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Surviving the Streets of New York: Experiences of LGBTQ Youth, YMSM, and YWSW Engaged in Survival Sex (Research Report)
Meredith Dank, Jennifer Yahner, Kuniko Madden, Isela Banuelos, Lilly Yu, Andrea Ritchie, Mitchyll Mora, Brendan Conner

Based on interviews with 283 youth in New York City, this is the first study to focus on lesbian, gay, bisexual, transgender, and queer or questioning (LGBTQ) youth; young men who have sex with men (YMSM); and young women who have sex with women (YWSW) who get involved in the commercial sex market in order to meet basic survival needs, such as food or shelter. The report documents these youth’s experiences and characteristics to gain a better understanding of why they engage in survival sex, describes how the support networks and systems in their lives have both helped them and let them down, and makes recommendations for better meeting the needs of this vulnerable population.

Posted to Web: February 25, 2015Publication Date: February 25, 2015

Housing Finance At A Glance: A Monthly Chartbook: February 2015 (Fact Sheet / Data at a Glance)
Laurie Goodman, Ellen Seidman, Jim Parrott, Sheryl Pardo, Jun Zhu, Wei Li, Bing Bai, Karan Kaul, Taz George, Maia Woluchem, Alison Rincon

This month's edition of At A Glance, the Housing Finance Policy Center's reference guide for mortgage and housing market data, includes a special quarterly feature on GSE loan composition, repurchase rates, defaults, and loss severity.

Posted to Web: February 17, 2015Publication Date: February 17, 2015

Helping Families Involved in the Child Welfare System Achieve Housing Stability (Research Report)
Mary K. Cunningham, Mike Pergamit, Abigail Baum, Jessica Luna

The US Department of Housing and Urban Development (HUD)‘s Family Unification Program (FUP) provides low-income families involved in the child welfare system with housing vouchers. FUP is an important vehicle for understanding three issues: (1) the overlap between the child welfare system, housing, and homelessness; (2) how to provide housing to vulnerable, high-need families; and (3) how to facilitate cross-system partnerships between public housing agencies and child welfare agencies. The Urban Institute studied FUP design and implementation in eight sites and interviewed key staff and stakeholders about the program’s implementation and impact, highlighting common challenges, innovative practices, and system-level impacts.

Posted to Web: February 11, 2015Publication Date: February 11, 2015

The US Treasury's Credit Rating Agency Exercise: First Steps Out of the Private-Label Securities Desert (Research Report)
Laurie Goodman, Jim Parrott

As part of an effort to revive the moribund private-label securities (PLS) market, the US Treasury Department recently conducted an exercise with the major credit rating agencies. This exercise was intended to boost investor confidence in the ratings process—a critical piece of the PLS system that failed during the housing crisis. The exercise revealed five important lessons we discuss in this brief.

Posted to Web: February 06, 2015Publication Date: February 06, 2015

Understanding the Environmental Contexts of Boys and Young Men of Color (Occasional Paper)
Lynette A. Rawlings

The environments in which children grow up profoundly shape their socio-emotional health and development and set the stage for future success. This essay provides a framework for understanding how various settings influence lives of boys and young men of color. Failure to take these environments into account treats the problems experienced by this group as entirely of their own making and ignores the role that external forces play in contributing to poor outcomes. This essay provides a context for future research and analysis, in hopes that it will examine the lives and circumstances of boys and young men of color using more complex and nuanced perspectives.

Posted to Web: February 04, 2015Publication Date: February 04, 2015

Loss Severity on Residential Mortgages: Evidence from Freddie Mac's Newest Data (Policy Briefs)
Laurie Goodman, Jun Zhu

In this brief, new loan-level data recently released by Freddie Mac on more than 17 million single-family mortgages are analyzed to reveal a range of new and useful insights into the ultimate financial losses associated with a loan after it experiences a credit event. Conclusions described include mortgage insurance significantly lowers loss severities and the preset severity schedule currently in place is reasonable for loans with a loan-to-value (LTV) ratio of 60–80 but too high for deals backed by higher-LTV loans. We also find that small loans have higher severity than larger loans, that real-estate-owned (REO) sales have higher severity than short sales, and that there is no stable relationship between the state of origination and severity. Finally, we review the components of loss—liquidation value and expenses—and find that the latter contributes significantly to the ultimate loss.

Posted to Web: February 01, 2015Publication Date: February 01, 2015

Housing Finance At A Glance: A Monthly Chartbook : January 2015 (Fact Sheet / Data at a Glance)
Laurie Goodman, Ellen Seidman, Jim Parrott, Sheryl Pardo, Jun Zhu, Wei Li, Bing Bai, Karan Kaul, Taz George, Maia Woluchem, Alison Rincon

The January edition of At A Glance, the Housing Finance Policy Center’s reference guide for mortgage and housing market data, includes a comparison of FHA and conventional high-LTV lending fees, updated origination forecasts from the GSEs and MBA, and the latest measures of credit availability nationally and by metropolitan area.

Posted to Web: January 20, 2015Publication Date: January 20, 2015

The Federal Housing Finance Agency's Federal Home Loan Bank Members Proposal Overshoots the Mark (Policy Briefs)
Laurie Goodman, Jim Parrott, Karan Kaul

This brief examines the Federal Housing Finance Agency's proposed rule to prohibit captive insurers from becoming Federal Home Loan Bank (FHLB) members, a move which will essentially ban real estate investment trusts (REITs) from becoming FHLB members. Our analysis reviews the proposal's economic and practical considerations and concludes that any safety and soundness concerns pertaining to REITs and captive insurers can be effectively mitigated through existing regulation. Ultimately, we urge FHFA to take a more integrated view of the purpose REITs serve within the broader mortgage market, how captive insurers facilitate that purpose, and suggest alternatives for addressing the Agency's concerns.

Posted to Web: January 13, 2015Publication Date: January 13, 2015

A review and critique of the 2014 actuarial assessment of FHA's Mutual Mortgage Insurance Fund (Research Brief)
Laurie Goodman

The 2014 actuarial assessment of the Federal Housing Administration’s main funding source for its loan insurance program – the Mutual Mortgage Insurance Fund (MMI)- reveals that the FHA’s financial situation is much improved but not as strong as last year’s predictions suggested it would be. This HFPC analysis lays out the methods used in the actuarial report and explains why the MMI’s current status should have no impact on the decision as to whether to lower premiums.

Posted to Web: January 06, 2015Publication Date: January 06, 2015

Servicing Is an Underappreciated Constraint on Credit Access (Research Brief)
Laurie Goodman

The heightened and uncertain cost of servicing delinquent mortgage loans is a significant, although underappreciated, constraint on access to credit. Lenders can price loans to reflect the anticipated servicing costs, but it is very difficult to price for the uncertain costs of default servicing. The penalties resulting from not meeting the GSE and FHA timelines, along with restrictive and anachronistic limits on reasonable foreclosure expenses, create uncertainties that are difficult to quantify and price for. The result: lenders forgo lending to borrowers more likely to go delinquent. The FHFA has made great strides with recent changes to compensatory fees, but more needs to be done. Servicing delinquent FHA loans presents an even greater challenge. To expand the tight credit box, these servicing issues must be addressed.

Posted to Web: December 16, 2014Publication Date: December 16, 2014

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