Fed Chairman Ben Bernanke told Congress that he shoulders the blame for an 18-month independent foreclosure review process that was performed at, in his words, "a very expensive cost per file evaluated."  In his testimony before the House Financial Services Committee,  Bernanke described as a mistake the OCC’s directive obligating banks to retain independent consultants for a loan-by-loan review after paying consultants in excess of $1.5 billion dollars. Blog readers will recall that the review was halted in January 2013 as part of a multi-billion dollar settlement with the 14 largest banks.  Bernanke added that "We've changed the process to a much quicker, more streamlined process, which is going to cut out the consultants, and which will have checks going out to borrowers very, very shortly within weeks."