$26 billion agreement reached to aid underwater, foreclosed homeowners

It's a significant settlement, given the numbers of homeowners involved and the dollar amount. But it will have minimal impact on the housing sector. Wall Street Journal: Government officials have finalized an agreement worth as much as $26 billion with five major banks, capping a yearlong push to settle federal and state probes of alleged foreclosure abuses by lenders. The deal represents the largest government-industry settlement since a multistate deal with the tobacco industry in 1998. The agreement covers five banks: Ally Financial Inc., Bank of America Corp.,Citigroup Inc., J.P. Morgan Chase & Co., and Wells Fargo & Co. Together, the five handle payments on 55% of all outstanding home loans, or about 27 million mortgages, according to Inside Mortgage Finance. Federal and state officials planned to announce the settlement Thursday morning in Washington after putting the finishing touches on the deal following a marathon negotiating session that ended after midnight...(Read Full Post)