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Assured Guaranty, JPMorgan Agree to End Mortgage Suits

Assured Guaranty Ltd. and JPMorgan Chase & Co. agreed to settle lawsuits filed by the bond insurer accusing the bank’s EMC Mortgage and Bear Stearns units of making misrepresentations about mortgage-backed securities.

Assured Guaranty Corp., a New York-based unit of the Hamilton, Bermuda-based bond insurer, sued EMC, J.P. Morgan Securities Inc. and JPMorgan Chase Bank NA in state and federal court in New York starting in 2010, alleging violations of representations and warranties in connection with three residential mortgage-backed securities transactions.

JPMorgan and Assured reached an agreement resolving the claims this month, according to a filing with the U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission dated Aug. 9. Terms of the settlement weren’t disclosed in the filing.

Assured still has similar suits pending against other lenders, including Deutsche Bank AG, Germany’s biggest lender, and Credit Suisse AG, Switzerland’s largest bank, according to its SEC filing.

Pools of home loans securitized into bonds were a central part of the housing bubble that helped send the U.S. into the biggest recession since the 1930s. The housing market collapsed, and the crisis swept up lenders and investment banks as the market for the securities evaporated.

Ashweeta Durani, a spokeswoman for Assured Guaranty in New York, said in a telephone interview that she couldn’t comment beyond the regulatory filing. Jennifer Zuccarelli, a spokeswoman for New York-based JPMorgan, didn’t immediately respond to an e-mail seeking comment.

The state court case is Assured Guaranty Corp. v. EMC Mortgage LLC, 650805/2012, New York State Supreme Court, New York County (Manhattan.)

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