How much banks should pay for alleged improprieties and how that money should be used has been an issue in the talks. Banks have said they are willing to pay a settlement of $5 billion, according to Bloomberg News, while government officials have pushed for a settlement of as much as $25 billion, according to Times reporting.
Donovan said a $5-billion settlement was “unacceptable” but didn't give a dollar figure that would be acceptable. He added that his office as well as those of other federal agencies and attorneys general had uncovered evidence of a widespread problems in dealing with foreclosures and borrowers in default.
“There were a large number of homeowners who weren’t given the opportunity to stay in their homes,” he said.
[Updated at 6:42 p.m.: A spokesman for Iowa Atty. Gen. Tom Miller, a Democrat who is leading the negotiations for the states, said Miller hoped for a quick settlement but would not confirm a set deadline.
“While we certainly hope we can reach a settlement in a matter of weeks, we don’t know how long it will take,” Geoff Greenwood, the spokesman, said. “We are trying to work through some very complicated issues, and we want to make sure to get it right.”
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