Monday, December 10, 2007

Robert Toll on the Sub Prime Bailout

A few excerpts from the Toll Brothers fourth quarter conference call held last week courtesy of Seeking Alpha

Robert Toll had some interesting comments on the new plan announced by the Federal Government.

Comments on Sub Prime Loan Plan

"With respect to what do I think about the most recent announcements, to be a wise guy, not much. There is no such thing as a sub-prime loan. There’s a sub-prime borrower; that is a borrower who hasn’t got the credit, the respect for his credit in the marketplace that’s equal to what you would consider to be necessary, which we call now prime. A little misnomer in the use of the words."

"What I understand has been offered to the congress to consider and pass is a break for sub-prime. So if you’ve got -- sub-prime borrowers, so that if you are not credit worthy, we’ll give you five years at your present rate but the next door neighbor, who decided he liked the teaser mortgage and went for four for the first six months and six for the next six months and then according to an index with a differential, he would be pushed to eight and then to 10, he’s stuck because he had prime rating."

"I think what would have made more sense, if I were running the zoo, is I would have said we are going to stop teasers, not just sub-prime but for everyone at a rate and pick a number. If we think a -- we’ve done it in the past. The rates used to be regulated in this country up to the elimination of Regulation Q. I think that was in the ‘70s when disintermediation took place."

"I think it wouldn’t be a great feat for us to say that for the next two years, we are going to cap the rates for teaser mortgages at 8%, or 8.5%, which has been approximately the 40-year average rate that we’ve lived with."

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