U.S. gov't pushes for comprehensive housing finance reform

08:45, July 28, 2010      

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U.S. President Barack Obama makes remarks on the Senate campaign finance reform vote in the Rose Garden at the White House in Washington July 26, 2010. (Xinhua/Reuters Photo)

The U.S. Treasury Department said on Tuesday that the Obama administration will work to address the problems of troubled mortgage giants Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac through a comprehensive housing finance reform.

"The administration continues its work developing a comprehensive housing finance reform proposal for delivery to Congress by January 2011," the Treasury Department said in a statement.

The core of the reform is to transform Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac, which collectively own or guarantee trillions of dollars worth of mortgage-backed securities, and account for almost three quarters of the sector.

The Treasury Department has poured 84 billion dollars into Fannie Mae and 61 billion dollars into Freddie Mac to keep them afloat during the financial crisis, but the two companies have still been reporting huge losses. They were delisted from the New York Stock Exchange earlier this month for weak stock prices.

"The Obama Administration is committed to delivering a comprehensive reform proposal that protects taxpayers, institutes tough oversight, restores the long-term health of our housing market, and strengthens our nation's economic recovery," said Treasury Secretary Tim Geithner.

"The Obama Administration is committed to engaging stakeholders and the public as we consider proposals for reforming the housing finance system," said Housing and Urban Development Secretary Shaun Donovan.

The administration will hold a variety of events to "gather input from a broad cross-section of stakeholders," including a Conference on the Future of Housing Finance in Washington D.C. on Aug. 17, said the statement.



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