Washington, D.C (Oct. 3, 2017)—Independent Community Bankers of America® (ICBA) President and CEO Camden R. Fine issued the following statement on today’s congressional testimony from Federal Housing Finance Agency Director Melvin Watt.
“ICBA is encouraged by FHFA Director Mel Watt’s statement that the agency is considering actions to prevent Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac from having to take a draw from the U.S. Treasury. ICBA and the nation’s community banks urge Director Watt to avert a taxpayer-funded draw by one or both government-sponsored enterprises by directing them to retain their earnings to build a capital buffer.
“Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac are critical providers of liquidity in the secondary mortgage market for community banks and other lenders, large and small. Director Watt’s concern with the possible negative market reaction to a Treasury draw is well-founded. As the GSEs’ safety and soundness regulator, Director Watt should take all necessary steps to prevent another taxpayer bailout.”