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Thursday, February 7, 2008

Government-Sponsored Enterprises' debt may pose risk to economy

February 07 2008
The housing slump has compelled Freddie Mac and Fannie Mae to buy up mortgages on the secondary market that banks are backing away from. But that could end badly, charges one regulator. The increased share of housing debt taken on by Freddie Mac and Fannie Mae during the housing slump has put the two government sponsored enterprises at risk. The two Government-Sponsored Enterprises are "reducing risks in the market, but concentrating mortgages risks on themselves. These risks are beginning to take their toll," said James Lockhart, director of the Office of Federal Housing Enterprise Oversight (OFHEO), which regulates Fannie and Freddie. He was speaking Thursday at a Senate Banking committee on regulatory reform.

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