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FHFA Sets Rules for Bulk Loan Sales

Monday, March 2, 2015

The Federal Housing Finance Agency (FHFA), conservator of Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac (the GSEs), released guidelines for their sales of non-performing mortgage loans.  FHFA earlier approved sales as a mechanism to reduce the investment portfolios of the two enterprises and to transfer some of the risk of their delinquent loans to the private sector.    FHFA said it believes that the sale of severely delinquent loans through non-performing loan (NPL) sales will both reduce GSE losses and improve borrower and neighborhood outcomes. 

Bulk sales of delinquent debt is done on a substantially discounted basis and in the case of secured debt investors generally bid on the basis of the value of the underlying collateral. With rising home prices the attractiveness of such debt has increased as has demand for it and there has been concern that investors will fast-track foreclosures once they own the debt. 

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