A Federal Reserve System (FRS) research conference examining the causes and consequences of changes in housing and mortgage markets and possible policy responses was held December 4 and 5, 2008, at the Board of Governors. The conference was part of the FRS’s Homeownership and Mortgage Initiative. To see papers and presentations, go to www.richmondfed.org and select conferences and events, and the December conference.
Also as part of its Homeownership and Mortgage Initiative, the FRS has sponsored a series of forums on foreclosure related subjects. The forums, entitled Recovery, Renewal, Rebuilding, have been held on Research and Policy on Vacancy and Abandonment; Strengthening Neighborhoods in Weak Markets; and Confronting the Neighborhood Impacts of Foreclosure. Presentations can be viewed at www.stlouisfed.org/rrrseries .
The Federal Reserve Bank of Boston has published a discussion paper entitled “Foreclosure’s Price-Depressing Spillover Effects on Local Properties: A Literature Review.” It may be seen by going to www.bos.frb.org and selecting community development.
The Greater Philadelphia Urban Affairs Coalition (GPUAC) has issued a Winter 2009 edition of its Foreclosure Prevention Resource Guide. GPUAC revises the guide quarterly. To access the guide, go to www.gpuac.org/foreclosurehelp.htm .
The Federal Reserve Bank of Chicago invites the submission of research- and policy-oriented papers for the 45th annual Conference on Bank Structure and Competition, which will be held May 6-8, 2009, at the InterContinental Hotel in Chicago. Submissions of high-quality research on all topics related to financial services, their regulation, and industry structure are welcome. For information, contact conference chairman Douglas Evanoff at (312) 322-5814 or go to www.chicagofed.org/index.cfm and select conferences and events.
“Economic Development Incentives: Research Approaches and Current Views” has been published in the Federal Reserve Bulletin. The author finds that enhanced incentive disclosures, greater access to local economic data, and stronger methodologies enable researchers to better assess the effectiveness of state and local incentives. Go to www. federalreserve.gov and click on community development.
The FRS conducts a semi-annual survey of the terms of credit card plans offered by financial institutions and publishes a report of the findings. Historical data from past surveys are available from 1990. To see the reports, go to www.federalreserve.gov/pubs/shop/survey.htm .
Joseph Firschein has been appointed community affairs officer in the Department of Consumer and Community Affairs (DCCA) at the FRS Board of Governors in Washington, D.C. He most recently served as director of REO disposition strategy at Fannie Mae, where he was responsible for creating and implementing strategy for selling Fannie Mae’s inventory of single-family homes acquired through foreclosure.
Allen Fishbein has joined DCCA as an advisor. He previously served as director of housing and credit policy for the Consumer Federation of America, general counsel with the Center for Community Change, and senior advisor for government-sponsored enterprises at HUD. He has written reports on subprime lending, CRA lending, and other housing topics and serves on a number of advisory councils, including those of NeighborWorks and the Center for Responsible Lending. He can be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org .
John Blake has been appointed acting secretary of the Pennsylvania Department of Community and Economic Development (DCED). He had been executive deputy secretary of DCED and earlier served as vice president and senior development advisor for PNC Bank’s northeast and central Pennsylvania markets. He can be reached at email@example.com .
Kevin Dow has become deputy director of commerce for neighborhood and business services with responsibility for the city of Philadelphia’s services to small businesses. He previously worked at Wachovia Bank, where he was responsible for the bank’s corporate, philanthropic, and employee engagement strategies for the northern region. He can be reached at (215) 683-2018 or firstname.lastname@example.org .