Phil Grossfield's Blog


Monthly Archives: July 2012

TERROR at the Barbershop; Bernanke Speaks

My Schedule…and A Little Extra:  I was terrified of the outcome but I sat there as still as possible…desperately trying not to flinch.  Thus was the strategy while I got my haircut from a girl that seemed more uncomfortable than I was.  After I sat down in the chair and the body-cover-cape-thing was drawn over me I started to realize what I was in for…she began to speak and she didn’t stop…ever.  While in full verse she began to examine my hair…pulling and separating in an effort to determine her strategy…this seven minute endeavor felt like an hour.  At this point there was no cutting so I started to plan my escape but she kept throwing questions at me which made it difficult to concentrate on the fastest and most sensitive way to exit.  Then the compliments came, “you have awesome hair…I know a lot of people that would kill to have your texture.”  My response was sketchy, “Eh, thanks, I, uh, have decent hair to, uh, make up for all the other deficiencies on my head,” I said.  It was official…I was trapped…I was in for the duration.  Then she picked up the scissors and that’s when I noticed the larger than normal bandage on her middle finger, “What happened to your finger?” I asked.  “Oh, I cut my finger on a haircut yesterday…nothing a quick trip to Urgent Care couldn’t fix.  But don’t worry, the man’s hair I cut looked great!”  Oh Lord help me.  When she was ready to start cutting I was physically shaking as balls of sweat started to bead down my face.  She prepared to cut like a golfer ready to hit her drive…back and forth…back and forth.  Then she took her first snip as I shut my eyes in fear…I was motionless like one of those human statue street performers.  She moved the scissors like one of those bartenders in Cocktail with Tom Cruise.  With each snip only a few hairs came off…she just kept cutting and cutting and cutting and cutting.  Ahhhhhhhhhhhhhhh!  I kept my eyes closed and answered her relentless questions with “uh huh.”  At the end she gave me the mirror to inspect my hair but I was too afraid to look and way too anxious to get out of the chair so I said, “I trust you…I’m sure it looks great!”  I threw a twenty on the counter, forfeited the stamp on my visit card, and ran full sprint to the car.

My Market Watch:  Rates are the same as yesterday.  Ben Bernanke, the Federal Reserve Chairman, testified today to the House and Senate.  He said nothing about Quantitative Easing, he mentioned the housing market is improving and that the Fed is prepared to act if necessary.  This resulted in stocks falling and bonds held their ground.  Normally on such news bonds would improve…but where can they go?  Our 30-year is 3.500% with (2.250) back and our 30-year High Balance is 3.625% with (1.750) back.  This is all good for rates…take advantage for it cannot last….   Disclaimer

My Schedule: Working from home this morning and in the field this afternoon….

UPDATED DAILY:                                                                                                     

Guideline Guidance to get a clean underwriting decision resulting in happiness and adulation…you could IGNORE THIS and find yourself with a long list of conditions, a huge hassle, and massive frustration

My Procedures are updated daily – check it out…

Wedding Anniversary; The Fed Testifies

My Schedule…and A Little Extra:  On Saturday I celebrated my 11th wedding anniversary.  Every other year we take turns on who plans the anniversary and this year it was my turn so I had to plan it (I mean I got to plan it).  As you may or may not know my wife is a travel writer and planner-extraordinaire.  She is kind and thoughtful and thoughtful (yes, I said it twice).  When she plans the night there is usually a theme involved.  This is a very intimidating standard for any typical man to live up to.  Well, I think I pulled it off (I definitely pulled it off).  We started out the day like normal with swim lessons for the kids and then dropped them at a neighbor’s house just after lunch – the babysitter would take over from there later.  I had planned to take the family to a play that morning but my wife gave me a pass that it was overkill (whew!).  So, my wife and I went to La Jolla for a quick bite and then couples massages complete with flower petals, chocolates and champagne.  Although it was a little corny for us, the service was great, the massages were excellent, and the overall experience was memorable.  After our facials (yes, we got facials too and yes, I got one) we went to dinner at Eddie V’s with a view overlooking La Jolla cove.  Not shabby, eh? J

My Market Watch:  Rates are better today and as low as I’ve seen them if memory serves.  Ben Bernanke, the Federal Reserve Chairman, testifies to the House and Senate this week.  We know he has to address the issues our economy faces but it’s scary to think what action they might take…the government’s involvement in our business has not exactly been stellar…at least that’s this AE’s opinion….  Disclaimer

My Schedule:  Working from home this morning and in the field this afternoon….

UPDATED DAILY:                                                                                                     

Guideline Guidance to get a clean underwriting decision resulting in happiness and adulation…you could IGNORE THIS and find yourself with a long list of conditions, a huge hassle, and massive frustration

My Procedures are updated daily – check it out…

Correction; Great Advice; Weekend Lock-Cutoff

GREAT ADVICE:  If you are in the woods, and you are alone, and you hear a noise in the next cabin, but nobody answers, and you hear an owl hoot nearby but you can’t see it, and the skin on the back of your neck begins to crawl, and you hear the noise in the cabin again, and nobody answers, DON’T GO SEE WHAT’S IN THE CABIN!  RUN LIKE HELL!

CORRECTION:  In my email this morning I incorrectly said Marlon Brando was in The Ten Commandments.  I meant Charlton Heston, not Marlon Brando.  I received a ton of emails about it…sorry.  Anyway, I maintain The Ten Commandments was one of the scariest movies of all time.                

Rates are good until Sunday night at 9:45pm PST.  Bonds were down at the close today and stocks were rallying after Wells Fargo and JPMorgan reported strong earnings for the quarter.  Not sure what that will mean for Monday’s rates but it’s good to know that if you feel like locking on today’s rates the window stays open for you through the weekend.

Click here for Quick Lock Instructions and click here for our Pricing Engine  (password is required)

Wells Fargo Exits Wholesale – FAQ; Friday the 13th

My Schedule…and No Extra:  Wells Fargo Exits Wholesale – What?!?!!!?!!  Wow!  Even though wholesale only represented about 5% of WF’s business, it was still a big chunk of the wholesale industry.  All day yesterday I received emails and phone calls from you asking me what I thought about the news.  Do I think it’s bad for our industry?  Yes, I do think it’s bad for our industry because whenever a major player like WF exits it scares everyone and why shouldn’t it scare you…AND, it’s Friday the 13thDo I think it will hurt my business at Interbank?  No, it will actually help my business, at least in the short-run because Wells was a competitor of mine.  Does Well’s exit negatively affect Interbank?  Absolutely not…not even in the slightest little itty bitty bit…to us it’s a non-event.  FYI, here’s a link to Wells Fargo’s announcement and here’s a link to a Bloomberg Article.  Let me know your thoughts…. |||  Does Friday the 13th scare you?  When I was a kid that movie freaked me out to the max.  I got so scared I slept under my sister’s bed for days, maybe weeks…I can’t remember because I blocked it out.  Even a TV commercial would scare the daylights out of me.  To this day I can’t watch those movies or commercials.  Even as I got older and went to overnight camp by a lake or vacations to the Boundary Waters Canoe Area (BWCA) that movie would creep into my head.  There is always a time when I had to off into the woods by myself, or walk home alone when it was getting dark, or friends wanted to do something in the middle of the night…BAM!  That creepy music would stick in my head.  Ugh!  Another movie that scared the living daylight out of me was the Ten Commandments with Charleton Heston.  Man, the power of G-d scared me to no end…I remember the feeling of watching it and then having to go to my room to go to bed…ALONE!  No way man!  I tell ya, that spot under my sister’s bed was verrrrrry comfortable.  |||  Tomorrow is my 11th Wedding Anniversary!

My Market Watch:  Rates are a little better than yesterday.  It’s a slow day with not much to report.  Bonds are performing a little worse from this morning’s start but nothing impactful at this point.  Disclaimer

My Schedule:  Today is a busy day.  Tomorrow is my 11th Wedding Anniversary and I have some last minute things that need to be taken care of….like a haircut.  Also, I have two appointments today.  I’ll do my best to reply to you in a timely manner but please be patient with replies….  Thanks!!

UPDATED DAILY:                                                                                                     
Guideline Guidance to get a clean underwriting decision resulting in happiness and adulation…you could IGNORE THIS and find yourself with a long list of conditions, a huge hassle, and massive frustration

My Procedures are updated daily – check it out…

He Said She Said; Wells Fargo Exits Wholesale

My Schedule…and No Extra:  She wouldn’t do what he wanted and he wouldn’t do what she wanted.  Sound familiar?  Well that was the story at bed-time last night.  Normally I can find some common ground…but last night my two kids would not agree on anything…nothing.  When faced with these situations, which is very rare, I do my best to come up with an alternative or distraction to get over it.  You know, try and get them to see a better/happier alternative…it usually works like a charm.  But last night I just couldn’t get it done…they rejected every single idea.  It’s almost like they insisted on being unhappy…they must have been over-tired…when reason is no longer possible.  Well, I refused to force anything so I called for back-up…my wife had to come upstairs to rescue me by taking over with one of the kids.  I have to say, it sure is nice to have that back up…I have no clue how a single parent gets it done night after night without help/relief.

My Market Watch:  Rates are the same as yesterday.  Economic reports and indicators continue to be poor and rates are holding steady as a result.  You see Wells Fargo’s announcement yet?  Disclaimer

My Schedule:  This morning I am working from home and I am out and about all afternoon.

UPDATED DAILY:                                                                                                     
Guideline Guidance to get a clean underwriting decision resulting in happiness and adulation…you could IGNORE THIS and find yourself with a long list of conditions, a huge hassle, and massive frustration

My Procedures are updated daily – check it out…

Purchases:      3-4 days from Submission (after registration)…prioritized throughout the process.

Refinances:     8 days from Submission (after registration)…45-day locks still recommended for all loans.

Conditions:     48 hours from last uploaded document.

Funding:         48-72 hours for document review and issuance of funding conditions…please refer to the broker portal for PTF conditions listed.

Global Economy; Dance In The Rain

My Schedule…and No Extra:  No extra today…no time and in no mood to think up something clever or interesting….

My Mystery Quote:  Life is not about waiting for the storm to pass…it’s learning to dance in the rain — Answer

My Market Watch:  Today there is an auction on 10-year notes and the Fed minutes from the last meeting will be released.  Although both of these events can move the markets, my research indicates that neither is expected to be that eventful. There is also chatter about a global recession from many economists.  This is of course good for bonds and rates.  But I advise you take all these comments, and future comments, with a grain of salt.  Although few will challenge the idea that the global economy and local economy are in danger of an official recession, the coming election will influence opinions greatly.  Of course, Republicans will try and paint a picture that things are worse than Bush left it and it’s all Obama’s fault.  Democrats will say they did a great job of holding off a worse crash that Bush was headed for and made great strides in preparing us to recover from the disaster dropped in their laps…but of course the job is not done and we need to stay the course.  Whichever side of the political battle you draw a sword for, the comments on our economy and even on the global economy will be skewed accordingly.  Disclaimer

My Schedule:  This morning I am working from home and I am out and about this afternoon.

What do I mean by unlimited/irrelevant?  To be exact, we have no overlays with respect to DTI…we are only focused on the DU Findings…with an Approve/Eligible, the DTI is absolutely irrelevant.  For example, if your DTI is 51% or more and you get a DU Approve/Eligible, then we’ll do the loan.  Let me know if you have any questions, okay?

Exceptions to LTV overlays are EASY TO GET.  If you are pricing something on our Pricing Engine and it gives you an error message because of LTV or CLTV, then you should email or call me ASAP.  It is VERY LIKELY you will get an exception approval if InterBank has an overlay that is permitted by Fannie Mae, and, I can usually get you an answer within the same day.  The process is VERY EASY and we’ll know in advance if the exception will be granted before you submit. Here are my precise instructions:  Exceptions – When and How to get an Exception

DTI Unlimited/Irrelevant With DU Approval; My IT Job

My Schedule…and A Little Extra:  I finally gave up after spending hours trying to figure it out.  My wife’s computer crashed yesterday, specifically with Outlook.  As her official IT guy, I spent all night trying to figure out why her deleted emails folder was corrupted…maybe it had something to do with the 30,000 emails in there and another 10,000 elsewhere.  I finally gave up and created an all new profile meaning exporting and importing everything with some tolerable data loss.  I’m sure this is extremely exciting news for you…I’m all keyed up just typing about it!  And so this is your Little Extra today…with little sleep you’re just going to have to suffer.  All right, well, that was fun.  I need to make more coffee.

My Mystery Lyric:  You’ve got me captured, I’m under your spell…I guess I’ll never learn — I have your picture, yes I know it well…Another page is turned — Are you for real, it’s so hard to tell…From just a magazine — Yeah, you just smile and the picture sells…Look what that does to me –I’ll wait till your love comes down…I’m coming straight for your heart — No way you can stop me now…As fine as you are…. — Answer

My Market Watch:  Bonds continue to trade at nice levels and stocks are not performing well…this is the one-two punch for us…great for our rates.  Today there is a note auction for 3-year notes.  Although this auction could move the markets I don’t anticipate any huge fluctuations.  Without anything else going on, there would have to be some big geopolitical news or weather or something.   Disclaimer

My Schedule:  This morning I am in an Interbank conference call and then a training I must attend.  As a result, I may be difficult to reach this morning and you may experience a delay in my email replies until this afternoon.  I will be behind the computer and available all afternoon….

LTV Exceptions Easy & Fast; Sunburn; I’m Loving It!

My Schedule…and A Little Extra:  I’m forty-four years old and I still haven’t learned how to prevent sunburn.  On Saturday I took the kids to swim class…my son swims at the outside pool for lessens so I lathered him up good with sunblock.  Afterwards we went to my best friends place to go swimming.  But I didn’t reapply the sunblock to my son which I have now learned is important for his pale vulnerable skin.  Moreover, I forgot to cover my back – just sun on skin.  Well, after 4 hours of shirtless fun, my son only had a minor sunburn but my back looks like an over-cooked lobster.  Seriously, what is wrong with me?  Maybe by the time I turn 88 I’ll figure it out….  That’s all I have to say about that.

My Trivia:  Who is the most recognizable character in the world other than Santa Claus? — Answer

My Market Watch:  The Jobs Report last week gave bonds a boost, or more accurately stated, it knocked stocks lower.  Rates today continue to benefit from that report and remain strong while stocks continue to drag.  Rates right now are excellent…I hope you’re taking advantage of it by contacting everyone you know.   Disclaimer

My Schedule:  Behind the computer all morning and then sporadic throughout the afternoon….

The Baby Didn’t Make It; Jobs Report

My Schedule…and A Little Extra:   Keep it in perspective my friends.  My best friend in Minneapolis is a fire fighter.  Yesterday his team was called out to help a child who was in distress.  When he got there he discovered it was a four-month old baby girl.  My friend couldn’t tell me the details…an investigation is pending.  But he told me he did his best, that his team did their best…but the baby girl didn’t make it…she died right there in his arms.  I’m tearing-up just typing about it.  Keep it in perspective my friends.  Yesterday my father was in a car accident…he unknowingly scraped up another car in a lot and then left the scene…there were several witnesses and cell phone cameras were present.  The police showed up at their door this morning and is requiring my Dad to go through a mandatory driving evaluation.  I spoke to my Mom and Dad this morning about it…they’re concerned his license will be revoked.  “Dad, are you okay?  Was anyone hurt?”  Did you hold a dying baby girl in your arms?  Keep it in perspective my friends.

My Mystery Magic:  Cool Card Trick

My Market Watch:  The Jobs Report came in weaker than expected.  They were expecting 100,000 new jobs in June and yesterday traders were buying and selling stocks and bonds based on that number.  But today the actual report showed only 80,000 jobs and as a result, traders are making moves and rates are better as a result.  Why?  Because traders feel the economy is weak after hearing the report.  Think about it…if there are less jobs than expected, then it’s fair to assume the economy is weaker than expected, right?  So, traders sold off stocks and bought bonds.  When they buy bonds, rates improve.  Does that make sense?  Moreover, there is a lot of upside to this report because the bond is now selling above a ceiling…that means it broke through that ceiling and there is potential for another climb.  I would be more excited about this but I just can’t imagine rates getting much better.  Anyway, let me know if you want to discuss it…I’d love to hear your perspective….  Disclaimer

My Schedule:  Behind the computer all day….

Sleep-Deprivation Took Its Toll; Jobs Report Tomorrow!

My Schedule…and A Little Extra:   Good times, y’all!  But sleep-deprivation had taken its toll.  On Tuesday we had a neighborhood celebration at our park.  There was food galore, face-painting, dancing, a hula-hoop contest, water balloon tossing, glow-sticks, and those big blow-up obstacle course things that my son went through about 75 times.  The night ended with fireworks and two very sleepy kids who finally got to bed about 3 hours past their normal bed-time.  Any idea what sleep-deprivation does to a 7 and 4 year old the next day?  Well, surprisingly the kids got through the day relatively unscathed as my wife and I prepared for a small neighborhood get-together.  Towards the end of the night, which lasted a little longer than we all really expected, the first evident sign of sleep-deprivation finally reared its ugly head.  I was approached by two of the other parents to inform me that my 4-year old was hitting kids with a plastic bat in the backyard.  At least it was a plastic bat, eh?  So then again, for the second night in a row, our two little ones got to sleep late.  The next morning, after I dragged my daughter out of bed, she uncharacteristically rejected her peanut-butter toast by shoving it on the floor.  At least it was just toast that was tossed, eh?  But who cares?  The kids will remember the park celebration and our little get-together and the bat hitting and toast tossing will be easily be forgotten, eh?  Good times y’all!  🙂

My Mystery Magic:  Cool Card Trick

My Market Watch:  Tomorrow is the Jobs Report and this is the one report that seems to have the biggest bang for markets moves, at least before the Euro-drama entered the scene.  So, traders are trying to figure out what’s gonna happen tomorrow.  As they do their guess-work, they are trading today in anticipation.  So, if the majority of traders feel the Jobs Report will be slightly weak tomorrow, and the report comes in as expected, then you’ll see little moves tomorrow.  But when the report is a surprise…something unexpected, look out!  One way or the other, bonds will trade high or low.  This is so exciting, don’t you think?!      Disclaimer

My Schedule:  Behind the computer all day….

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