Interest Rate Roundup

Tuesday, June 16, 2009

Securitization changes coming down the pike

We won't get the Obama administration's full "blueprint" on financial regulatory reform until tomorrow. But some elements have been leaking out. Here is how the securitization market might be affected, according to a story in the Washington Post:

"Lenders would be required to retain at least 5 percent of the risk of losses on each package of loan pieces, known as an asset-backed security.

"The employees and contractors who originate loans would be paid gradually, and they could get less if borrowers started to default.

"The proposal also takes aim at ratings agencies such as Moody's and Standard and Poor's, which investors rely upon to evaluate the quality of asset-backed securities. Those agencies would be required to make clear to investors that the securities are riskier than traditional investments such as corporate bonds.

"These changes address the market at the heart of the financial crisis, but they make up only a small piece of the administration's blueprint. The plan would give the Federal Reserve new powers to restrict the risks taken by large financial firms. It would create a new authority to dismantle firms that fall into trouble and a separate agency to protect consumers of financial products such as mortgages and credit cards."


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