Statement by FHFA's Division of Housing Mission and Goals

Investor Update: On July 23, the Federal Housing Finance Agency (FHFA) released a statement from Sandra Thompson, deputy director for the Division of Housing Mission and Goals, before the U.S. Senate Committee on Banking, Housing, and Urban Affairs, titled Creating a Housing Finance System Built to Last: Ensuring Access for Community Institutions.

Creating a Housing Finance System Built to Last: Ensuring Access for Community Institutions

Chairman Tester, Ranking Member Johanns and members of the Committee, my name
is Sandra Thompson and I am the Deputy Director for Housing Mission and Goals for the
Federal Housing Finance Agency (FHFA). Thank you for the opportunity to appear
before you today to discuss the important role that community-based financial institutions
play in the nation’s housing finance system.

As you know, FHFA regulates Fannie Mae, Freddie Mac (the Enterprises) and the 12
Federal Home Loan Banks. Combined, these institutions support over $5.5 trillion in
mortgage assets nationwide. FHFA has also served as the conservator for Fannie Mae
and Freddie Mac for close to five years now. We take this responsibility very seriously
and have focused on our statutory mandate to ensure the Enterprises operate in a safe
and sound manner while preserving and conserving their assets.

Before joining FHFA in March, 2013, I spent 23 years with the Federal Deposit
Insurance Corporation (FDIC), most recently as Director of the Division of Risk
Management Supervision. In this capacity, I was responsible for all aspects of
FDIC’s risk management examination activities for approximately 4,500 FDICsupervised
institutions nationwide, overseeing a distributed workforce of employees
deployed in six regional offices and 84 field offices across the country.

At the FDIC, I was involved in several outreach efforts designed to understand the vital
role that community bankers play not only in their local communities, but also in the
overall economy. Engaging in regional roundtable discussions and other forums,
provided valuable insight from community bankers, their trade organizations and state
banking commissioners about the challenges and opportunities they encounter in the
banking industry.

In a similar manner, FHFA is committed to undertaking outreach efforts to better
understand the activities of community-based financial institutions in the housing finance
industry. As discussed later in my testimony, we are meeting with community bankers,
credit unions, mortgage bankers and trade associations to help us better understand their
access to and interaction with the secondary mortgage markets. Since joining FHFA I
have participated in one meeting so far, and what is clear is -- without access to liquidity,
many community-based lenders could not be active in the primary market.

In my testimony today, I would like to make the following points:

  • Community-based financial institutions play an important role in the provision of
    housing credit;
  • During conservatorship, FHFA has taken meaningful steps to ensure community-based lenders have equal access to the secondary market; and
  • It is vital to ensure that community-based institutions have the ability to fully participate in the housing finance system of the future.

To view the statement in its entirety, please click here.

 

About Safeguard 
Safeguard Properties is the largest mortgage field services company in the U.S. Founded in 1990 by Robert Klein and based in Valley View, Ohio, the company inspects and maintains defaulted and foreclosed properties for mortgage servicers, lenders,  and other financial institutions. Safeguard employs approximately 1,700 people, in addition to a network of thousands of contractors nationally. Website: www.safeguardproperties.com.

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