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News Now

Washington
Frank to FHFA Go after mortgage market abusers
WASHINGTON (8/23/10)--The Federal Housing Finance Agency (FHFA) has “the power to pursue legal claims” against private firms that shifted their losses onto Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac, and should "use this power aggressively,” Rep. Barney Frank (D-Mass.) said on Friday. In a letter to President Barack Obama, Frank said that while some of the $150 billion in losses suffered by Fannie and Freddie were due to “honest but flawed” business decisions, “some of these losses result from deception.” Rep. Paul Kanjorski (D-Pa.), along with Reps. Brad Miller (D-N.C.) and Jackie Speier (D-Calif.), expressed similar sentiments in an Aug. 13 letter to President Obama. Deals in which private companies created “private profits at public expense” should “be fought with every tool at the companies’ and the agency’s disposal,” Frank said. “These deals must not be allowed to get lost in the shuffle,” he added. Frank and Kanjorski have scheduled a slate of housing finance hearings for September, and the administration held its own hearing on that topic last week. (See related News Now story: "Treasury outlines administration's critical housing issues," Aug. 18)


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