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Tag Archive: Bailout

HAMP helps few homeowners, but program continues

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The current tumult in the nation’s economy—high unemployment, large federal deficits, a downgrade in the U.S. credit rating and the resultant gyrations of stock prices—stem from the collapse of the housing bubble in 2007 and 2008 and subsequent meltdown of financial markets. While government programs enacted as part of the Emergency Economic Stabilization Act of 2008 propped up banks, brokerages and other firms—including auto manufacturers General Motors and Chrysler—the principal program to help homeowners has not fared nearly as well. HAMP logo In 2009, the Department of Treasury launched the Home Affordable Modification Program, or HAMP, to help ease the financial woes of three to four million Americans by adjusting mortgage rates to make their homes more affordable. The program provides an incentive to banks, giving them a predetermined amount for every modification completed. One of the goals of HAMP is to keep homes from being foreclosed upon, protecting local real estate markets from the declining prices that vacant, unsold homes can have on entire neighborhoods.

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Ethics broadens Waters probe to examine communications with key committee

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The House Ethics Committee is said to have broadened its inquiry into Rep. Maxine Waters by examining whether the Financial Services Committee fully complied with requests to turn over documents. Waters was scheduled to go on trial last month for inappropriately using her position in Congress to aid a bank that her husband had an ownership stake in in receiving money from the government bank bailout fund. That trial was delayed due to the revelation of a new e-mail that could be used as corroborating evidence. The revelation of that e-mail has led to broader questions of whether there is other evidence being withheld. The Washington Post reports:

Four officials, congressional staff members, and others familiar with the probe confirmed on Thursday that her trial was postponed two weeks ago in part to explore the delay in not turning over that e-mail and to examine whether other evidence was withheld.

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