On February 29, the Office of the Comptroller of the Currency (OCC) announced that it would require large national banks that service mortgages to provide on a monthly basis comprehensive mortgage data on all mortgages held by national banks and their subsidiaries and loans serviced for others. The intention is to build upon the efforts of the HOPE NOW alliance, a cooperative effort between investors, lenders and counselors, to help homeowners in danger of being foreclosed.

The letter making this request was sent to nine large national banks that “account for the overwhelming majority of national bank mortgage servicing.” According to the OCC release, the “data is expected to give the OCC and other regulators a more complete view of the market, which will aid in the agency’s supervisory work as well as help in preventing unnecessary foreclosures.”

National banks receiving the letter must provide by March 31, 2008, aggregate month-end mortgage data on a best efforts basis for October 2007, November 2007, December 2007, January 2008, and February 2008 in accordance with OCC metrics, data definitions, and reporting schedules. The release stated that the OCC is going to request similar data on home equity loans later this year.