HSBC Has Not Signed the Foreclosure Agreement – Yet

by on HSBC Foreclosures

Activist Wearing a Guy Fawkes Mask Outside HSBC Bank

Clive Chilvers /

So far, there have been two foreclosure settlement agreements involving major lenders due to the real estate market crash and foreclosure crisis. The first settlement agreement was reached in early 2012 and involved the top five lenders – Bank of America, Wells Fargo, Citigroup, Ally Financial, and JP Morgan Chase – and 48 state attorney generals. HSBC was not part of this $26 billion foreclosure settlement agreement.

The second foreclosure settlement agreement was reached recently and so far 10 of the 14 banks have signed on the dotted line. The $8.5 billion foreclosure settlement agreement involves cash payments to homeowners who faced foreclosure throughout 2009 and 2010 as well as additional funding for foreclosure prevention programs. Although 10 of the lenders have agreed to the terms of this settlement, HSBC has yet to commit.

Apparently HSBC and three other lenders (Ally Financial, EverBank and OneWest) are taking their time and closely reviewing the agreement details before making a commitment that would end their obligation to take part in the cost and so far ineffective independent foreclosure review process. Rumor has it that HSBC is considering the agreement and may be working out a different, yet similar agreement.

Beyond the Foreclosure Settlement Agreement

Although HSBC is currently wrapped up talks to reach an agreement that would end the independent foreclosure review process, the bank has a lot of other things going on right now as well. For example, HSBC has recently been involved in a lawsuit with homeowners who claimed that the bank was being paid by private mortgage insurers to refer them to new buyers.

At the same time, according to a report released in December, an investigation conducted by the U.S. Senate uncovered evidence suggesting that British multi-national bank HSBC not only assisted Iranian banks with avoiding sanctions levied by the U.S., but also helped Mexican drug cartels with money-laundering campaigns. Surely these serious actions resulted in a steep punishment, right? Not so much. Instead, the bank was slapped on the wrist and given a $1.9 billion fine.

Below is Jon Stewart’s take on the matter:

Unfortunately, lenders like HSBC have been engaging in wrongful actions involving everything from robo-signing to money laundering and are receiving minor “punishments” for their unethical actions (and sometimes inactions). Without steep consequences for their actions, these lenders will continue to spiral out of control with American taxpayers footing the bill.

In conclusion, HSBC has yet to reach an agreement to end the independent foreclosure review process, but an agreement is apparently in the works. However, that is probably the last thing on HSBC’s radar with all of their other unethical actions being brought to light over the last few months. One thing is certain: HSBC has been caught with its hands in the cookie jar. Unfortunately, the punishments have been anything but a deterrent.