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Moody’s on MERS in 1999: “No Material Impact on the Ability to Foreclose and Sell Foreclosed Homes”

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The folks at ForeclosureFraud were kind enough to pass along an archival document that I thought readers would enjoy.

This Moody’s report illustrates what the prospect of higher fees for securitization-related ratings did to rating agencies’ quality of analysis.

Moody’s MERS Report 1999

The arrogance of the MERS position (the Moody’s document is basically MERS dictation) is evident:

The recording system has been set up to provide notice of security interests, but not necessarily the identity of the secured parties…..

There will probably be an adjustment period during which the courts and the foreclosure attorneys will need to get familiar with MERS and learn how to deal with issues concerning foreclosure by a nominee that the foreclosure statues did not contemplate.

This makes for entertaining reading, in a sick sort of way. You’ll see again and again the notion that the law and the courts should give way to MERS. That’s consistent with what Gretchen Morgenson reported over the weekend, namely, that no review was made of the legality of MERS in any of the 50 states. The assumption was that MERS could simply be imposed.

I’d normally go through this document in more detail but it is a fairly short piece and I’d rather have readers read the original. It is a vivid example of the danger of uncritical acceptance of supposedly expert opinion.

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5 comments

  1. attempter

    That’s typical of our CRAs all right.

    But wasn’t that notion in the air then? Hadn’t they just repealed Glass-Steagal to legalize crimes Citi had already committed? And the CFMA was about to do the same for many others.

    So while it was arrogant, I guess it was a reasonable supposition. Credit ratings have been based upon market/wealth muscle, the assumption that “law” would follow bankster fiat, and the assumption that any big entity who got in trouble would be bailed out. It’s neatly stitched into kleptocracy.

    My only question is why they didn’t federally legalize MERS in, say, 2005. Would that have spooked the sucker investors?

  2. indio007

    This could not be more wrong…. Who wrote this part ?

    “Under common law principles, the mortgage is valid even though the name on the note is
    different than the name on the mortgage. The concept of undisclosed agency in business
    transactions has been around for a long time. The recording system has been set up to provide
    notice of security interests, but not necessarily the identity of the secured parties. ”

    Look a confession of non-disclosure of a material fact!

    The entire point of recording is to know the WHO that owns the property .

  3. Jammin11

    Im having a hard time understanding why people are not demanding that bank of america at the very least BE DISMANTLED.

    WHAT IS IT ABOUT THE PRECISELY DOCUMENTED CASES OF PEOPLE WHO DIDNT EVEN HAVE MORTGAGES AND WERE FORECLOSED ON THAT AMERICANS ARE HAVING A HARD TIME REALIZING IS OUTRIGHT CRIMINAL ACTIVITY? Will it take these sociopaths going to everyones home and saying “we show that we own this property, we are going to take it and sell it for our own profit” for americans to wake up and put an end to this ridiculous lunacy once and for all?

    It deserves to be yelled.
    If Washington wants a solution, Dissolve the bank and distribute the assets to everyone. Its that simple.
    Its a business that has repeatedly perpetrated theft, exploitation, and violation of law. There is no reason that it should be allowed to continue operating. If the shareholders are worried about their “stakes.” Give them the money of dissolved assets and allow them to reinvest it where ever they want.
    That will boost the economy.
    Give the wee homeowners who were tangled up in barb wire for 5 years enough to rebuild their lives.
    Take enough for the government to be able to steady itself and devote the resources to securing this ship in good stewardship like it obviously needs t be.

    And be done with it.
    Really. Why are we empowering an entity to wreak havoc on us all? Who are these 25,000 or so individuals working in the upper echelons of mega banks and wall street that should be so protected, and sit comfortably on pilfered accounts while the majority struggles to make ends meet?

    Enough is enough.
    I want my government to do what is right and disable these crooked thieves before it becomes a matter of failure of us all.

  4. MinnItMan

    This is unbelievable, as in someone paid for this? “Under common law principles,” Moody’s may be a corporate “imbecile”* and might have a recoupment defense for any payment.

    Common law almost always has a minority rule. Given that recording is, to the best of my knowledge, always in the first instance governed by a state recording statute (except for the IRS), citing common law is what you do when you run out of options.

    As you know, Minnesota has a “MERS statute,” that IMO, operates as a quasi-attorney-in-fact, and I think so long as a grant to MERS conforms to agency theory (which has both a statutory and common law scheme, the common law aspect still subject to majority and minority “rules,” whichever the state happens to follow), it should ok. But, documents like those presented to the BK court in OR may not fly, even here, because the principal, agent and beneficiary designations are so screwed up. If 1 in 100000 of these were reviewed prior to recording, I’ll buy somebody a burrito.

    I have read only two of the Oregon cases so far, but one aspect of the case that was obvious to me is there are third party doc prep companies, usually owned by fin service conglomerates, that have a ton of exposure, IMO, for many different reasons.

    “Imbecility of mind is (a term) hardly capable of exact or comprehensive definition. It is generally applied to a lack of normal mentality not so complete or absolute as exists in the condition we called idiocy but greater and more marked than in cases in which in normal parlance we apply the milder term feeble-mindedness.”

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