Housing recovery hampered by lending
An analysis published by the Wall Street Journal showed that the nation’s 10 largest mortgage lenders denied 26.8% of loan applications in 2010, an increase from 23.5% in 2009.
The mortgage data analyzed, which was obtained from banking regulators, included refinance requests as well as new-home loans. Among home purchase applicants, lenders denied 19.9%, up from 18.2% in 2009. The refi applications were denied 27.2% of the time, compared with 24.4% the previous year.
The Wall State Journal was able to obtain the data as the result of the Home Mortgage Disclosure Act, which requires lenders to disclose these figures. The top 10 lenders accounted for 70% of loan originations last year, although many were obtained after smaller firms approved the loans.
The analysis showed that denials increased in every state except Delaware. They were highest in Miami, Detroit and New Orleans and lowest in Raleigh, N.C.; Bethesda, Md.; and San Jose, Calif.
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Toro acquires maker of turf renovation products
The Toro Co. acquired Lawn Solutions Commercial Products, a manufacturer of innovative turf renovation equipment for the landscape, rental, municipal and golf markets.
The acquisition, which includes a dedicated lineup of aerators, seeders, power rakes and brush cutters, adds key product categories to Toro’s portfolio to support growth across its core global businesses.
Terms of the transaction were not disclosed.
“Turf renovation is a natural category for Toro, having built our company around turf maintenance for almost 100 years,” said Michael Drazan, VP of the Bloomington, Minn.-based company’s contractor business. “These products complement our brands and markets extremely well, while extending our offering to customers worldwide. With our expanded distribution and market strength, we believe we can deliver significant share growth in these categories.”
Based in Louisville, Ky., Lawn Solutions was founded in 2006. As part of the purchase, David Cook, owner of Lawn Solutions, will continue to consult with Toro after the acquisition.
Home Depot offering wind turbines
Home Depot has partnered with Southwest Windpower, a manufacturer of residential wind generators, to offer the Skystream 3.7 wind turbine at select Home Depot stores.
The installed program will be offered in Home Depot stores in Texas, Nevada, Idaho, Utah, Wyoming and California. The company said it plans to expand the program to windy locations across the United States.
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