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Inside Washington (09/23/2011)
* WASHINGTON (9/26/11)--The percentage of refinanced mortgages in the U.S. sold to Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac is greater than previously estimated, according to a report released Thursday by the Federal Reserve Board. The report presented findings from a review of data that mortgage lending institutions reported for 2010 under the Home Mortgage Disclosure Act. About 55% of owner occupied homes refinanced in 2010 were sold to the government-sponsored enterprises (GSEs), an increase from the central bank’s original estimate of 39.6% earlier this year. Initial estimates fell short because mortgages guaranteed by Fannie and Freddie are identified that way only if they are sold directly to the GSEs or placed in a pool during the same year as origination. Therefore, loans originated in the fourth quarter and later sold were not originally included … * WASHINGTON (9/26/11)--The Federal Housing Finance Agency’s (FHFA) Office of the Inspector General (OIG) in a report found significant faults in the agency’s handling of Fannie Mae, saying last week that the FHFA failed to force Fannie Mae to establish “an acceptable and effective operational risk management program despite outstanding requirements to do so.” The FHFA also did not use its broad authority over the government-sponsored entity to “compel Fannie Mae to create and administer an operational risk management program.” The OIG warned that the FHFA “must exercise maximum diligence and take forceful action” to ensure that Fannie Mae properly monitors its own risks. “Otherwise, FHFA’s safety and soundness examination program, as well as its delegated approach to conservatorship management, may be adversely affected,” the OIG said. A separate OIG analysis found faults in the FHFA’s examination coverage, “particularly in the areas of Real Estate Owned and default-related legal services,” and also noted that the agency lacks the examiners needed “to ensure the efficiency and effectiveness of its examination program ...”

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