Bank of America to settle with Fannie Mae

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Monday, January 07, 2013

Reuters: Bank of America on Monday announced roughly $11.6 billion of settlements with mortgage finance company Fannie Mae and a $1.8 billion sale of collection rights on home loans, in a series of deals meant to help the bank move past its disastrous 2008 purchase of Countrywide Financial Corp.

The settlements and transactions and other charges will result in Bank of America posting only a small profit for 2012's fourth quarter. The bank is due to report results on January 17.

Bank of America is paying $3.6 billion to Fannie Mae and buying back $6.75 billion of bad loans from the mortgage company to clear up all claims that government-owned Fannie Mae had made against the bank.

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There’s a fascinating article in the December issue of the Harvard Business Review about a profound power shift taking place in business and society. It’s a long read, but the gist revolves around the tension between “old power” and “new power” as a driver of transformation. Here’s an excerpt:

Old power works like a currency. It is held by few. Once gained, it is jealously guarded, and the powerful have a substantial store of it to spend. It is closed, inaccessible, and leader-driven. It downloads, and it captures.

New power operates differently, like a current. It is made by many. It is open, participatory, and peer-driven. It uploads, and it distributes. Like water or electricity, it’s most forceful when it surges. The goal with new power is not to hoard it but to channel it.

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That sounds like a call to arms. Or a New Year’s resolution. Old power or new, the goals are the same: to be a force for positive change in the world. Happy 2015!

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