Obama Touts Lower FHA Premiums Vet Homeowner Relief

first_img March 6, 2012 429 Views in Government, Origination, Secondary Market, Servicing Agents & Brokers Attorneys & Title Companies Barack Obama Carol Galante FHA Fixed-Rate Mortgage Housing Affordability HUD Investors Lenders & Servicers Mortgage Insurance Mortgage Rates Processing Refinance Service Providers Underwriting Standards 2012-03-06 Ryan Schuette Obama Touts Lower FHA Premiums, Vet Homeowner Reliefcenter_img A week before the presidential primary season may well crystallize, the Obama administration revealed Tuesday that it will slash refinance fees for homeowners with loans backed by the “”Federal Housing Administration””:http://portal.hud.gov/hudportal/HUD?src=/program_offices/housing/fhahistory (FHA) and relieve veterans wrongfully foreclosed upon by servicers.[IMAGE]The “”White House””:http://www.whitehouse.gov/ said in a statement that the FHA will slash upfront mortgage insurance premiums to .01 percent for those streamlined refinance loans originated before June 2009 and cut annual fees by half to .55 percent.The administration estimated the changes could impact as many as 2 million to 3 million borrowers with FHA-insured loans, with borrowers able to save close to about $100 each month.├â┬ó├óÔÇÜ┬¼├àÔÇ£No red tape. No runaround from the banks,├â┬ó├óÔÇÜ┬¼├é┬Ø “”President Barack Obama””:http://www.whitehouse.gov/administration/president-obama said in prepared remarks. ├â┬ó├óÔÇÜ┬¼├àÔÇ£If you├â┬ó├óÔÇÜ┬¼├óÔÇ×┬óve been on time on your payments, if you’ve done the right thing, if you’ve acted responsibly, you should have a chance to save that money on your home ├â┬ó├óÔÇÜ┬¼├óÔé¼┼ô perhaps to build up your equity, or just to have more money in your pocket that you can spend on businesses in your community.├â┬ó├óÔÇÜ┬¼├àÔÇ£That would make a huge difference for millions of American families,├â┬ó├óÔÇÜ┬¼├é┬Ø he added.The changes come just as the FHA announced premium increases for lenders last week, with some of the fees in line with a short-term payroll tax cut extension passed by Congress in December.[COLUMN_BREAK]Speaking with _MReport_ Monday, FHA Acting Commissioner “”Carol Galante””:http://portal.hud.gov/hudportal/HUD?src=/about/principal_staff/assistant_secretary_galante called the premium increases “”extremely modest”” and “”something we think will help the [Mutual Mortgage Insurance Fund] in the short term without damaging the markets.””Other policies unveiled by the Obama administration Tuesday will extend relief to military service members and veterans that lost their homes to signing errors with servicers.The relief package touts benefits from the $25-billion servicer settlement, including foreclosure reviews for service members, compensation for those denied by servicers for loan modifications, and relief for others forced into short sales despite permanent station changes.The White House also said that it would channel $10 million to a fund under the Department of Veterans Affairs that backs loans with favorable terms for veterans and extend protections listed under the Servicemember Civil Relief Act to those who served in combat zones. The administration billed the housing benefits as several in a series rolled out by the president since he first announced changes in the State of the Union address in January.Phrases familiar to the president’s housing policies made it into a fact sheet published by the White House, with emphasis in particular on relief for “”responsible homeowners”” and veterans who served in combat.Signaling a stab at campaign rhetoric ahead of Super Tuesday, the fact sheet made a veiled reference to on-again, off-again frontrunner Republican presidential candidate “”Mitt Romney””:http://www.mittromney.com/s/mitt-ann-2012 by saying that “”homeowners should not have to sit and wait for the market to hit bottom to get relief.””Romney said in an “”interview””:http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=S1SCUA_sWmY with the _Las Vegas Review-Journal_ last fall that he would prefer to let the housing market “”hit bottom”” as the foreclosure crisis resolves itself, a fact Obama continues to reportedly harp on in speeches.[_Editor’s Note: To see the full, exclusive interview with FHA Acting Commissioner Carol Galante, “”click here””:http://thefivestar.com/mrptsubscribe/template.php to subscribe to_ MReport _magazine and request our March issue._] Sharelast_img read more

ExistingHome Sales Cool for Second Straight Month

first_imgExisting-Home Sales Cool for Second Straight Month November 20, 2013 405 Views Agents & Brokers Attorneys & Title Companies For-Sale Homes Home Prices Home Sales Housing Supply Investors Lenders & Servicers National Association of Realtors Service Providers 2013-11-20 Tory Barringer in Datacenter_img October saw existing-home sales decline for the second straight month as low inventory propped up prices, the “”National Association of Realtors””:http://www.realtor.org/ (NAR) reported Wednesday.[IMAGE]Total existing-home sales–completed “”transactions””:http://www.realtor.org/news-releases/2013/11/october-existing-home-sales-cool-but-low-inventory-drives-prices of single-family homes, townhomes, condominiums, and co-ops–fell 3.2 percent from September to October, coming out to a seasonally adjusted annual rate of 5.12 million. Compared to last year, sales were still up 6.0 percent, marking the 28th consecutive month of year-over-year improvement.””The erosion in buying power is dampening home sales,”” said NAR chief economist Lawrence Yun. “”Moreover, low inventory is holding back sales while at the same time pushing up home prices in most of the country. More new home construction is needed to help relieve the inventory pressure and moderate price gains.””The national median existing-home price for all housing types was $199,500, up 12.8 percent annually.[COLUMN_BREAK]Part of the rise in median price came from a smaller share of discounted distressed sales: Foreclosures and short sales together made up 14 percent of October’s sales (9 percent foreclosures and 5 percent short sales) compared to 25 percent last year.At the same time, inventory remains a challenge. The total number of existing homes available for sale at the end of October was 2.13 million, down 1.8 percent year-over-year. At the current sales pace, inventory levels come to a 5.0-month supply, NAR reported.As has been the case for some time, the West felt the greatest strain from low supply, reporting a 7.1 percent monthly drop in existing-home sales to a pace of 1.17 million. Compared to October 2012, sales were down 0.8 percent.All the other regions saw declines, though not as dramatic: Existing-home sales fell 2.9 percent in the Northeast to an annual rate of 670,000; 1.6 percent in the Midwest to a rate of 1.22 million; and 1.9 percent in the South to an annual level of 2.06 million.Besides supply problems, another obstacle stands in the way: an “”unnecessarily restrictive”” credit environment, NAR says.””Although mortgage interest rates are still historically affordable, some financially qualified buyers are being denied a loan,”” said NAR president Steve Brown. “”The risk-averse nature of lending also is impacting small builders who are unable to get construction loans, even when they see strong local demand.””We simply have to reverse the pendulum swing back toward the middle to give more creditworthy borrowers access to safe and sound financing.”” Sharelast_img read more

US Home Price Index Pace Continues Deceleration

first_img in Daily Dose, Data, Headlines, News Home Prices S&P/Case Shiller Home Price Indices 2014-12-30 Seth Welborn U.S. Home Price Index Pace Continues Deceleration Home prices in the U.S. increased at a slower pace in October than in September, although eight cities experienced growth at a faster rate, according to the latest S&P/Case-Shiller Home Price Index released by S&P/Dow Jones Indices on Tuesday.The rate of home price growth eased for both the 10- and 20-city composite indices year-over-year in October compared to September. The 10-city composite gained 4.4 percent year-over-year in October, compared to 4.7 in September, while the 20-city composite experienced a 4.5 percent year-over-year gain in October – down from 4.8 percent in September. The national index, which covers all nine U.S. census divisions, saw a year-over-year gain of 4.6 percent in October compared to 4.8 percent in September.Eight cities out of the 20-city composite, however, scored higher year-over-year gains than the average for the composite, led by Miami (9.5 percent) and San Francisco (9.1 percent). Las Vegas had the lowest annual return in October with a decline of 1.2 percent.Both composite indices experienced slight month-over-month declines in home prices (0.1 percent) from September to October for the second straight month while the national index saw a decrease of 0.2 percent. The two cities with the largest month-over-month increases in October were San Francisco and Tampa at 0.8 percent each while Chicago and Cleveland had the largest declines for the month at 1.0 percent and 0.7 percent, respectively.Ten cities out of the 20-city composite reported lower month-over-month percentages, while eight cities reported increases from September to October. Two cities, Detroit and San Diego, reported no month-over-month change. The city with the largest month-over-month increase in home prices was San Francisco (0.8 percent).”After a long period when home prices rose, but at a slower pace with each passing month, we are seeing hints that prices could end 2014 on a strong note and accelerate into 2015,” said David M. Blitzer, Managing Director and Chairman of the Index Committee at S&P Dow Jones Indices. “Two months ago, all 20 cities were experiencing weakening annual price increases. Last month, 18 experienced weakness. This time, 12 cities had weaker annual price growth, but eight saw the pace of price gains pick up. Seasonally adjusted, all 20 cities had higher prices than a month ago.”Blitzer noted that while most economic reports for November and early December have generally been positive, most housing industry statistics for that period have not been.”Third quarter GDP was revised to 5 percent real growth at annual rates, and unemployment was at 5.8 percent as payrolls added over 300,000 jobs in November,” Blitzer said. “Housing was somber: housing starts pulled back 1.6 percent, existing home sales were at 4.93 million, down 6.1 percent, and new home sales were 438,000, down 1.6 percent, all in November.”center_img December 30, 2014 615 Views Sharelast_img read more

Over Half of Underwater Borrowers Are Nowhere Near ReSurfacing Report Says

first_img Borrowers who owe more money to banks than their home is worth is slowing decreasing, however more than half of these borrowers are stuck in an underwater free fall with little to no hope of resurfacing.According to Zillow’s first quarter Negative Equity Report released today, although the negative equity rate is falling, more than half or 4 million homeowners owed the bank at least 20 percent more than the worth of their home. In order for these underwater homeowners to even come close to breaking a sale, their homes would have to appreciate by at least 20 percent.”It’s great news that the level of negative equity is falling, but what really worries me is the depth of negative equity,” said Dr. Stan Humphries, Zillow’s chief economist. “Millions of Americans are so far underwater, it’s likely they may not re-gain equity for up to a decade or more at these rates,” “And because negative equity is concentrated so heavily at the lower end, it throws a real wrench in the traditional housing market conveyor belt.”Zillow reported that the U.S. rate of negative equity among mortgaged homeowners was 15.4 percent in first quarter of 2015, a decrease from 16.9 percent last quarter. A year ago, this rate was 18.8 percent. The rate of underwater homeowners was much higher among the homes with the least value.Negative equity improved in all of the 35 largest housing markets in the first quarter, Zillow says. This could be a sign that the country is steadily recovering from the lax lending rules and subsequent housing market bust of the last decade.More than 15 million homeowners owed more on their mortgages than their homes were worth, placing them in negative equity at the peak of the real estate crisis, the report says. Foreclosures, short sales, and rapidly rising home values saved 7.9 million of these homeowners from the pool of negative equity by the end of the first quarter. Those that remain underwater are expected to be the most severe cases to repair.Spring and summer are the busiest buying and selling seasons, Zillow says in the report. This year, there has been a high demand for homes in the bottom third of the market. However, a disproportionate number of those homeowners can not afford to sell to buyers looking for homes in their price range. Zillow found that more than 25 percent of those who own the least valuable third of homes were upside down, compared to about 8 percent of the most valuable third of homes.“Potential first-time buyers have difficulty finding affordable homes for sale because those homes are stuck in negative equity. And owners of those homes can’t move up the chain because they’re stuck underwater in the entry-level home they bought years ago. The logjam at the bottom is having ripple effects throughout the market, and as home value growth slows, it will be years before it gets cleared up. In the meantime, we’ll be left with volatile prices, limited inventory, tepid demand, elevated foreclosures, and a whole lot of frustration.”Home values are forecast to continue rising, but at a slower pace than recent years, Zillow says. Quicken Loans, reported on Tuesday that the difference between appraiser and homeowner perceptions of home values continued to increase for the fourth consecutive month in May. For the first time in 22 months, appraiser opinions of home values were 1.15 percent lower than homeowner estimates, according to Quicken Loans’ national Home Price Perception Index (HPPI).“The HPPI, more than anything, is a reminder that there is no such thing as a national housing market,” said Bob Walters, Quicken Loans chief economist. “Every city, and every neighborhood, moves in different directions based on local factors. Consumers need to remember to watch their local area closely to understand the direction their market is heading.”Click here to view Zillow’s Negative Equity Report. Home Values Negative Equity Report Underwater Mortgage Zillow 2015-06-12 Staff Writer Share June 12, 2015 521 Views center_img in Daily Dose, Data, Headlines, News, Uncategorized Over Half of Underwater Borrowers Are Nowhere Near Re-Surfacing, Report Sayslast_img read more

Five Star Pays Tribute to Women in Housing

first_img in Daily Dose, Government, Headlines, News Share Click here to view the September 2015 issue of MReport, featuring Sheila C. Bair. FDIC Chairman Sheila C. BairThe honorable Sheila C. Bair, chairman of the Federal Deposit Insurance Corp., wrapped up the panel of distinguished ladies with a reflection of her path to her current position and most recent position as President of Washington College. Of her position at the college she said, “It’s such a relief to have a gender neutral title.”Growing up in a family deeply rooted in positive moral and core values began her infatuation with helping people, leading her to major in philosophy and later, obtain a law degree.”If I look back on my career, I was mentored by more men than women, it just wasn’t many around in senior positions during this time,” Bair noted. “When I broke into the financial services industry, I quickly learned that it was heavily male-dominated and difficult to navigate.”She added, “Financial reform is needed in our industry, especially in investment banking. This is one place where we do not have enough women.” The third annual Women in Housing Leadership Forum at the Five Star Conference and Expo recognizes the strength and leadership of women across housing and mortgage servicing. This was the final event at the Five Star Conference. Three female trailblazers in graced the stage, each of them with important lessons learned as they have traveled down their path.The first speaker to take the stage, Kathleen Malone, SVP at Wells Fargo Home Mortgage discussed the importance of mentorship among women in this line of business.”As I think back, I appreciated the thought in knowing that someone was on my side, in my corner, and helping me achieve my goals,” Malone said.”Malone then shared a story of how her high-school volleyball coach encouraged her to go to the college of her choice after the counselor at the school told her that her test scores were too low to go any of the school she chose.”I was determined to get into one of those schools, I never would have made it where I am today,” she added. “Something small can be huge. Encourage and challenge others to think through and take advantage of thoseopportunities where they can make a huge difference in someone’s day and career.””Financial reform is needed in our industry, especially in investment banking. This is one place where we do not have enough women.”President & CEO, Ebby Halliday Real Estate, Inc., Mary Frances Burleson, began her speech with a tribute to the late Ebby Halliday, founder of the company.Mary Frances began her career as a secretary before discovering the new world of Ebby Halliday, where a small group of women were successfully selling homes.She added, “After seeing Ebby, I realized that the world is your oyster, anything was possible. I was in the right place at the right time. What a great experience, I would not want to do anything else.”Mary Frances also advised other women in the industry to make sure that they are in the career they really want.”Make sure you enjoy and like it. Find a mentor, serve the clients, serve the community, and serve the industry.” She then explained why women are usually quiet in professional settings and not bold enough to request the results they want.”Women tend to shy away from self advocacy, and I’m speaking from observation and personal experience,” Madison explained. “Men do better by focusing on what they do well. We women tend to focus on perfection. This holds us back.”She concluded with, “Women of my generation think we had it hard, and I agree. So we should make it easier for women in up-and-coming generations.” September 18, 2015 494 Views center_img Although women holding key leadership positions in the housing industry is a rarity, there are a number of female trailblazers that have established a name for themselves in a male-dominated market. Five Star Pays Tribute to Women in Housing Kathryn Madison, CEO, HSBC took a more personal and feminine approach to her speech. She talked about the female gender being more emotional and emphatic in the industry and how this can be advantageous.”By showing emotion, women can connect one on one at a more personal level, and that can drive a high performance team,” Madison said. 2015 Five Star Conference and Expo Federal Deposit Insurance Corporation Women in Housing Leadership Forum 2015-09-18 Staff Writer Click here to view the August 2015 Women in Housing issue of MReport.last_img read more

Buyer Behavior—Emotional Factors Drive Purchase Decisions

first_img Bank of America First-Time Homebuyer Home Investment Property 2016-04-06 Scott_Morgan in Daily Dose, Data, Featured, News, Origination Bank of America’s first-ever look at homebuying trends has found that more buyers want a home more than they want an investment in property.According to BOA’s inaugural Homebuyer Insights Report (HIR), released Wednesday, three quarters of first-time homebuyers want to skip buying a starter home in favor of a long-term, single-family homes. That same 75 percent was also motivated by “emotional factors,” meaning more first-time buyers are seeing the purchase of property as homes, not investments and portfolio pieces.However, about two-thirds of first-time buyers said they are also motivated by the financial advantages of owning a home, and 59 percent said they are aware enough of the importance of a downpayment that they are saving specifically for one. Nine of 10  homebuyers consider saving for or paying off a home as important as saving for retirement, the report found.Millennials, however, did say they still expect some help getting that first home. According to the HIR, 66 percent of first-time millennial buyers said they expect some type of help, financial or otherwise, from their parents when buying.Also when it comes to money, good mortgage rates top the list of reasons first-time buyers want to work with a mortgage provider. However, the same percentage of buyers (59) said that trustworthiness was just as important, trumping the wish to work with providers who have buyers’ best interest at heart.Perhaps more surprising is the growing interest in settling into the suburbs. Despite migration trends toward cities and urban-style downtowns, particularly among millennials, over the past few years, the HIR shows that nearly 60 percent of first-time buyers want out of the cities and into the suburbs. And for those buyers, the biggest motivators are cost (82 percent) and the wish to live in a good neighborhood (71 percent).According to the HIR, three-quarters of first-time buyers said they want a single-family home, while 11 percent said they would like to purchase a townhome. A mere 6 percent are interested in condos.“Every day, we talk to clients who are motivated to purchase a home for many reasons, including the pride of ownership and desire to establish roots in a community,” said D. Steve Boland, a consumer lending executive for Bank of America. “Today’s aspiring homebuyers want to be selective and believe they should wait until they can afford to buy a home they’ll live in for years to come. They’re also realistic about the need to save for a down payment.” April 6, 2016 671 Views center_img Buyer Behavior—Emotional Factors Drive Purchase Decisions Sharelast_img read more

Is the Fed Ready to Make a Move

first_imgIs the Fed Ready to Make a Move? November 23, 2016 624 Views in Daily Dose, Data, Featured, News Federal Funds Target Rate Federal Reserve FOMC 2016-11-23 Seth Welborncenter_img Share Members of the Federal Open Market Committee (FOMC), the policymaking arm of the Federal Reserve, was not clear in the November meeting minutes released Wednesday about their plans for raising the federal funds target rate but agreed that the case for a rate hike continues to strengthen. Will they make the move in their December meeting?The Fed originally intended multiple rate hikes in 2016 after last December’s historical raising of the rates by 25 basis points, the first such increase in nearly a decade. But the central bank has yet to make a move this year.“The desire to make progress on monetary policy normalization has been impeded by a series of unrelated surprises over the course of the year, heightening uncertainty, to which the committee has responded with caution, postponing a rate increase,” said Robert Denk, AVP for Forecasting and Analysis with the National Association of Home Builders. “The surprise between the November and December meetings has been the outcome of the presidential election.”December’s Employment Summary from the Bureau of Labor Statistics, which will be published on December 2, may determine whether or not the Fed raises rates in the December 14 FOMC meeting. The Fed noted in its November meeting minutes that “real gross domestic product (GDP) expanded at a faster pace in the third quarter than in the first half of the year and that labor market conditions continued to strengthen in recent months.”“While committee members remain divided in several important aspects, the consensus does seem to favor a quarter-point rate hike next month,” said Curt Long, Chief Economist with the National Association of Federal Credit Unions. “Looking ahead to 2017, disagreements over how close the economy is to full employment and whether it is prudent to allow inflation to run above target could shape how firmly the committee can hold to its promise to tighten its monetary stance gradually.”Click here to view the Fed’s minutes from the November meeting.last_img read more

Study Says Inventory Decline Resulted in Fewer Offers

first_img Growth Home Tours Housing Demand Housing Market Inventory Listings New Home Listings Offers Redfin 2018-01-30 Radhika Ojha Study Says: Inventory Decline Resulted in Fewer Offers Fewer listings and therefore fewer offers marked the end of 2017 for the housing market according to data on housing demand from online real estate brokers, Redfin that was released on Tuesday. The Redfin Housing Demand Index is based on data from Redfin customers requesting home tours and writing offers and is adjusted for Redfin’s market share growth. It covers data from 15 major metro areas across the U.S. The data indicated that though the index remained flat on a month-over-month basis, year over year a growth of 8.4 percent over December 2016. It also indicated that the number of buyers requesting tours went up 16.7 percent while the number of buyers making offers slid 5.9 percent.On a month-on-month basis, the index remained nearly flat falling 0.6 percent to 127.6 in December, compared with 128.3 in November 2017. The number of buyers requesting home tours fell by 3.4 percent during the month, while the numbers making offers fell 1.8 percent from November 2017.December also marked the 31st consecutive month of falling supply according to the report, one of the reasons for the drop in offer activity. Inventory fell 20 percent year-over-year in December, marking the largest inventory decline since 2014, when Redfin first began tracking the 15 markets on this index.“Buyer demand is still strong but wilted a bit in the face of low inventory,” said Nela Richardson Chief Economist at Redfin. “The housing market ended 2017 with 170,000 fewer listings than it had a year earlier, which means there were fewer homes for buyers to tour and make offers on. For the fourth consecutive year, inventory will be the major factor shaping the housing market in 2018.” January 30, 2018 575 Views center_img in Daily Dose, Data, Featured, News Sharelast_img read more

Homebuyer Demand for Air Conditioning Heats Up

first_img AC Home Home Features Home Prices Homebuyers House HOUSING Zillow 2018-07-12 Alison Rich Share While a primo patio or dolled-up deck is a standard selling point, the most chill feature of all just may be a central AC, according to a new Zillow analysis. The homebuyer is willing to shell out 2.5 percent more for a dwelling equipped with a central air-conditioning unit—a premium that will set them back a cool $5,500 for the typical U.S. abode—the 2017 Zillow Group Consumer Housing Trends Report says. That premium runs highest in San Antonio, where AC-outfitted houses sold for 5.8 percent more than their non-cooled counterparts, the report states. Cincinnati stands close behind, with a 5.7 percent premium, while climate-controlled residences in Detroit, Indianapolis, and Las Vegas sold for a 5 percent premium.Sixty-two percent of analyzed homebuyers listed air conditioning as a requisite feature, while forty-eight percent considered a “private outdoor space” like the aforementioned patio or deck as a must-have amenity, the study says.From coast to coast, 66.1 percent of homes that sold in the past year count air conditioning among their components. In markets with some of the steamiest climates, an AC unit was in every home that sold over the past year, Zillow reports. It was in 99.1 percent of sold homes in Las Vegas and 97.9 percent in Phoenix, it notes.Sizzling demand aside, there are times when a homebuyer don’t sweat the lack of an AC system, Zillow notes.“Individual design preferences or decorating styles might deter buyers from certain homes, but there is a strong consensus in favor of air conditioning, although, in the nation’s fastest-moving markets, AC may weigh relatively low for buyers eager to find any home they can,” said Aaron Terrazas, Senior Economist at Zillow. “In historically more temperate climates, some homes—especially older ones—aren’t as likely to have air conditioning. But in places where temperatures regularly reach triple digits, it’s hard to find a home without air conditioning.”Also worth mentioning, renters also place a slightly heftier premium on AC, Zillow found. The typical AC-equipped rental featured on Zillow’s website in the last year went for 2.8 percent more than a rental in the same market sans AC. That shakes out to about $40 more per month, the company says. The New York, Las Vegas, and Phoenix metros each command the highest rents for air conditioning, it notes. July 12, 2018 617 Views center_img in Daily Dose, Data, Featured, News Homebuyer Demand for Air Conditioning Heats Uplast_img read more

FICO and Equifax Announce Tech Partnership

first_imgFICO and Equifax Announce Tech Partnership Share March 29, 2019 750 Views in Headlines, News, Technologycenter_img Equifax, the Atlanta, Georgia-headquartered global data, analytics, and technology company has announced a strategic partnership with FICO, a California based predictive analytics and data science company.Through this partnership, FICO and Equifax are introducing the Data Decisions Cloud, an end-to-end data and analytics suite that addresses key needs across risk, marketing, and fraud to enable financial institutions to meet the needs of consumers faster and more precisely.The platform integrates the Equifax Ignite platform differentiated data and analytic management with FICO’s cloud applications and the FICO Decision Management Suite (DMS), a digital decisioning platform.The companies said that this broad strategic alignment would enable organizations to easily explore differentiated data, uncover deep new insights, build highly-predictive models, and rapidly deploy decisions into production systems across the customer lifecycle. Financial institutions will benefit from an increased pace of innovation for data and decisioning, supported by incredible industry expertise and explainable artificial intelligence (AI), Equifax and FICO said in a joint statement.“We are energized about this broad partnership between Equifax and FICO. Two industry leaders are joining forces to help financial institutions better meet the needs of consumers and improve business agility,” said Mark W. Begor, CEO of Equifax. “Our partnership will seamlessly integrate Equifax’s differentiated data assets and Ignite platform with FICO’s market-leading cloud based decisioning software and applications.”The strategic partnership is focused on a connected, end-to-end development and decisioning management platform that allows customers to quickly explore, develop, test, and deploy powerful insights into production systems across the organization.“Our common mission is to empower financial institutions to leverage data-driven decisioning in all their customer interactions,” said William J. Lansing, CEO of FICO. “With this strategic partnership, FICO and Equifax will help organizations operationalize the best data with unparalleled predictive analytics and applied AI, and do so in a streamlined and cost-effective way.” Credit Scores Equifax FICO Financial Institutions mortgage Servicing 2019-03-29 Radhika Ojhalast_img read more

The APT Travel Group is polishing the fine details

first_imgThe APT Travel Group is polishing the fine details for its 90 Years of Unforgettable Gala Event, to be held at the Regent Plaza Ballroom in Melbourne on Friday night as part of the company’s 90th anniversary celebrations. With almost 300 VIP agents and industry partners on the guest list, the sales team has been busy making sure everything is perfect for the event, including the all-important awards ceremony that recognises top performing agents.Commercial manager retail Susan Haberle said the gala would recognise and reward the group’s Diamond and Platinum agents and celebrate its 1927 origins in style.“The Gala is APT Travel Group’s way of saying thank you to the agents and industry partners who have contributed to the success of our company over the years,” she said.The gala is one of several activities planned for 2017 to mark 90 years from operating a bus line in suburban Melbourne to running river cruises on the Danube and beyond. Image: Channelling the year 1927 ahead of the APT Gala Event are APT Travel Group team members (L-R):  Retail communications coordinator Claire Freeman; commercial manager retail Susan Haberle; group sales coordinator Kirra Gridley; business development coordinator Chris Hodges; executive general manager global marketing & sales Debra Fox; business development coordinator Lani Harvey; and events coordinator Mel Andrews APT Travel Grouplast_img read more

Its been a long six years of court trials and app

first_imgIt’s been a long six years of court trials and appeals but yesterday Flight Centre’s battle with the Australian Competition and Consumer Competition (ACCC), who alleged Flight Centre had attempted to co-opt three international airlines – Singapore, Malaysia and Emirates – in a price fixing arrangement between 2005 and 2009, came to a conclusion.Flight Centre has now been ordered to pay $12.5 million in fines. Flight Centrelast_img

The new 2019 Europe and Britain collection from In

first_imgThe new 2019 Europe and Britain collection from Insight Vacations features 96 unforgettable journeys, including three brand new trips to Scandinavia, Malta and Greece, and enhanced itineraries for Joran, Isreal and Malta.The Jordan Experience now offers a meaningful visit to the Iraq Al-Amir Women’s Cooperative, an Insight Cares and TreadRight project; Israel Discovery includes a new Dine-at-Home lunch experience; and Easy Pace Malta has added memorable visits to Valletta and Mdina. Insight Vacations has also created more selling opportunities for travel agents, which are only available to book for 2019 including commemorating the 75th Anniversary of the World War II Normandy D-Day landings. Guests can explore these significant historical sites by booking either the Normandy, Brittany & the Loire Valley or French Heritage guided journeys.“As the Europe Specialists for the past 40 years, we highly value our loyal travel agent partners. Our goal is to help make 2019 their best booking year ever with our ‘Insight Difference’ by offering clients incredible activities, meaningful interactions and the best value across our 96 European premium guided journeys,” said Lorraine Sharp, Managing Director Insight Vacations. “We have already seen a significant increase in advanced 2019 bookings and we anticipate client demand by highlighting special times to visit certain destinations with festivals such as the Venice Carnival, Bastille Day, Oktoberfest, Edinburgh Tattoo and Christmas Markets.”*To help travel agents close more sales effectively and for a seamless booking experience, Insight Vacations has created one singular opportunity for a 10% savings with its popular Early Payment Discount for clients who book and pay in full by January 31st, 2019.”Insight Vacations advises agents to book as early as possible for the largest choice of trips and available departure dates. As a further booking incentive for clients, past guests can receive an additional 5% savings until October 31st, 2018. agentsBritainBrochuresEuropeInsight Vacationsprogramslast_img read more

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first_img 0 Comments   Share   The 5: Takeaways from the Coyotes’ introduction of Alex Meruelo Top Stories Derrick Hall satisfied with D-backs’ buying and selling Warner added that the Cardinals offensive tackles — D’Anthony Batiste and Bobby Massie — have combined to start 14 NFL games, further showing how little experience the offensive side of the ball features.“It’s tough to get guys to come into this league and excel having not seen very much, having not been in crazy environments like last Thursday in St. Louis on the big stage,” he said.Arizona is averaging just 18.8 points per game and picking up 273.2 yards per contest. The quarterbacks have been sacked a league-high 23 times, and the Cardinals have the third-lowest rushing total in the NFL, ahead of only Dallas and Oakland, each of whom were off this week. center_img Former Cardinals kicker Phil Dawson retires Former Arizona Cardinals quarterback and current NFL Network analyst Kurt Warner thinks the Cardinals offense is lacking the one thing the coaches can’t help them gain: experience.So, before fans go and look at Cardinals offensive line coach Russ Grimm as the responsible party for the team’s blocking woes, Warner wants people to realize he just doesn’t have much to work with at the moment.“You have to look at the big picture,” Warner told Arizona Sports 620’s Doug and Wolf Monday. “Take Fitz out of the mix, and you look at the skill positions starting for this team offensively, and their average number of starts is 12 starts.” Grace expects Greinke trade to have emotional impactlast_img read more

Joe Huizenga Both these teams have had devastatin

first_imgJoe HuizengaBoth these teams have had devastating injuries this year. Ryan Lindley’s had the bulk of two games as starting QB under center now…they haven’t been pretty but I just have a hunch it finally comes together a bit more this week for the Cardinals.Basically, the Jets are a bigger mess…smile Cardinal fans, smile.Final Score: Cardinals 27, Jets 26 Top Stories John GambadoroDo they have to play? Can’t take the Cardinals on the road and bringing with them a pathetic 7-game losing streak, even against an inept Jets team. New York, embarrassed by New England on Thanksgiving Day, got a few extra days to get healthy and prepare for Arizona and that should be enough to squeak out a victory. Arizona will play hard; they haven’t quit on Ken Whisenhunt yet, but the lack of a quarterback is just killing them. I look for Lindley to improve some and a heavy dose of Beanie Wells. But this game comes down to who makes more mistakes not who makes more big plays, and that unfortunately is the Cardinals.Final Score: Jets 20, Cardinals 17 Katy HartleySo Lindley is starting and the Cards have lost their center… Looks to be another underwhelming performance by the offense… The defense might be able to keep it close, but typically the Cards struggle on the East coast – I think Jets have the edge with home field advantage.Final Score: Jets 24, Cardinals 17 0 Comments   Share   Dave BurnsTwo teams who win about as often as I hit the gym meet up on Sunday. Hard to pick a winner in this bunch. The Jets’ issues have been magnified because they’re the Jets, but they have the better QB, they’re at home, it’s a long trip for a Cardinals team that is riding a two month losing streak, and the Jets have the benefit of extra time to prepare. As bad as they are, there are more reasons to pick the Jets than the Cards.Final Score: Jets 20, Cardinals 17 The 5: Takeaways from the Coyotes’ introduction of Alex Meruelo Adam GreenCardinals/Jets is the type of matchup dreams are made of.Horrible, horrible dreams.The Jets might be the only team in the NFL with a worse quarterback situation than the Cardinals, though any difference is pretty negligible. Mark Sanchez isn’t great, but he has some ability — we can’t for sure say the same for Ryan Lindley.This game will not be pretty.Final Score: Jets 20, Cardinals 13 Derrick Hall satisfied with D-backs’ buying and selling Carter NackeSunday is going to be ugly. The Jets have been struggling almost as bad as the Cardinals, and Sunday is going to be a toss-up. However, I’m predicting the upset. Cards D is going to come up big and a last-second Feely FG will seal the.Final Score: Cardinals 16, Jets 13 The Arizona Cardinals are 4-7. The New York Jets are 4-7.Someone has to win — or, rather, someone has to not-lose. Can the Cardinals end their losing streak in the Big Apple? The experts from ArizonaSports620 tell you what they think.Share your own prediction with a comment. Former Cardinals kicker Phil Dawson retires Vince MarottaThey’re still playing this game? OK, just kidding. Two 4-7 teams headed in the wrong direction, and there’s some speculation that the losing coach will also lose their job. Unlike the Jets, the Cardinals have been mostly competitive during their seven-game losing streak. Rex Ryan’s team has been blown out by an average of 24 points in their last three losses — including the Thanksgiving night debacle at the hands of the Patriots. Seriously, I laughed about Mark Sanchez’s butt sack and fumble for about 30 solid minutes. But going on the road to the East coast to play an early game is never easy, especially when you’re facing a team that’s a little more rested. If the Jets can overcome their heavy hearts in the wake of Fireman Ed stepping down as the most annoying fan, I mean, the unofficial team mascot, they’ll win.Final Score: Jets 20, Cardinals 17 James MelloThe Cardinals are better in every phase of the game at this point in the season. There are very few teams the Cardinals could say that about offensively, but the Jets are one of them. Offensively the Cards still have more talent because of a lack of receiving threats for the Jets. The Cardinals’ main goal offensively will be to just not lose the game. The defense of the Cards will be able to create problems early and often against the Jets. If they were able to intercept Matt Ryan five times, Mark Sanchez should be no issue. Arizona is better on special teams as well, which was shown by the consistent blunders on Thanksgiving by the Jets against New England. Low scoring game but Arizona wins.Final Score: Cardinals 14, Jets 10 Charlie FeinermanFinally, the Cardinals will end the losing streak. Ryan Lindley has a big game, showing his full potential with at least 250 yards, 3 touchdown passes and one interception. The Jets (unless it becomes Tebow Time) will gain a total of 150 yards against the Cardinals defense. Patrick Peterson finally get a punt return touchdown.Final Score: Cardinals 24, Jets 3 Grace expects Greinke trade to have emotional impact Dave DulbergThe Jets are 2-4 at home this season, with their four losses coming by an average of 22.7 points per game. The Cardinals are the first NFL team in history to a season 4-0 only to lose their next seven games. The scheduling gods have made it so that one of those awful statistics has to come to a screeching halt on Sunday. Unfortunately for Cardinals fans, brace yourself for loss No. 8. When Mark Sanchez is the more competent starting quarterback, you know you’re in for a long day. Ryan Lindley won’t throw four INTs this week, but he’ll turn the ball over just enough to keep Arizona from competing late.Final Score: Jets 24, Cardinals 14last_img read more

The Arizona Cardinals are going to be seeing plent

first_img The Arizona Cardinals are going to be seeing plenty of new faces in their division this year, including the No. 1 overall pick and Los Angeles Rams quarterback Jared Goff.To keep you up to date, here are the NFC West draft results from the first round. Below, check out what the four teams in the division did in the second and third rounds of the 2016 NFL Draft on Friday night. Seattle Seahawks – Jarran Reed (49th)The Alabama defensive tackle didn’t wow on the stat sheets with 56 tackles, 4.5 for loss, and one sack last season, but he was plenty productive on the interior of the Crimson Tide’s line, eating up gaps in the run game while playing with several other talented players. Seattle gave up a fourth-round pick to the Chicago Bears to move up for this second-round choice. Reed could be a replacement candidate for the departed Brandon Mebane, who is now with the San Diego Chargers. Comments   Share    San Francisco 49ers – Will Redmond (68th overall)The cornerback only started seven games for Mississippi State as a senior before tearing his ACL in October. That said, his overall skills and ability to fit in any scheme stand out. He could end up being a longer-term project for the 49ers. Seattle Seahawks – C.J. Prosise (90th)Seattle continued to prepare for a post-Marshawn Lynch world by drafting the Notre Dame running back late in the third round. Prosise only started a full season, rushing for 1,032 yards on a 6.6-per carry average. Prosise also had 306 receiving yards for the Irish. While his pass-protection skills need fine-tuning, he could vie for playing time with Thomas Rawls — he is coming off ankle surgery — and Christine Michael the only Seahawks backs returning with NFL experience.  Arizona Cardinals – Brandon Williams (92nd overall)The Cardinals went after Williams’ 4.37-second speed in the 40-yard dash. The Texas A&M defensive back is still learning the position after transitioning to the defensive side last year. Previously, he played running back. Williams’ size and athleticism give Arizona a project but one with a full college season of solid defense under his belt. Former Cardinals kicker Phil Dawson retires  Seattle Seahawks – Nick Vannett (94th)Cardinals fans can attest to the Seahawks’ tight end success over the last few years. Arizona, specifically, has been on the losing end of those matchups a couple of times of late and that could continue if the 6-foot-6, 257-pound Ohio State product pans out. He joins a deep tight end group led by Jimmy Graham, who had a disappointing start to his Seattle career that was capped by a season-ending knee injury. Seattle Seahawks – Rees Odhiambo (97th)Odhiambo played tackle at Boise State but will play guard for the Seahawks, who closed their busy third round with yet another offensive player. Odhiambo, from Kenya, could challenge for a starting spot to protect quarterback Russell Wilson. – / 23 Top Stories center_img Grace expects Greinke trade to have emotional impact The 5: Takeaways from the Coyotes’ introduction of Alex Meruelo Alabama’s Jarran Reed celebrates after being selected by the Seattle Seahawks as the 49th pick in the second round of the 2016 NFL football draft, Friday, April 29, 2016, in Chicago. (AP Photo/Charles Rex Arbogast) Derrick Hall satisfied with D-backs’ buying and sellinglast_img read more

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first_img 2 Comments   Share   Former NFL quarterback Kurt Warner points to the sky at the end of his speech during inductions at the Pro Football Hall of Fame on Saturday, Aug. 5, 2017, in Canton, Ohio. (AP Photo/David Richard) Grace expects Greinke trade to have emotional impact Former Cardinals kicker Phil Dawson retires Derrick Hall satisfied with D-backs’ buying and selling Full page ad from @AZCardinals in today’s Arizona Republic pic.twitter.com/jZHZQWa8M4— Mark Dalton (@CardsMarkD) August 6, 2017Before listing the rest of the former Cardinals who have been inducted into the Pro Football Hall of Fame, the ad reads:center_img The 5: Takeaways from the Coyotes’ introduction of Alex Meruelo Officially, Kurt Warner is in the Pro Football Hall of Fame.The quarterback who wore the No. 13 on the back of his jersey became the 13th Cardinal to make it to Canton, Ohio, in franchise history, and the team recognized him Sunday by buying a full-page ad in The Arizona Republic to congratulate Warner for his accomplishments. “Today, the Red Sea is overflowing with pride.The Professional Football Hall of Fame is home to the names of many Cardinals greats. We are proud to add one more to the class of 2017.The one and only Kurt Warner.Kurt, we thank you for your inspiration, leadership and ability to make us all jump out of our seats.”In the Hall of Fame, Warner joins Cardinals Charles W. Bidwill (1933-1947), Jimmy Conzelman (1940-42, 1946-48), Dan Dierdorf (1971-83), John Driscoll (1920-25), Dick Lane (1954-59), Ollie Matson (1952, 1954-58), Ernie Nevers (1929-31), Jackie Smith (1963-77), Charley Trippi (1947-55), Roger Wehrli (1969-82), Aeneas Williams (1991-2000) and Larry Wilson (1960-72). – / 70 Top Stories last_img read more

The 5 Takeaways from the Coyotes introduction of

first_img The 5: Takeaways from the Coyotes’ introduction of Alex Meruelo Atlanta Falcons special teams coordinator Keith Armstrong, left, confers with head coach Dan Quinn before an NFL football game against the Carolina Panthers in Charlotte, N.C., Saturday, Dec. 24, 2016. The Falcons won 33-16. (AP photo/Bob Leverone) Former Cardinals kicker Phil Dawson retires 4 Comments   Share   Top Stories He joined the Falcons as a safeties coach, holding that position from 1994-95 before becoming secondary coach in 1996. From 1997-2000, he was the Chicago Bears’ special teams coach and held the same position with the Miami Dolphins from 2001-07 before returning to Atlanta with the same duties in 2008.The news of Armstrong meeting with the Cardinals comes after Pittsburgh Steelers offensive line coach Mike Munchak turned down the chance to interview with Arizona a second time. Munchak said the timing for his family was not appropriate.Armstrong joins Patriots linebackers coach Brian Flores and potentially Eagles quarterbacks coach John DeFilippo and Panthers defensive coordinator Steve Wilks. All were among the nine candidates the Cardinals reportedly interviewed in their coaching search. Derrick Hall satisfied with D-backs’ buying and selling As the pool of Arizona Cardinals head coaching candidates grows more shallow, the team will continue setting up a second round of interviews.The first known scheduled meeting is with Atlanta Falcons special teams coordinator Keith Armstrong, who NFL Network’s Ian Rapoport reports will visit Arizona on Friday.Armstrong, 54, played as a defensive back for Temple from 1983-86 under recently-retired Cardinals coach Bruce Arians. He worked under Arians as a grad assistant in 1987 before taking on assistant jobs of varying capacities at Miami (1988), Akron (1989), Oklahoma State (1990-92) and Notre Dame (1993). Grace expects Greinke trade to have emotional impactlast_img read more

Go back to the enewsletter Dubaibased luxury p

first_imgGo back to the e-newsletter >Dubai-based luxury property developer and holding company Seven Tides has appointed the general manager and four senior executive committee members for its latest five-star hospitality venture, Dukes Dubai hotel and hotel apartment project.General manager, Mete Atakuman, will head up the team and brings more than 20 years’ industry experience to the role with emphasis on openings and acquisition.An Australian citizen, Atakuman, has vast experience of Dubai-based brands, having previously worked with the Jumeirah Group to oversee the takeover of the Jumeirah Bodrum Palace, Turkey as well as managing several high profile pre-opening projects in China and Azerbaijan for the international luxury hotel chain.“Mete has a proven operational and commercial track record when it comes to spearheading new hotel projects, and his experience of conveying luxury brand concepts will be instrumental to our success as we introduce this uniquely British brand to an expectant market in the region,” said Abdulla Bin Sulayem, chief executive, Seven Tides, developer of DUKES Dubai.Atakuman will lead a team which includes Laetitia Pardo who joins Dukes Dubai as director of sales and marketing.A French national with hospitality industry experience on two continents, she will play a pivotal role in positioning Dukes in the region as well as ensuring a healthy market mix for the luxury property’s leisure, business and MICE segments.Pardo has 17 years experience working for renowned hotel groups such as Atlantis the Palm, Hilton International and Sofitel, as well as iconic properties including The Savoy in London.Former French naval officer, Richard Mazeau, takes on responsibility for Dukes Dubai’s recruitment strategy as the new director of human resources.Previous experience includes Anantara Doha, where he oversaw recruitment from pre-opening, the opening of the Ritz-Carlton Abu Dhabi, as well as managing HR and training for One&Only Resorts, Dubai.The fourth new member of the executive team, director of engineering, Avnish Kumar, has been at the sharp end of the industry in the region for a decade as a pre-opening specialist, working with TIME Hotels, Mövenpick and The Address Hotels among others.Rounding out the appointments list is Navin Shah, the hotel’s director of finance, a qualified chartered accountant with over 15 years’ experience.“The success of Dukes Dubai in the UAE is contingent upon its leadership team and their ability to position the brand as a market leader and deliver its distinctly unique character in today’s extremely competitive marketplace,” added Bin Sulayem.Centrally located on the trunk of Palm Jumeirah, just 10 minutes’ drive from Dubai Marina and Sheikh Zayed Road, and only 45 minutes from Dubai International Airport, DUKES Dubai hotel and hotel apartments is set to add a distinctly British flavour to the city’s luxury hospitality offering when it opens in the first quarter of 2016.“With this launch we are bringing quintessential British charm and style to the UAE and blending it with cosmopolitan luxury to create a unique residence and hotel situated in the heart of Dubai’s most desirable island community, Palm Jumeirah,” said Abdulla bin Sulayem, chief executive, Seven Tides.The 273-room hotel and 227 hotel apartments will offer world-class leisure, conference and entertainment facilities including a private beach, indoor pool, outdoor infinity pool and state-of-the-art gym, along with five food and beverage outlets.Go back to the e-newsletter >last_img read more

The Pullman brand has announced plans to transform

first_imgThe Pullman brand has announced plans to transform the ground floor of one of Melbourne’s hotels, Pullman Melbourne On The Park, with a $6million investment.The 419-room hotel’s ground floor interior spaces – reception, arrival area, bar and restaurant – will be completely transformed, whilst respecting the hotel’s heritage, under the direction of national design practice, Rothelowman, who have been appointed to manage the project.The redevelopment will connect the external streetscape with the internal lobby, restaurant and bar with a radically-redesigned series of interconnected spaces, positioning the hotel design in line with the Pullman Hotels & Resorts global cosmopolitan brand.Set to undergo the greatest transformation is the restaurant and bar which is soon to become a playground of culinary delight, focused around local produce and the visual theatre of food preparation. Large open-plan spaces and semi-private dining room areas will be incorporated into the new restaurant concept, all designed around creating an interactive environment, featuring a large pizza oven, raw bar section for fresh seafood and cured items, a churned ice-creamery and dessert bar.Featured quite prominently in the design is an oversized new bar with a central position, designed for bar staff and mixologists to create and animate cocktail making. The bar will also serve craft beers and a selection of wines, as well as all-day dining options focused around shared dishes. Set to be an entity in its own right, the bar will feature a large double sided fireplace near the entrance to welcome hotel guests and external patrons alike, acting as a conduit, linking to the restaurant, lobby and hotel.Inspired by the hotel’s outlook over Fitzroy Gardens, the colours and textures will be reflected in treatments throughout the new ground floor design, with patterns set against a backdrop of chevron timber wall panelling, retaining the formality of an upscale executive hotel with a relaxed, sophisticated ambience. Erkin Aytekin, general manager at Pullman Melbourne On The Park said, “This iconic hotel has long held a special place in the hearts of Melbournians, and our new welcoming sophisticated ground floor spaces are set to impress our loyal returning guests and attract even greater volumes of global nomads, captivated by Pullman hotels.”“Key to Rothelowman’s innovative design is the ability for the ground floor to flex from cosy intimate spaces to larger open plan spaces to accommodate high demand periods associated with the hotel’s proximity to Melbourne’s main sports and entertainment precinct – just a stone’s throw from the iconic Melbourne Cricket Ground, Rod Laver Arena, Hisense Arena, Olympic Park and AAMI Park.“Once completed, the hotel will be brought into line with the international direction of the Pullman brand with its state-of-the-art design and finishes, whilst respecting the hotel’s rich heritage,” concluded Erkin.last_img read more