When: Thursday, August 23rd at 4:00 PM ET
Where: "Closing Bell with Maria Bartiromo" (M-F 4PM-5PM ET)
The following is the unofficial transcript of Part 2 of CNBC's exclusive interview with Countrywide CEO Angelo Mozilo on CNBC's "Closing Bell with Maria Bartiromo" today at 4:00 PM ET. All references must be sourced to CNBC's "Closing Bell with Maria Bartiromo."
In an exclusive interview with CNBC's Maria Bartiromo, Countrywide CEO Angelo Mozilo discusses Bank of America's $2 billion investment in Countrywide, problems in the mortgage industry and Countrywide's strategy going forward, among other topics.
Interview: Angelo Mozilo, CEO Countrywide (2nd interview, 8/23)
Mr. ANGELO MOZILO: OK.
BARTIROMO: OK. Can you characterize the environment for us? Where are we right now in the credit crunch?
Mr. MOZILO: I think it's hard to tell exactly where you are. You know, you're sort of in the middle of a jungle, but you don't know if you're halfway through, at the end of it, at the beginning of it. And it just seems to me that we're headed in a better direction than we just came from. I just have that feeling because, one, the market has shrunk. A lot of the players are gone that were here before. Everybody's gotten the message you can't make these loans anymore, even though we tried to make them. So I think from a mortgage point of view, from...(unintelligible)...point of view, we're in a much better place than we were from a lot of perspectives. But from the country's point of view, I don't think we're in a better place. I think that, again, values of real estate continue to go down, delinquencies continue to rise because there's no liquidity. So I think the key to turning that around is creating liquidity in the marketplace for all levels of home buyers, but particularly for first-time home buyers because they drive the values of the rest of the chain.
BARTIROMO: So what does your book tell us right now? The delinquencies are rising, are we seeing that accelerate, defaults rising? Tell me what you're seeing and what's the next shoe to drop? Is it the ratings agencies downgrading?
Mr. MOZILO: Yeah. Well, we've been through that, so I mean, Countrywide, yeah, we've been through that already. And, no, I think that, yeah, we've seen a rise of rates, but I think it's going--to put it in perspective, rise of delinquencies and foreclosures, it was zero. We started from zero because values were going up so quickly, no one went into delinquency. If they did, they sold and got their money back. So were virtually almost at a zero base. So it is was distorted now in that regard. But it is--it has been rising. The pace that it has been rising has slowed down. And so I think that--I wouldn't say we've peaked out, but I think you're going to see the pace of rise slow down over the next year or so.