In today's news, Bloomberg reports that three of the nation's biggest mortgage lenders -- Wells Fargo, JP Morgan and Citicorp -- are all reporting profits as their revenues increase. Which is good not only for the financial industry, but for Florida's fight against the Great Recession.
What's happening? According to the Wall Street Journal, for example, Wells Fargo saw a 29% boost in profits because of an increase in business loans and a decrease in loan losses.
Wells Fargo, JP Morgan, Citicorp: these lenders are the biggies - together with Bank of America (which reported a loss this quarter) and Ally Financial Inc. - that are currently negotiating with the federal government and the coalition of state attorneys general regarding widespread allegations of foreclosure fraud. Bloomberg's story reports that as a result of these settlement talks, the banks may have to pay over $20 billion in penalties - but that's not official.
Meanwhile, the costs to get a mortgage continue to increase across the United States. Closing costs have jumped 10% in one year for those buying homes in New York, and the trend of higher closing costs is spreading throughout the states. Bottom line, it's getting more expensive to buy a home these days.
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