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Homeowners Facing Foreclosure by Mnuchin’s Bank Urge Lawmakers to Reject His Nomination

HeadlineJan 19, 2017

Former Goldman Sachs executive Steven Mnuchin will also have his confirmation hearing for treasury secretary today. Mnuchin has faced criticism for his role at OneWest, a bank which has been called a “foreclosure machine” that profited from the collapse of the housing market. On Wednesday, homeowners who face foreclosure by OneWest or its subsidiaries testified at a meeting held by Massachusetts Senator Elizabeth Warren. This is 84-year-old Colleen Ison-Hodroff, who took out a reverse loan with the OneWest subsidiary Financial Freedom in 2006 on the home she and her husband, Monroe, had been living in since 1963.

Colleen Ison-Hodroff: “My husband Monroe passed on September 12th, 2014. A mere 10 days later, despite what we had been told, Financial Freedom contacted me and told me that I needed to pay off the loan immediately. This was news to me. I was in no financial position to do so. Since then, Financial Freedom has been trying to foreclose on me. I think this is an injustice, in that an elderly woman was deceived and now Financial Freedom is trying to take my home. I hear that Steve Mnuchin was a leader of the bank that is doing this to me and other seniors. I do not think a man like that should be the treasury secretary and in charge of our economy.”

That’s Colleen Ison-Hodroff speaking about her fight to save her home from foreclosure by a subsidiary of OneWest, Steven Mnuchin’s bank. Two organizations have filed a complaint with the Department of Housing and Urban Development accusing OneWest of discriminating against people of color by refusing to make loans to African Americans, Asian Americans and Latinos while Mnuchin was in charge of the bank. Ahead of today’s hearing, Mnuchin submitted a revised questionnaire, which reveals he is the director of investment fund Dune Capital International Ltd., which is incorporated in the tax haven the Cayman Islands. He also admitted he has management posts in seven other funds, which he claims he “inadvertently” failed to include on his first questionnaire. Fortune magazine recently reviewed financial disclosures by Mnuchin and reported that he’s worth as much as 10 times richer than previously thought, worth as much as $400 million.

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