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WASHINGTON-The federal financial regulators and the Department of Housing and Urban Development last week issued updated answers to the frequently asked questions on Home Mortgage Disclosure Act price data. HMDA data will include pricing information for the second year in a row for loans above reporting thresholds set by the Federal Reserve Board. Lenders have started making some of the data available to the public upon request and summary statistical reports will be available beginning in September through the Federal Financial Institutions Examination Council. Preliminary reviews indicate an increase in mortgage loans over the thresholds from 2004 to 2005. “The updated FAQs, in newly added Question 27, explain that an increase is expected because of changes in the interest rate environment from 2004 to 2005-specifically, the narrowing of the difference between short-term interest rates and long-term interest rates (sometimes referred to as a “flattening of the yield curve”). Changes in other factors, such as the business practices of lenders or the risk profiles or borrowing practices of borrowers, also could have affected the proportion of loans reported as higher-priced loans,” a joint agency statement, including NCUA, read.

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