Taking on foreclosure on the gridiron

Marketplace Staff Aug 8, 2008
HTML EMBED:
COPY

Taking on foreclosure on the gridiron

Marketplace Staff Aug 8, 2008
HTML EMBED:
COPY

TEXT OF STORY

Tess Vigeland: Change of possession will take on an entirely new meaning at Gillette Stadium this week. The home of the New England Patriots will play host to a foreclosure prevention workshop.

The NFL team’s charitable foundation is teaming up with the Federal Reserve Bank of Boston. Borrowers who face foreclosure will have a chance to tackle the problem head-on by meeting with lenders and counselors.

Commentator Dan Drezner has the play-by-play.


Dan Drezner: It’s a lovely day here at Gillette Stadium and the crowd is really looking forward to this exciting contest between the Borrowers and the Lenders, sponsored by the Boston Fed. This is not the first meeting between these two, but it’s the first in a neutral site.

We expect to see a competitive match here today. For years, the Borrowers’ hallmark style has been a mix of Hail Mary passes on offense and an aggressive tackling style on defense. They take out adjustable-rate mortgages and home equity loans with a vengeance, showing no concern for themselves or their future financial health. When pinned to their own goal line, the Borrowers always rely on their excellent punting game: They’ve deferred debt obligations for close to a decade now. It’s an imperfect squad, however.

Some in the press box say the Lenders have been lax in their preparation. A lack of organization and a failure to have all their paperwork in order could hurt their chances in this contest. The Borrowers are also understandably nervous about playing in front of a crowd. For many participants, this might be the first time they will have to acknowledge which team they’re on.

At first glance, the Lenders seem to be hold all of the cards for this match. They have been an unstoppable force for over a decade now. Part of their success on the playing field has come from their willingness to scout global capital markets in search of fresh talent. Every time it seems they’re going to come up short, they’ve been able to inject new resources from abroad. There have also been whispers that the Lenders have profited from working the referees to get more favorable calls. Still, some analysts believe that their winning streak is about to come to an end. The Lenders have lost a lot of depth as their foreign sources have started to dry up. They could be headed for a big fall.

Of course, in this game, it’s not really a question of wins and losses; it’s whether both sides will be able to continue playing.


Vigeland: Dan Drezner coaches International Politics at Tufts University.

As a nonprofit news organization, our future depends on listeners like you who believe in the power of public service journalism.

Your investment in Marketplace helps us remain paywall-free and ensures everyone has access to trustworthy, unbiased news and information, regardless of their ability to pay.

Donate today — in any amount — to become a Marketplace Investor. Now more than ever, your commitment makes a difference.