Market Movers Monday: Treasury gives FAN/FRED ticket to ride, China will not revalue yuan
When last we visited with FAN/FRED they were facing skyrocketing default rates and had exponentially increased their book, they and FHA being the last purchasers of MBS loans standing (aside from the Federal Reserve which will stop its MBS purchases in March).
…Washington-based Fannie Mae and McLean, Virginia-based Freddie Mac own or guarantee about $5.5 trillion of the $11.8 trillion in U.S. residential mortgage debt. They have financed as much as 75 percent of new U.S. mortgages this year.
They have been run for more than 40 years as shareholder- owned companies that also have a federally chartered mission to promote the housing market. Those dual mandates have collided and contributed to the companies’ failure, said Federal Deposit Insurance Corp. Chairman Sheila Bair.
“Go one way or the other,” Bair said in an interview this month. “Either completely privatize them and get them completely out or run them as public utilities.” The hybrid structure, with private shareholders, public mandates and federal backstopping, “is classic too big to fail.”…
FAN/FRED/FHA are now the owners of all these loans. But they are not modifying them. The default rates are rising with unemployment. So what did Team Obama do? Did they talk to FAN FRED FHA about doing meaningful mods to keep families in their homes?
Of course not! They lifted the cap off the lines of credit these GSE’s have with Treasury. Did they raise it to the requested 400 Billion a piece?
Of course not! That would be CRAZY!
They eliminated the cap completely instead!!!, giving these monstrous entities an UNLIMITED LINE OF TAXPAYER FUNDS FOR THE NEXT 3 YEARS.
Gee what else lasts the next 3 years? Oh yeah the Obama Presidency.
…The Treasury on Dec. 24 said it would provide an unlimited amount of assistance to the companies as needed for the next three years to alleviate market concern that the $400 billion lifeline for Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac could lapse or be exhausted. The companies, the largest source of money for U.S. home loans, were seized by the government in September 2008 as their losses threatened to further disrupt the housing market.
The Treasury also relaxed its timeline for Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac to shrink their portfolio of retained mortgages. Previously, the companies were instructed to shrink their portfolios at a rate of 10 percent a year. Now, they will be required to keep their portfolios below a maximum limit, currently $900 billion, that will fall by 10 percent a year.
Washington-based Fannie Mae, which has lost $120.5 billion over the past nine quarters, has requested $60.9 billion from the Treasury this year. McLean, Virginia-based Freddie Mac has tapped $50.7 billion in government capital since November 2008 and recorded $67.9 billion in losses over nine quarters….
In other news, Obama’s ‘tough talk’ with China in Asia and Copenhagen really had an impact. NOT! Wen Jiabao made it clear China will NOT revalue the yuan to save Asia from the collapsing US Dollar. These guys are playing chicken with the global economy. I am confident China, which HAS to grow to maintain its grip on the billions of people it governs, will stick to its guns and Timmeh Geithner and Obama will bow to the reality. As HRC said during the primaries you do not argue with your banker, and Obama has ensured with his out of control spending that China will be our banker for the foreseeable future.
Prime Minister Wen Jiabao of China struck a defiant note yesterday about the country’s exchange rate policy, saying the government would not give in to foreign demands that it let the yuan rise in value.Wen said in an interview with Xinhua, the official Chinese news agency, that the currency was facing growing pressure to appreciate, but he insisted that China was committed to keeping it stable, having virtually pegged it to the dollar since the global financial crisis worsened in the middle of last year.
“We will not yield to any pressure of any form forcing us to appreciate,” he said. “As I have told my foreign friends, on one hand, you are asking for the yuan to appreciate, and on the other hand, you are taking all kinds of protectionist measures.”
The true purpose of these calls is to contain China’s development, the prime minister said.
The yuan has fallen against the currencies of most of China’s trading partners this year because it has been fixed to the weakening dollar, while China’s economy has bounced back strongly….