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Celebrating NATIONAL E-SIGN DAY, June 30, 2010

June 29th, 2010 1 comment

Celebrating NATIONAL E-SIGN DAY,  June 30, 2010

On June 30, 2000 President Clinton signed into legislation the e-Sign Act. At that moment in time, for those of us in the field, we knew that this was a real ’Game Changer’ and will go down in history as one of the most significant pieces of legislation ever written. We applaud Representative James McDermott (D-WA) and his colleagues for sponsoring H.CON RES 290 celebrating e-SIGN’s 10 th Anniversary: (See Below)
H. CON. RES. 290
Expressing support for designation of June 30 as ‘‘National ESIGN Day’’.

IN THE HOUSE OF REPRESENTATIVES

JUNE 24, 2010
Mr. MCDERMOTT, et al,  submitted the following concurrent resolution;
which was referred to the Committee on Energy and Commerce

CONCURRENT RESOLUTION

Expressing support for designation of June 30 as ‘‘National
ESIGN Day’’.

Whereas the Electronic Signatures in Global and National
Commerce Act (ESIGN) was enacted on June 30, 2000,
to ensure that a signature, contract, or other record relating
to a transaction may not be denied legal effect, validity,
or enforceability solely because it is in electronic
form;

Whereas Congress directed the Secretary of Commerce to
take all actions necessary to eliminate or reduce, to the
maximum extent possible, the impediments to commerce
in electronic signatures, for the purpose of facilitating the
development of interstate and foreign commerce; and

Whereas June 30, 2010, marks the 10th anniversary of the
enactment of ESIGN and would be an appropriate date
to designate as ‘‘National ESIGN Day’’: Now, therefore,
be it
Resolved by the House of Representatives (the Senate
concurring), That Congress—
(1) supports the designation of a ‘‘National  ESIGN Day’’;

 
(2) recognizes the previous contribution made by Congress to the adoption of modern solution that keep the United States on the leading technological edge; and

•HCON 290 IH

(3) reaffirms its commitment to facilitating interstate and foreign commerce in an increasingly digital world.

•HCON 290 IH

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Pimco Report-No Quick Commercial Recovery

June 25th, 2010 No comments

As reported by Jon Lansner, OC Register
Pimco: No quick recovery for big properties
June 18th, 2010, 10:20 am · 18 Comments · posted by Jon Lansner
In the middle of last decade, bond traders at Pimco in Newport Beach spread out around the country to get a ground-level view of the housing market. What they found with this non-traditional research was a brewing disaster, reconnaissance that helped Pimco avoid the eventual pratfall of many mortgage investors.

This year, Pimco has repeated this front-line research with commercial real estate. Here’ s their conclusions:

Investor returning to the industry, but “optimism should be tempered” becuase Pimco thinks property pricing may be worse than commercial real estate indexesshow.
Distressed properties may be hard to sell, making a quick recovery unlikley.
Commercial real estate prices will remain 30% to 40% below 2007 peaks for three to five years and may not return to 2007 peaks until end of the decade.
Overall economic headwinds will force an broad rethinking of commercial real estate values and rents.

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UTAH Supreme Court Says E-Signatures Are Legal

June 23rd, 2010 No comments

We’re excited to hear that the use of e-Signatures continue to be upheld by the Courts and are getting closer to the Tipping Point – adoption is on the Rise!. This month we continue to ‘heighten the awareness’ and Celebrate the 10th Anniversary  of the passage of the e-Sign Act. Just imagine your own lifestyle and /or current business process-imagine what would it be liked if you never had to use a fax machine, a scanner, expensive couriers or just ’pen on paper’ – Gone! Here is Ed Silverstein’s unedited version…

 June 22, 2010

By Ed Silverstein
TMCnet Contributor
A new ruling by the Utah Supreme Court – that state election officials must accept online petition signatures to qualify candidates for the ballot – is seen as growing evidence of the acceptance of online signatures on legal or governmental documents.
Utah law “does not require a signor to physically handle a piece of paper and sign her name with a pen; an electronic signature is sufficient to satisfy the Election Code,” the justices wrote in their 15-page opinion released this week.
The justices ruled in favor of Farley Anderson, an independent candidate for governor of Utah. On March 18, 2010, Anderson presented to Lieutenant Governor Greg Bell a nominating petition signed by over 1,000 Utah voters, as is required by the Election Law for independent candidates wishing to run for statewide office.
The lieutenant governor rejected Anderson’s petition because a small portion of the signatures were “e-signatures.” The lieutenant governor argued that those were not “signatures” under Utah state law.
Without those e-signatures, Anderson’s nomination fell short of the mandatory 1,000 signatures, according to the state Supreme Court’s ruling.
The justices further ruled that the state’s lieutenant governor “exceeded the bounds of discretion granted to him as the state’s chief election officer when he excised the electronic signatures attached to Anderson’s certificate of nomination.”
The state’s highest court instructed the lieutenant governor to recount the signatures submitted by Anderson to determine if he has satisfied the requirements of state election law on whether he qualifies for the ballot.
The court’s opinion, the first of its kind nationwide, has the potential to increase significantly the ability of independent candidates to access the general election ballot, and thus to increase the opportunity for minority viewpoints to be heard and considered in election years, said the Utah Chapter of the American Civil Liberties Union.
“This case raises substantial issues of statutory and constitutional law that affect not just every Utahan, but also every voter nationwide,” said ACLU of Utah Legal Director Darcy M. Goddard. “We are pleased that the Court understood and upheld the validity of e-signatures under both statutory and common law. Mr. Anderson’s case is an important step towards increasing participatory democracy in this country through the use of new technology.”
“Since the earliest days of the common law, a ‘signature’ was any mark that the signing individual intended to be his ‘signature,’” said ACLU cooperating attorney Brent V. Manning. “That was true whether the mark was on paper, on wood, on a wall, or on a cow.”
According to Manning, an e-signature is equally valid so long as the signer intends it to be his signature. “Utah’s legislature and courts already recognized the legitimacy of e-signatures in a variety of contexts,” said Manning. “We are gratified that the Supreme Court rejected the lieutenant governor’s attempt effectively to re-write existing law by seeking to impose additional and unconstitutional requirements for independent candidates to access the ballot.”
Bell was a lawyer before assuming the post of lieutenant governor.
In another legal matter, the issue of cloud computing is being considered by some state officials. For instance, the North Carolina State Bar has issued a preliminary opinion that it is ethical for attorneys to use Software-as-a-Service products if “reasonable care” is taken to minimize risks to the “confidentiality and to the security of client information and client files.”

Ed Silverstein is a contributing editor for TMCnet’s InfoTech Spotlight. To read more of his articles, please visit his columnist page.

Edited by Juliana Kenny

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Fed Suggests Low Rates until 2012

June 15th, 2010 No comments

June 14, 2010-NY Times
Fed Study Suggests Rates Will Stay at Record Lows Until ’12
By SEWELL CHAN
WASHINGTON — Given high unemployment and low inflation, the Federal Reserve is likely to wait until 2012 before it starts to raise interest rates, a new Fed research paper states.

The paper, released Monday by the Federal Reserve Bank of San Francisco, does not represent the official position of the central bank, whose governors have declined to specify when they might begin to raise rates. The benchmark short-term interest rate, known as the federal funds rate, has been essentially zero since December 2008, and most economists estimate that the Fed will increase it earlier than 2012.

But the paper, by Glenn D. Rudebusch, a senior vice president and associate director of research at the San Francisco Fed, is notable for its plainspoken conclusion. It could carry added significance because Janet L. Yellen, the president of the San Francisco Fed, is President Obama’s nominee to be vice chairwoman of the central bank.

“Fed staff economists rarely come so close to making specific forecasts of — or recommendations for — monetary policy, but I suspect Glenn’s views are shared by many others on the staff,” said Joseph E. Gagnon, a former Fed economist and now a senior fellow at the Peterson Institute for International Economics.

Mr. Rudebusch concluded from Fed decisions over the last two decades that there was a statistical relationship between core consumer price inflation and the gap between actual unemployment and the natural, or normal, rate of unemployment.

Given that relationship, as the recession worsened and inflation slowed in 2009, the Fed in theory should have lowered the federal funds rate by another 5 percent, Mr. Rudebusch wrote. In reality, since the Fed had already hit what it calls the “zero lower bound,” this was impossible; the central bank left its target range for the fed funds rate at zero to 0.25 percent.

“To deliver future monetary stimulus consistent with the past— and ignoring the zero lower bound — the funds rate would be negative until late 2012,” Mr. Rudebusch wrote. “In practice, this suggests little need to raise the funds rate target above its zero lower bound anytime soon.”

Mr. Rudebusch sought to address several objections, so far voiced by a minority of Fed policy makers, to keeping the federal funds rate near zero.

If the rate were raised too soon, it would be hard to reverse course, whereas if tightening is started too late, the Fed could catch up by raising rates at a rapid pace, he argued.

And while a few Fed officials have argued that extraordinarily low interest rates could lead to new price bubbles, or excessive leverage and speculation by banks, Mr. Rudebusch argued that the relationship between short-term interest rates and financial imbalances was “quite erratic and poorly understood,” noting that Japan had very low interest rates for about 15 years without those problems.

In addition, Mr. Rudebusch said the federal funds rate was less central than in the past because the Fed has been buying mortgage bonds and Treasury securities to hold down long-term rates.

“Changes in long-term interest rates have much larger effects on the economy than equal-sized changes in short-term interest rates,” he wrote.

Assuming that the Fed holds onto the roughly $2 trillion in mortgage-backed securities and Treasury debt on its books, the Fed would not need to start raising rates until the beginning of 2012, he wrote.

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June 2010 Recognized as ‘National e-Sign Awareness Month’

June 8th, 2010 No comments

Settleware Secure Services, Inc. recognizes June as “National e-Sign Awareness Month” in celebration of the 10th Anniversary of the passage of the US Electronic Signatures in Global and National Commerce Act and in an effort to increase awareness of the many benefits of e-Signatures. Businesses using Settleware’s eSigning platform share their reasons to celebrate.

(Vocus/PRWEB ) June 8, 2010 — Settleware Secure Services, Inc. recognizes June as “National e-Sign Awareness Month” in celebration of the 10th Anniversary of the passage of the U.S. Electronic Signatures in Global and National Commerce Act and in an effort to increase awareness of the many benefits of e-Signatures.

On June 30, 2000, President Bill Clinton ‘inked’ the E-Sign Act, one of the most significant pieces of legislation in the world, into law. “The E-Sign Act granted electronic signatures the same legal weight in a court of law, when affixed to contracts and agreements, as wet-signed originals,” stated Settleware’s President, CEO and Founder, C. Richard Triola. “After 10 years of validation, we are starting to see acceptance and adoption.”

“I liken it to the ATM machine,” Triola continued. “The ATM machine took only 17 years for mass adoption of usage so I see we are now rounding 2nd base with e-Signing and reaching the tipping point.”

Embraced today by large institutions, including the U.S. patent office, County Recorders, Secretaries of State, Fannie Mae, FHA and Wells Fargo, the benefits of streamlining processes and eliminating the need to legally execute a contract with ‘pen on paper’ are also of enormous benefit to small to medium size businesses. Of all the technologies available to us in the 21st century, electronic signatures have notably had the most profound impact on business, the environment and our economy, giving businesses of all sizes reason to celebrate.

E-Signing’s single point of usability eliminates the need for couriers, printers, fax machines, paper, pens and is an aid in moving along the dollar more expeditiously during the normal business transaction.

“Bottom line,” says successful entrepreneur and real estate broker Lillian Walker, “e-Signing is quickly becoming THE de facto standard of doing business. Our entire office has used Settleware’s e-Sign platform for two years. I can honestly say that this has changed the way we do business, for the better, forever. We couldn’t, as an example, imagine doing business these days without a cell phone or email. My office rates Settleware’s e-Signatures right up there as an absolute essential!”

Throughout the entire month of June, Settleware and its ExpressDox division will be advancing the benefits of e-Signatures with special events and promotions. Join the celebration! Join Settleware on Facebook this month and see why businesses using Settleware’s e-Signing platform have reason to celebrate and recognize June as “National e-Sign Awareness Month.”

About Settleware’s ExpressDox

Since 1999, Settleware has been the leading provider of secure and compliant electronic workflow solutions, enhanced by e-Signatures and ExpressDox. With the ExpressDox ‘48 hour Go Live’ promise (no installations or downloads required), an entire office can process and legally bind transactions in minutes.

The intelligence around the ExpressDox process is almost as valuable as the documents it binds. Join Settleware’s thousands of satisfied ExpressDox users and take ExpressDox for a free test drive.

About Settleware®

With offices in Orange County, Calif. and Raleigh, NC, Settleware Secure Services, Inc. has been working to facilitate electronic and paperless real estate/mortgage transactions since 1999. The leading provider of e-Signatures, e-Notarization and e-Recording workflow to the Mortgage/Real Estate/Mortgage Industry, the company’s innovative workflow meets guidelines set by the E-Sign Act and UETA and supports both MISMO SMART Doc® and e-Signed PDF standards.

Settleware offers a secure signing solution that provides document tamper sealing, roles and permissions access and secure digital encryption algorithms that can authenticate the source of a digital signature as “valid” while providing one of the Industry’s first certified e-Vaults.

The company’s low-cost and patented web-based solution seamlessly connects all parties to the real estate or mortgage transaction, is vendor neutral and is offered as an affordable Software as a Service (SaaS) subscription basis.

For more information about Settleware, visit the company’s website, Settleware Secure Services, Inc.

Media Contact: Cayce Lee | Email: pr@settleware.com

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