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Texas Republican Congressman Jeb Hensarling said Wednesday that Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac need to be wound down as part of any sustainable housing finance reform.
Speaking at a conference on the future of the U.S. housing market, Hensarling said he would work towards a bipartisan package of reforms aimed at putting the U.S. housing finance system on a more stable foundation, but this must include winding down and eliminating the government supported housing finance giants. Hensarling chairs the House Financial Services Committee which oversees housing finance.
Fannie - Freddie - Charters - Plan - Deja
“Fannie and Freddie must be wound down and their charters repealed. I fear any plan to recap and release may very well constitute deja vu all over again,” Hensarling said.
Fannie and Freddie do not make mortgage loans. They purchase loans and repackage them as securities wrapped with a guarantee. Both companies were swept into conservatorship in 2008 when regulators feared they were on the precipice of collapse, with the U.S. Treasury eventually injecting $187.5 billion of bailout money to keep them afloat. The companies have since returned to profitability and now pay all of their profits to the Treasury, which still supports the companies with a promise that their bailout can stretch to $400 billion if needed.
Shareholders - Companies - Hedge - Funds - Money
Some shareholders of the two companies, led by hedge funds and other large money managers, have attempted to convince lawmakers and regulators that the companies should be allowed to keep their profits to recapitalize and be released from conservatorship. Shareholders have also sued in courts, although a series of losses at both the state and federal level have made it clear that courts will not undo the government’s hold on the two companies.
Lobbyists and influence-peddlers have also waged a campaign of propaganda to try to convince liberals and conservatives to support the cause of the hedge funds,...
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