Posted on Tuesday, February 2, 2010
The Federal Housing Finance Agency (FHFA) was created on July 30, 2008, when the President signed into law the Housing and Economic Recovery Act of 2008. The Act created a world-class, empowered regulator with all of the authorities necessary to oversee vital components of our country’s secondary mortgage markets – Fannie Mae, Freddie Mac, and the Federal Home Loan Banks. In addition, this law combined the staffs of the Office of Federal Housing Enterprise Oversight (OFHEO), the Federal Housing Finance Board (FHFB), and the GSE mission office at the Department of Housing and Urban Development (HUD). With a very turbulent market facing our nation, the strengthening of the regulatory and supervisory oversight of the 14 housing-related GSEs is imperative. The establishment of FHFA will promote a stronger, safer U.S. housing finance system. As of June 2008, the combined debt and obligations of these GSEs totaled $6.6 trillion, exceeding the total publicly held debt of the USA by $1.3 trillion. The GSEs also purchased or guaranteed 84% of new mortgages. Considering the impact of these GSEs on the U.S. economy and mortgage market, it is critical that we intensify our focus on oversight of Fannie Mae, Freddie Mac, and the Federal Home Loan Banks.
FHFA is comprised of combined staffs of the former Office of Federal Housing Enterprise Oversight (OFHEO), the former Federal Housing Finance Board (FHFB), and the GSE mission office at the Department of Housing and Urban Development (HUD).
Office of Federal Housing Enterprise Oversight (OFHEO)
OFHEO's mission was to promote housing and a strong national housing finance system by ensuring the safety and soundness of Fannie Mae (Federal National Mortgage Association) and Freddie Mac (Federal Home Loan Mortgage Corporation).
Federal Housing Finance Board (FHFB)
The Federal Housing Finance Board regulated the 12 FHLBanks that were created in 1932 to improve the supply of funds to local lenders that, in turn, finance loans for home mortgages. The board also had regulatory authority and supervisory oversight responsibility for the Office of Finance.
US Department of Housing and Urban Development (HUD)
HUD's mission is to increase homeownership, support community development and increase access to affordable housing free from discrimination.