• Pick-A-Pay Part

    October 12, 2009 // Comments Off

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    And the other shoe drops. Wachovia has just reported a $393 million first quarter loss, and plans to cut 500 jobs. Much of the loss is attributed to Wachovia’s expansion into the mortgage industry, just as this sector was about to collapse. I reported on Wachovia’s ill-timed acquisition of Golden West Financial and its flagship Pick-A-Payment loan product over the weekend.
    The Pick-A-Pay loans were portfolio loans for Wachovia, meaning that the lender kept these loans in house instead of selling them to outside investors. Wachovia received the benefit of the higher interest rates on these loans, but also had all of the risk if borrowers defaulted. In their earnings report, Wachovia noted that the number of mortgage defaults on their loans nearly doubled in the first quarter. With the information I have, I can’t say what percentage of these defaults were Pick-A-Pay loans. It is noteworthy, however, that Wachovia is experiencing defaults with their Golden West portfolio, which is heavily invested in hard hit West Coast markets. The losses are enough that Wachovia is curtailing or eliminating the Pick-A-Pay loan in several of these markets.

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