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Fannie Mae: Brother Can You Spare $4.6 Billion?

By Doug Powers  •  February 29, 2012 01:58 PM

**Written by Doug Powers

“These two entities — Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac — are not facing any kind of financial crisis.” … “I want to roll the dice a little bit more in this situation towards subsidized housing.” — Rep. Barney Frank, 2003

Maybe it’s a good thing Wall Street Reform and Consumer Protection Act didn’t lay a glove on Fannie Mae, because if Dodd-Frank had tried to “fix” it, Fannie would probably be back asking for even more money than they already are:

Fannie Mae will request another $4.6 billion in US government aid after posting a $2.41 billion loss in the fourth quarter, the mortgage finance company said Wednesday.

The company also warned it could be required to request additional aid stemming from an escalating battle with Bank of America over mortgage-repurchase requests.

Fannie Mae blamed its quarterly loss primarily on pre-2009 loans and declines in home prices, which pushed up the company’s credit-related expenses.
Including its most recent request from the US Treasury Department, Fannie Mae has borrowed more than $116 billion from taxpayers and paid back $19.6 billion in dividends. The net cost to taxpayers for the bailouts of both companies stands at more than $152 billion.

The loss is reported from the same quarter that the Federal Housing Finance Agency approved $6.3 million in bonuses for Fannie’s top five officers.

In other economic news, prepare for possible stimulus from the Fed (h/t Michelle via Twitter):

Bernanke said the job market is still “far from normal” and may require the Fed to launch more stimulus measures, in his semi-annual monetary policy report to Congress.

Bernanke also added rising gasoline prices will likely push up inflation temporarily, while reducing consumers’ purchasing power.

That is until the algae-mobiles go on sale, then happy days will be here again!

**Written by Doug Powers

Twitter @ThePowersThatBe

Posted in: Subprime crisis