A clearer picture

Fraud has gone to the top of the postmortem on the US subprime debacle. To detect and prevent it, more information at the loan level is needed, and the standardisation of data would also help investors in mortgage-backed securities make better decisions, discovers Han-Nee Tay

With the US and European securitisation markets effectively closed because of ongoing turbulence in the credit markets, there are more than a few people left gloomily twiddling their thumbs and searching for answers as to what went wrong.

It's the issue of transparency that has come to the fore, especially with regards to the availability and quality of loan level data. Without a clear understanding of the characteristics of the underlying collateral, market participants have come to admit that

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