MBA’s Mortgage Forecast for 2017

“Our current forecast for mortgage origination volume is ...about $1.56 trillion in 2017, ...down from nearly $1.9 trillion in 2016,” said MBA’s Lynn Fisher. “We expect that to flatten out a little bit in 2018 and come in at about $1.58 trillion.”

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Posted: February 1st, 2017 | Permalink

The CFPB’s Independent Audit of Selected Operations and Budget

Posted: January 30th, 2017 | Permalink

An Analysis of CBO’s Budget and Economic Outlook

“Trillion-dollar deficits will return by Fiscal Year (FY) 2023, with deficits growing from $587 billion (3.2 percent of GDP) in 2016 to $1.4 trillion (5.0 percent of GDP) by 2027.”


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Posted: January 24th, 2017 | Permalink

Trump Administration Officially Reverses the FHA Premium Cut Administration

An hour after taking the oath of office, President Donald Trump issued Mortgagee Letter 2017-07, which indefinitely suspends a scheduled 25-basis point reduction in FHA’s annual premium. On January 9, HUD Secretary Julian Castro announced the premium cut that was scheduled to go into effect on January 27. “Playing politics with the FHA through cynical, surprise 11th hour rule changes is irresponsible and endangers the integrity and success of the FHA,” said House Financial Services Chairman Jeb Hensarling (R-TX)

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Posted: January 23rd, 2017 | Permalink

25 Startups Transforming The Mortgage Industry

CB Insights wrote:

To better understand the startups in the nascent but growing mortgage tech space, we used the CB Insights database to identify 25 startups transforming the mortgage industry. Companies in our mortgage tech market map span workflow tools that help process loans faster, marketplace lenders, direct-to-consumer digital lenders, analytics tools on loan performance and credit scoring, mortgage brokers, and auction sites.

Insert mortgage tech market map:

Mortgage Processing/Workflow Software: Companies here enable lenders to improve their workflow by helping them organize and track documents in the mortgage process. The most well-funded company in the category is Blend Labs which has raised roughly $42.5M in disclosed funding from investors like Lightspeed Venture Partners, 8VC, and Founders Fund, among others.

Marketplace Lending: The startups in this category include lending unicorn SoFi, which began as a student loan-focused marketplace but has since expanded to mortgages. SoFi has raised more than $1.6B in disclosed funding from investors like SoftBank Group and Renren Lianhe Holdings, among many others.

Digital Lenders: Companies include Better Mortgage which acts as a direct lender to consumers looking to access mortgage loans. Better Mortgage has raised roughly $30M in funding from investors like IA Ventures and Goldman Sachs, among others.

Digital Mortgage Broker: The category is comprised of companies that connect consumers to the best mortgage possible by assessing various characteristics of the consumer. The digital brokers are able to surface the loans by connecting with a variety of lenders. Habito, which raised roughly $2.2M in funding from Mosaic Ventures and Yuri Milner, is one of the six companies in the category.

Analytics: The section includes companies that provide loan performance analytics as well as credit scoring tools. LoanLogics is one of the companies in the category and raised $10M in growth equity from Blue Cloud Ventures and Volition Capital in March 2016.

Mortgage Auction Site: Mortgage auction site Loan Dolphin, a platform where banks and brokers compete to provide the best loan, has raised $920K in financing from H2 Ventures and Barry Lambert.


Mortgage Tech Company List




Select Investors


Digital Mortgage Broker

Mosaic Ventures and Yuri Milner


Digital Mortgage Broker

Entrepreneur First, LocalGlobe, Seedcamp, and Zoopla


Digital Mortgage Broker

Barclays Accelerator


Digital Mortgage Broker

Westpac Group


Digital Mortgage Broker

New Ground Ventures and Renren Lianhe Holdings


Digital Mortgage Broker

500 Startups, China Growth Capital, Rubicon Venture Capital, Structure Capital, and Winklevoss Capital

Blend Labs

Mortgage Processing/Workflow Software

8VC, Allen & Company, Andreessen Horowitz, Conversion Capital, Founders Fund, Initialized Capital, Lightspeed Venture Partners, Thrive Capital, and SV Angel


Mortgage Processing/Workflow Software

Barclays Accelerator


Mortgage Processing/Workflow Software

Dallas Capital Management and Upfront Ventures


Mortgage Processing/Workflow Software

Colchis Capital and Wells Fargo Startup Accelerator


Mortgage Processing/Workflow Software

10K Investments, Cantos Ventures, MATH Venture Partners, Sovereign’s Capital, Techstars Ventures, and Zelkova Ventures


Mortgage Processing/Workflow Software

Nordea Startup Accelerator


Mortgage Processing/Workflow Software

Socialatom Group


Mortgage Processing/Workflow Software

Alchemist Accelerator and Y Combinator

Digital Mortgage Lender

Parthenon Capital Partners


Digital Mortgage Lender

Atomico, Kunlun Worldwide, and Macquarie Group

Better Mortgage

Digital Mortgage Lender

1/0 Capital, Goldman Sachs, IA Ventures, KCK Group, Moderne Ventures, and Pine Brook


Digital Mortgage Lender

Redpoint Ventures, Slow Ventures, and Venrock


Digital Mortgage Lender

Bessemer Venture Partners, Cue Ball Capital, and MetaProp


Marketplace Lending

Cowboy Ventures, Foundation Capital, Renren Lianhe Holdings, and Ribbit Capital


Marketplace Lending

SoftBank Group and Renren Lianhe Holdings


Marketplace Lending

Omni Partners and Zoopla



Ben Franklin Technology Partners, Blue Cloud Ventures, Glenville Capital Partners, Mid-Atlantic Angel Group, Robin Hood Ventures, and Volition Capital

Credit Sesame


Camp One Ventures, Globespan Capital Partners, IA Capital Group, Inventus Capital Partners, Menlo Ventures, Plug and Play Ventures, and Syncora Alternative Investments

Loan Dolphin

Mortgage Auction

Barry Lambert and H2 Ventures



CB Insights Blog
January 6, 2016

Posted: January 15th, 2017 | Permalink

The State of America’s Energy Interests Is Strong

American Interest ’s Walter Russell Mead wrote: 

We’re only a week into the new year, and already it seems like we’re seeing more encouraging signs for the United States’ energy concerns. Let’s start with energy industry jobs, which according to the Bureau of Labor Statistics just posted their first monthly rise since September 2014. Reuters reports:

“Probably around August to September last year we started to see an increase in the amount of need out there from companies that are looking to hire and that continued through the holidays, which is rare,” said Jeff Bush, President of oil & gas recruiting firm CSI Recruiting in Texas. “I think we’re going to see a very busy year for hiring in oil and gas here in the United States.”

But the good news doesn’t stop there. According to the Energy Information Administration (EIA), the average American gas price last year hit its lowest level since 2004:

U.S. regular retail gasoline prices averaged $2.14 per gallon (gal) in 2016, 29 cents/gal (12%) less than in 2015 and the lowest annual average price since 2004. Lower crude oil prices in 2015 were the main cause of lower gasoline prices. In 9 of the 10 cities for which EIA collects weekly retail price data, gasoline prices did not exceed $3.00/gal.

The EIA correctly identifies bargain oil prices as the primary driver behind this drop in gasoline prices, but let’s go one step further and identify American shale production as the biggest reason why crude prices collapsed in the first place. Burgeoning U.S. production in recent years, driven largely by shale companies, has produced a global glut that in turn has helped bring down oil prices. This is having some very positive knock-on effects for American drivers, who are enjoying our country’s cheapest gas prices in more than a decade.

Of course, as nice as it’s been for consumers, the bearish crude market has had a negative effect on companies in the business of selling oil. Shale operations are relatively expensive, and as a result they’ve been particularly vulnerable to sliding oil prices over the past two and half years, falling from a high of more than 9.6 million barrels per day (bpd) in June of 2015 down below 8.5 million bpd in October 2016. But over the past three months, America’s oil output has been steadily rising, buoyed by an uptick in prices (a market rebound that comes courtesy of the fact that petrostates will be cutting their production in 2017). In fact, for the tenth week in a row, the number of American oil rigs in operation just increased. Reuters has more:

Drillers added four oil rigs in the week to Jan. 6, bringing the total count up to 529, the most since December 2015, energy services firm Baker Hughes Inc said on Friday. That was the first time the current rig count topped the year ago level since January 2015. A year ago, there were 516 active oil rigs. It was also drillers longest weekly streak of adding rigs since August 2011.

This week’s solid performance makes it 29 out of the past 32 weeks that the U.S. rig count has increased, and is yet more evidence of the increasingly solid footing our energy producers are finding themselves on in 2017. Whatever metric you want to use—whether its jobs, gas prices, or drilling rigs—America is on the precipice of another stellar shale-powered year in energy.


American Interest
Walter Russell Mead
January 6, 2016

Posted: January 9th, 2017 | Permalink