— The company’s suite of products provide a transparent process for buyers and sellers —

The last 18 months have seen a significant shift in both the primary and secondary mortgage markets. Facing shrinking loan volume and compressed margins, lenders have broadened their loan products for borrowers who fall outside of traditional government or conforming guidelines, prompting investors to add programs that incorporate these loans.

But these new opportunities present real challenges. The number of investors has grown significantly since the financial crisis, with 150 organizations now actively buying loans. And the types of loans available for purchase have also multiplied. Combined, these factors have compounded the complexity of the secondary marketing function, demanding sophisticated automation for accurate content management and execution.

Fortunately, Optimal Blue has spent the last several years relentlessly auto-mating the entire secondary marketing process — from content to commitment, and everything in between — and can meet these challenges head-on.

Optimal Blue, founded in 2002, provides not only industry-leading solutions for originators and investors but also an enterprise-level, end-to-end platform that processes more than $750 billion worth of transactions each year. Its Digital Mortgage Marketplace connects mortgage buyers and sellers in an efficient, transparent process that facilitates a broad set of secondary market interactions.

The company’s view into the data associated with these transactions led it to develop the Optimal Blue Mortgage Market Indices (OBMMI) to provide consumers and mortgage professionals with greater visibility into key drivers of mortgage pricing. Based on actual locked rates with consumers across more than 30% of all mortgage transactions nationwide, OBMMI provide the most extensive and accurate interactive analysis of pricing ever conducted in the mortgage industry.

OBMMI aggregates data from 2 million transactions a year between 800 lenders, 3,000 brokers, and 200 buyers of loans and synthesizes that data into 16 primary and detailed mortgage rate indices. Updated daily through a robust API, the indices can be compared with each other to isolate specific market movements and spot trends.

“For close to two decades, Optimal Blue has led the mortgage industry with pricing automation technology designed to facilitate transactions between consumers and lenders,” explained Bob Brandt, vice president of marketing and alliances at Optimal Blue. “Complete with the industry’s largest product eligibility and pricing library, and backed by an unparalleled commitment to accuracy, Optimal Blue’s platform ensures that consumers are presented with the best-fit financing alternatives and that lenders consistently deliver the best price.”

Optimal Blue continues to evolve its platform, providing lenders and investors with inspired technology that automates key functions of the secondary marketing process.

AUTOMATING THE SECONDARY MARKETING FUNCTION

Product Eligibility & Pricing

Optimal Blue is the largest product eligibility and pricing (PPE) provider in the industry, serving more than 50% of the market and processing $600 billion worth of rate locks every year. The company has made significant investments to automate this functionality and the result is a robust system that delivers a single source of compliant pricing with 99.995% accuracy, making Optimal Blue’s PPE the system of record for the mortgage industry.

That accuracy is a hallmark of Optimal Blue, which uses an extensive set of product filters to identify applicable loan programs and then evaluates best execution pricing among eligible products. This capability is even more critical given the growing number of non-QM loan products in the market.

In addition to the execution, content, and margin management that Optimal Blue’s flagship PPE is known for, the company recently rolled out a new innovation — a “lights-out” lock desk functionality that can automatically lock the loan, change the lock, change the product type, grant exceptions, and more.

“When it comes to secondary marketing, the lock desk is a high-cost function,” said Optimal Blue CEO, Scott Happ. “We’ve automated the entire process. Lenders can configure auto-accept policies for locking and relocking products with characteristics that don’t require a manual touch, thereby reducing lock desk involvement in scenarios where automated policies can do the work instead.”

Hedging

Optimal Blue’s sophisticated hedge advisory and analytics platform integrates seamlessly with its PPE and digital loan trading platforms. This automated collaboration provides Optimal Blue clients with a tremendous competitive advantage.

First, interest rate locks from the PPE flow into the pipeline in real time, ensuring that the hedge position is always fully updated. Second, the broadest possible set of executions is available, ensuring that lenders will always discover the best price.

In addition, automating the loan trading and committing process through the Resitrader system reduces costs and error rates. “By combining exceptional analytics with unmatched system integration, Optimal Blue is uniquely positioned to help lenders succeed when deploying a mandatory execution strategy,” Happ said.

Loan Trading

In July 2018, Optimal Blue acquired Resitrader, creating the mortgage industry’s largest mortgage loan trading platform. Resitrader’s interactive trading environment enables buyers, sellers, and their advisors to transact in real time using an auction process and replaces the widely-used method of exchanging bid tapes via email.

The solution also helps traders optimize executions by supporting shadow-bidding, the posting of axes, chat-based communication, and color reports. Resitrader has achieved remarkable success with its trading platform over the past year, recording a 400% increase in transactions.

Optimal Blue has made it easy for investors to use Resitrader through the recent launch of another robust API designed to integrate with investors’ existing, internal systems. The APIs embed and trigger the market-leading capabilities of Resitrader into whatever trading application the investor is currently using, similar to the API plug-in capability offered through Optimal Blue’s PPE.

“Most clients are perfectly fine with coming into the Resitrader system to do their business,” explained Happ. “However, the largest investors look to our highly functional and real-time APIs to integrate with their own infrastructure and technology, so they are still able to take advantage of the benefits of the Resitrader platform. This is just another step for us to integrate into investor and origination businesses to maximize the efficiencies they require.”

Social Media Platform

Social media is an extremely powerful business development tool for lenders and Optimal Blue provides the only fully automated social media compliance platform designed specifically for the mortgage industry. The comprehensive platform enables lenders to manage the social media activities of loan officers through audits, monitoring, and collaboration. The audits are point-in-time, comprehensive reviews, while automated monitoring constantly evaluates social activity and proactively identifies trigger terms and keywords to isolate compliance concerns requiring remediation.

This piece was originally featured on HousingWire.com.

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PRESS CONTACT FOR OPTIMAL BLUE
Robert J. Brandt
Vice President, Marketing & Strategic Alliances
(469) 609-5585
bbrandt@optimalblue.com

— Expanded capabilities significantly enhance social media oversight solution —

Leading provider of secondary marketing automation and services in the mortgage industry, Optimal Blue, announced today the launch of real-time social media compliance monitoring – the subsequent phase of its unique and leading-edge service to address the growing industry need to monitor social and digital media communications within a regulatory framework. This release of fully-automated monitoring functionality complements the current compliance auditing capabilities by providing a thorough solution set to seamlessly manage the inherent compliance risks associated with the rapid growth of social media usage in the mortgage industry.

The new real-time monitoring functionality is unlike any other service being offered in the mortgage space today. Relevant mortgage ‘trigger terms’ are built in to the Optimal Blue platform enabling the system to crawl the internet in search of potential infractions across corporate digital properties or a loan officer’s social networking profile. Customized trigger terms can also be added for specific organizational needs. When identified, an automated alert is delivered in real time to encourage quick resolution and remediation, lowering compliance risk and limiting reputational damage.

“In today’s social media landscape, it is imperative to take a proactive approach,” explained Scott Happ, CEO of Optimal Blue. “By introducing a comprehensive monitoring module, clients can easily detect and resolve issues before they become costly. This also creates a phenomenal opportunity to train staff and loan officers regarding the compliance responsibilities related to social and digital media.”

Originators looking to create an efficient and scalable social media monitoring program value Optimal Blue’s social media compliance system because it enables them to combine periodic audits with ongoing monitoring. Additionally, the system delivers comprehensive trend reports and provides users with valuable insights into social media risk factors. “The Optimal Blue social media platform has completely altered the way we manage our loan officer’s social activity,” said Laura Kardow, Director of Compliance with Open Mortgage, LLC. “The addition of monitoring to an already progressive audits program has created more transparency into digital risk assessment and allows us to address any potential issues – immediately.”

For additional information on maintaining compliance and your corporate reputation while promoting the use of social media to grow business, Optimal Blue has developed a resource titled, “Monitoring Your Employees’ Social Media Activity.”

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PRESS CONTACT FOR OPTIMAL BLUE
Robert J. Brandt
Vice President, Marketing & Strategic Alliances
(469) 609-5585
bbrandt@optimalblue.com

— The company continues to refine secondary market automation for lenders —

Optimal Blue’s significant investment in developing and deploying comprehensive secondary market automation propelled the company’s growth in the first half of 2017, netting a 21% increase in new clients.

The company released a number of new enhancements to its end-to-end technology this year, including a market share analytics solution, a business intelligence tool and a social media compliance solution.

It also launched capabilities that integrate mortgage technology systems across the industry. Through its highly scalable API interface platform, lenders can easily integrate compliant product and pricing content with the leading third-party technology and service providers they rely upon for lead generation, CRM, consumer-direct, mobile, LOS and more.

With Optimal Blue solutions, lenders can automate their entire secondary marketing function and interact seamlessly with the industry’s largest network of leading investors, all through a single, unified platform.

“The competitive mortgage industry landscape comes with numerous complex challenges, and our goal is to enable customers to manage and conquer those challenges as simply and as efficiently as possible,” said Scott Happ, CEO of Optimal Blue.

Optimal Blue’s Digital Mortgage Marketplace connects originators, investors and providers and the company continues to forge strategic partnerships with other mortgage tech providers, such as Roostify and Easy Mortgage Apps. In May, Optimal Blue announced its acquisition of Comergence, a provider of due diligence automation and ongoing surveillance services.

“Optimal Blue and Comergence are well-aligned around our principal mission of facilitating transactions between buyers and sellers of loans,” Happ said. “Comergence solutions help build trust and confidence among marketplace participants by verifying third-party compliance in real-time, a capability unmatched in the industry.”

The Comergence acquisition was one more milestone in the company’s ultimate two-pronged mission: to enable originators to automate their entire secondary marketing operation, from content through commitment; while enabling investors and leading providers to accelerate the loan origination process by leveraging automated data exchange, streamlined value delivery, robust innovations and actionable business intelligence.

The market response to Optimal Blue’s development and acquisition of cutting-edge solutions had been dramatic, with record customer growth and adoption this year. The company’s Digital Mortgage Marketplace already touches one of every four mortgage loans in the U.S., and Optimal Blue is poised to continue that growth with its commitment to innovation.

“I am thrilled to welcome so many new customers to Optimal Blue, and I’m equally honored that they’ve entrusted our secondary marketing solutions to further automate their operation and successfully accomplish their technology and business goals,” Happ said.

This piece was originally featured on HousingWire.com.

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PRESS CONTACT FOR OPTIMAL BLUE
Robert J. Brandt
Vice President, Marketing & Strategic Alliances
(469) 609-5585
bbrandt@optimalblue.com

— Turnkey service automates regulatory oversight, eliminates manual tasks and financial risks —

Comergence, an Optimal Blue company and a trusted compliance solutions provider to the mortgage industry, announced today the launch of its newest compliance solution, Social Media Compliance. Powered by sophisticated regulatory intelligence capabilities and embedded with the specific policies and procedures of a licensed mortgage originator, the unique and leading-edge service addresses the growing need and seemingly insurmountable task of monitoring social and digital media communications within a regulatory framework.

“Social media is a powerful tool used more and more by today’s loan officers to source business. Yet, with numerous regulations today and even more expected in the future, the risk is high for unintentional social media mistakes that could pose significant financial risks for lenders,” stated Scott Happ, Chief Executive Officer of Optimal Blue. “We recognize that adherence to growing compliance demands will be challenging for lenders if social media compliance remains a manual, time-consuming effort coming at a great cost. By delivering this robust automation at an extremely affordable price, lenders discover an immediate ROI – regardless of whether they have five loan officers or hundreds.”

The Social Media Compliance system can evaluate social media activity across all loan officers and all venues in real time via automated scheduling. The platform also identifies potential violations, highlights usage trends, and provides 360-degree audit reports for a deeper violation review so lenders can communicate and remediate internally and externally – all within a single, turnkey compliance tool. The system provides enormous advantages for the hundreds of organizations that already rely upon other Comergence Compliance solutions, including streamlined organizational and user set-up.

“Social media presents a large playing field and a new frontier for today’s lenders that is not going away anytime soon. Leveraging automation removes the heavy lifting and positions lenders to properly take full advantage of the opportunities through this great marketing asset,” said Greg Schroeder, Vice President of Comergence. “Everything lenders need to self-manage social media compliance is available in our solution, bringing efficiencies, simplicities, and real-time oversight with little effort.”

For more information on the social media compliance demands in the mortgage industry, Optimal Blue has developed a resource titled The Importance of Developing a Social Media Compliance Policy. The white paper can be accessed at – http://comergencecompliance.com/smc-whitepaper1/.

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PRESS CONTACT FOR OPTIMAL BLUE
Robert J. Brandt
Vice President, Marketing & Strategic Alliances
(469) 609-5585
bbrandt@optimalblue.com