eviction, according to a draft of a proposed settlement. De Santiago refused because he would have had to sign a liability release, he said. He’s still fighting the lender to get it to repair his credit scores.


“They asked me to put in writing how well they treated me,” De Santiago said. “I can’t believe Bank of America was allowed to do the horrible things it did to me and others.” Bank of America’s Sturzenegger said some customers who should have received government assistance may have fallen through the cracks of the system the lender created.


“If you went back and re-reviewed the documents, based on today, would they have qualified for HAMP?” Sturzenegger said. “Possibly. That’s the best way to answer it.”

And with Bank of America doing all of the above, one can be certain that every other bank was doing the same.

As for the endgame: "The CEO, dogged by investors’ questions about mortgage costs since taking over in 2010, is dismantling the division that handles delinquent borrowers. The unit had 6,200 contractors as of June, down from its peak of 16,900 last year."

Since the grotesquely criminal behavior described above likely only touches the surface of what went on at Bank of America et al, one can see why, and one wonders: just what else will be revealed when the centrally-planned experiment to prevent the grand reset finally fails and the Fed's liquidity tide finally goes out. Whatever it is, we can fast forward to the conclusion and inform American taxpayers that the biggest losers will, once again, be you.

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q99x2's picture

Anything associated with that fool's fake name is a failure.

max2205's picture

FSA would say it ain't no thang

Four chan's picture

in 2014 any modification ie principal write down will be taxable, starting a whole new wave of walk aways,

so much for the housing recovery, and so much for mark to market accounting coming back.

putaipan's picture

didn't read it. but - calling the ghost of assange's lost dump....

Yes We Can. But Lets Not.'s picture

Agreed.  HAMP failed because the executive responsible for it, Barack Obama, is a feckless, sophomoric, incompetent, thoroughly dishonest boob.  It is my hope that the world survives the ridiculous and pathetic acsendance of this asswipe without millions ultimately dying due to his failings.

NoDebt's picture

Yeah.  He shafts the people he's trying to help almost as bad as he shafts his enemies.  This guy is called 'zero' for a reason.  That's what you'll get from him.  What he takes from you will be significantly more than zero.

Obama is a bankers best friend.  He might be the only guy in the last 50 years who could have stepped in as a new president and BROKEN UP THE GODDAMNED BIG BANKS.  But did he even entertain that idea?  Nope.  Sure as hell wasn't interested in that "fundamental transformation."  Gotta keep those contributions flowing into his never-ending campaign.  What he went for was the biggest stinking pile of graft and corruption this nation has ever seen.  Everything he touches is saturated with it.  Everything.

THAT'S the Chicago way.  Because Obama.

Boris Alatovkrap's picture

"Barack Obama, is a feckless, sophomoric, incompetent, thoroughly dishonest boob."

Are you forget sociopath crack addict, no? Now is make perfect sense why Vlad can pwn Barry so easy. Heck is even Kim Jung Mental ill and Fidel Castro is make joke about Barry.

Oracle of Kypseli's picture

Boris, you outdid yourself here. I did not see post from you for a few days and I panicked. 

Your humor is much appreciated by many here.

All Risk No Reward's picture

HAMP didn't fail, it was a roaring success.  So was the schooling system that miseducated people so they can't see the big fat elephant in the middle of the room.

Housing Asset Mining Program did great.  It was ENGINEERED by banks to MAXIMIZE THEIR PROFITS.  You do know how the power structure works and you do know how corporate law demands corporations maximize their profits, right?

OK, it is really simply.  TYhe banks were paying a monthly CDS insurance fee on the very worst mortgages held by the people who couldn't really afford them easily.

The trick was to given them a "push" over the edge, as it were.

So the Banksters wrote a bill that allowed them to promise help to people after they missed three payments first.  When the three payments were missed, THE BANKSTER REJECTED THE CLAIMS THROUGH FRAUD AND THE BANKSTER CONTROLLED GOVERNMENT OFFERED THEM PROSECUTION PROTECTION FOR THEIR CRIMES.

The "on the edge" people were then told to pony up 3 payments plus interest plus late fees.  THIS WAS THE PUSH.




Read Art of War, people.

All war is deception.

The best warriors NEVER have to fight.

Pretend inferiority.

Endless war is an attempt to bankrupt the host nation.



Your arrogance is being used to deceive you.  You selfish is being used to destroy your country, state, county, city and community.

We have to elevate our game plan here.

The article writer is likely financed by the establishment, SO THEY CAN'T TELL YOU THE TRUTH.


waterhorse's picture

Nope, not feckless or incompetent.   Sophomoric and dishonest?  Of course.  As Robert Rubin's protege, this was a willful and intentional control fraud perpetrated on borrowers, in an effort to once again land-grab and skim any remaining wealth from the middle/lower classes.  

Eireann go Brach's picture

Criminal behavior, kicking families out of homes, forging documents and lying, is all part and parcel of the banking system these days! All Americans accept this and turn a blind eye!

This is your fucking legacy Obama you fucking pathetic Kenyan Cunt! You had a chance to clean up the banking system, but you are too busy taking the banking bribes and hanging with Jay Z and Beyonce!




Boris Alatovkrap's picture

You are forget Barry also is very busy permanent crack cocaine high intermittent between chooming and meth haze. Amazing can even read teleprompter some day.

All Risk No Reward's picture

Would appealing to your conscience work should a cockroach or a termite do it?

Think about it.

These criminals think you are a dumb animal and can't wait to financially RAID you and yours.

We need to wake up, put the big boy pants on and fully realize what is in play here.  The system's passiveness is one of its most evil features because it blinds most people to its aggressiveness.

Youtube "The Ultimate Revolution Aldous Huxley" and "The Ultimate History Lesson with John Taylor Gatto" for a dose of reality.

waterhorse's picture

But Obama is himself a Rubin protégé. He staffed his administration with Rubin acolytes and disciples – including Timothy Geithner as Treasury secretary, Lawrence Summers as chief economist, Peter Orzag as director of the Office of Management and Budget, Jack Lew, Michael Froman, Gene Sperling and more. The result was a revival of the old gospel. The Obama administration rescued the banks without restructuring them. No one has yet been held accountable for what the FBI called the “epidemic of fraud” that inflated the housing bubble.

stocktivity's picture

President Obama and his family will leave Washington Dec. 20 for a 17-day holiday vacation in Hawaii.

The White House announced Friday that the Obamas will depart next week after what is expected to be a light work schedule for the president in Washington.

The president and his family traditionally spend their Christmas break in a rented home on Oahu with spectacular ocean views.

Boris Alatovkrap's picture

If AmeriKa is smart (not obvious fact), give Barry ocean view from several league under with aggregate concrete footwear. But Amerika is not smart, or is lack of total testicular fortitude to preserve great nation status for future generation. Is better for China, Russia, Cuba and Islamofascist world wide. Oh, is also good for bankster class.

putaipan's picture

boris is reference to jim willie underwater sea park lock up? boris is say 'them' is 'them' ? uh-oh.

is up shit creeksi with ought a paddle.

disabledvet's picture

I'm at the point now where starting a bank or some other type of "open spigot to mouth blast out loans from keister" type business model looks pretty good. I don't have to pay you interest...you pay me 18%...and I get money for free from the discount window in both unlimited quatity and duration. just say the word "oil" and I'm there! if something goes wrong "that's the taxpayers fault." as Bugs Bunny said "so long screwy, see ya in St. Loiuie!"

FreedomGuy's picture

I believe the Fed is just the bartender hired to pour the drinks for the alcoholic (Congress).

The alcoholic Congress thinks it can run anything; housing, banking, healthcare, etc. Good intentions are all that is needed.

krispkritter's picture

Foreclosures for Failures.  The banks and predatory lenders along with certain manipulators of the foreclosure process were making a killing at the expense of millions of people caught in extraordinary circumstances of failing job markets and pay scales.  Screw the bottom percentage that never should have had a mortgage in the first place, the percentages that struggled to keep up with their mortgages but faced foreclosure in the face of single missed payments or refinancing gone-wrong was outright corruption by the lending institutions.  As part of the selling off of 'bad loans' to POS institutions like Green Tree and others, banks were required to sell them good mortgages as well.  So now you have a predatory system where a lender does everything it can to take a performing loan with equity and turn it into a foreclosure it can rake in the return on, way in excess of interest.  Green Tree is just one of many BoA turned to(and I know this by personal experience) and where the assuming lender will do almost anything to force a property into foreclosure simply for profit.  These lenders should be shuttered by .Gov but they're to busy bailing out Freddie and Fannie to do anything for the average mortgage holder.  Can't bury this one fast enough me and I got caught in it just because of a bad builder, from reading the blogs, sites, and social pages on some of these bad lenders, I can only imagine what others are going through.

loveyajimbo's picture

I really wonder if BO didn't spring full grown from Beezlebub's asshole...

waterhorse's picture

Meh.  Obama is a puppet.  But I'm absolutely POSITIVE Robert Rubin sprang out full grown from Beezlebub's asshole.

chump666's picture

Obama is destroying America

ChaosEquilibrium's picture

American Elitists are destroying America!


nmewn's picture

Urban Lending Corp...it just sounds...so helpful ;-)

Ness.'s picture

So this is how BAC can "afford" a $10B stock buyback and raise thier dividend by 50%. Ok, I get it now.





Ness.'s picture

Dammit.  Scotch got me again.  Fuck BAC anyway.

booboo's picture

"It was this absurd, self-contained ecosystem of worthlessness.”

Quote of the day that can be used for so many useless government and quasi government (BANKS) institutions.

One And Only's picture

This was Bush's fault and racist tea baggers!

ChaosEquilibrium's picture

Same as it ever was........UNTIL the blood begins flowing!


BoA-Citi-GS-JP......ALL could be brought up on RICO....and should....it might be the only thing that saves  the bankers lives......2 fencerows of 20 ft. barbed wire.....brick walls...no windows...and steel bars!

Seasmoke's picture

This more than any other issue that Barry lied about. Is the one I hate him for the most. I hate Obama not Because he is black. But because of his HAMP lies and putting 3 million families on a greater path to being homeless.

insanelysane's picture

Whenever the bankstas fuck with me over paperwork or payments, I contact my state attorney general immediately and then send the bankstas a letter with a copy of the complaint I filed.

fxrxexexdxoxmx's picture

Sending the documents through the USPS Return Receipt Requested at least proves they got something from you. It only costs a few bucks and is one thing USPS does fairly well.

insanelysane's picture

I worked one summer for USPS as a fill in for carriers on vacation.  We were told that if you lost one of those you would be fired.  That was a while ago and all of those were locked in a cage and each person that took possession of the return receipt doc had to sign for it.  The people that kept sending documents in should have sent them this way the first time and once the bank "lost" them the first time, at least the second time.

MilwaukeeMark's picture

In China these crooks would be put on trial and summararily shot. It's amazing how that cuts down on recitivism.

bondman1's picture

Wachovia's purchase of Golden West, the biggest sub primer in California is a close second to B of A and Countrywide. Two years after that closed it blew a 50 billion hole in Wachovia's balance sheet and ended with a $1/ share takeover by Wells Fargo.

ElvisDog's picture

I don't know, but for some reason this story doesn't get my blood boiling. At all. I must be suffering from corruption fatigue syndrome (CFS).

starman's picture

For the benefit of the poor? That's called Salvation Army.

joego1's picture

Everyone thought I was crazy to pay off my mortgage. This article makes me glad I did.

BeetleBailey's picture

Here's hoping Obungle will get eaten by a shark in Hawaii.

Anyone that does business with a TBTF bank is a chump.


Legolas's picture

What do you want to bet they also cherry picked the homes that would get foreclosed on?

I would love to see a statistical analysis of the failures, house demographics, homeowner qualifications, homeowner race, loan value to appraisal value, etc.. 

Who would insure the banks on the properties under this type of program? 


bunnyswanson's picture

Chase bank complaints http://www.consumeraffairs.com/finance/chase_bank.html

The stories are gut wrenching.  The blatant dereliction of duty is an affront to any respectable person.  There is a palpable disdain being displayed to the customers of banks in America.  This consists of a condescending and flippant flavored rapport with an entity which, even to me, addressed with a professional and helpful manner.  Bad information, failure to provide information, hang ups, and time-consuming legalese bantering with a person determined to relay the message:  You are inferior to me.  It is enough to make one break down and cry and millions of men and women have, in America and abroad.

That nothing is done about this after the stories in the press and fines, humiliation and congressional hearings is another message:   Nothing you do will stop us from ripping your country out from under your feet, one house, one business, one dead citizen at a time.


http://www.consumeraffairs.com/finance/chase_mortgage.html (mtg reviews added)

I Write Code's picture

I'm sure that all the stories are true, but what is vague are the motivations.  I was dealing with BofA at the time on some family accounts, I had to submit the same paperwork three times.  When I say submit, I went into the bank, handed it to a guy, who went in back and "sent" it via fax to wherever.  Apparently it was then lost.  I got a letter from the bank saying if I didn't submit the paperwork they would give me my money back!  And there was nobody I could call to respond to the letter.  But then some guy called me from wherever, told me they'd never received anything, and he gave me a fax number and a phone number to call him if needed.  I faxed (or emailed, I forget) the same three pages, and then he was happy.  So it was never done out of greed, just out of massive incompetence and systemic stupidity.

As a matter of fact I also worked for BofA ex-Countrywide on two projects both involved with counting all the delinquent and modified loans.  Two disasterous and violently mismanaged projects.  But I got to know some of the playas.  Disgusting wretches. As Countrywide they cut corners all day long, lied, and made stuff up, the the cube monkeys just laughed, insofar as they understood, which was usually about zilch.

But here's the thing, that first HAMP law was just totally misconceived.  It attempted only to give modifications to the *worst* cases, which were generally hopeless and fraudulent and most were speculators anyway, not families struggling to have a roof over their heads.  Meanwhile the best cases, people still paying for underwater loans, were REFUSED by law, not by the bank.  A year later they reversed it and started offering modifications to the *best* cases, but I was long gone by then, I assume that went somewhat better.

Legolas asked if they cherry-picked the foreclosures?  You bet your bippy.  If you were a dollar behind on a saleable property, you were at the head of the line, way ahead of guys who hadn't EVER made a payment on a loan in three years.  I didn't see those cases first-hand inside the bank, just in the news and correlated with what I did see, and the slimeball suits and the laughing monkeys.


FearedDevil's picture

You do realize that BofA absorbed Countrywide which represented 1 out of 6 mortgages made in the United States during that mess yes?

I swear you guys can spin any angle to be negative and yet you are amazing consistent at being the worst at calling any tradable information.

Thank you... for making sure there is always someone on the opposite of the trade.

dunce's picture

What caught my eye was "minority owned business", a formal way of crony capitalism to people with no ability to run any business much like the class mate of the wookie that got the no bid contract to do the software for obamacare.

Clowns on Acid's picture

Well at least the HAMP program did not have a website involved and was not as expensive as ObamaCare. The damage to the US populace and to their health may make it the most expensive Federal program ever.


Pumpkin's picture

A government program that didn't work!!??  Oh, what is the world coming to?

Dollar Bill Hiccup's picture

IF the tide ever goes out.

Maybe we're post tidal.

No more business cycle, no more work, no more worries.


roadhazard's picture

As in every Government boondoggle, what happens is there is ZERO Government OVERSIGHT. You would think the writers of the program (HAMP) would demand it so They wouldn't be made to look bad. As soon as a program moves down to Big Biz you can be assured they are only going to look out for themselves. Congressman Posey played his part and wrote letters until he didn't have to anymore. It's not his money.

Next election we will elect Government officials that ONLY care about the People. heh