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Report: Lenders blacklisted appraisers

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A nonprofit that specializes in investigative journalism says it's obtained copies of blacklists that lenders used during the housing boom to boycott thousands of appraisers who refused to inflate home values. In a story examining the role of appraisals in the housing boom and bust, the Center for Public Integrity says it also found many appraisers who bowed to pressure from lenders to "hit the numbers." The practice "helped pump air into the housing bubble that led to widespread economic devastation," the story concludes. Online mortgage lender Amerisave maintained a list of nearly 12,000 "ineligible" appraisers that was available on the company's Web site until the Center inquired about it, the story said. Amerisave declined to comment for the story, "The Appraisal Bubble." The story also details New York Attorney General Andrew Cuomo's lawsuit against First American Corp., which claims First American's appraisal management compan...