Author Topic: FNMA and FMCC preferreds. In search of the elusive 10 bagger.  (Read 2941960 times)

cherzeca

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Re: FNMA and FMCC preferreds. In search of the elusive 10 bagger.
« Reply #11200 on: January 11, 2019, 05:52:00 PM »
how so Luke?

Otting evaluating FHFA's position makes it possible (I'd say highly probable) that FHFA's position will change in a meaningful way.

maybe yes, maybe no.  remember, this is Otting's filing on behalf of FHFA, not the lawyers representing fhfa.  Otting may simply have asked fhfa lawyers for a look at the brief being submitted in his name as acting director, and the lawyers may have said, ahem, it is due today, and Otting simply said get an extension so I can at least read it over the weekend.

I expect there will not be any changes.  while I think Otting will have an effect on fhfa, I doubt it will be by red pencilling this brief.

edit: another reason I don't expect any change is that argument is in only 2 weeks, and the court en banc was insistent that filing deadlines be met...so that the extension could be only for the weekend and another will likely not be granted.  I don't know that Otting can read this brief, talk to his lawyers and get lawyers to change brief in 48 hours...happens all the time on Wall Street but much less in DC
« Last Edit: January 11, 2019, 06:05:23 PM by cherzeca »


emily

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Re: FNMA and FMCC preferreds. In search of the elusive 10 bagger.
« Reply #11201 on: January 11, 2019, 06:02:12 PM »
Why have both preferreds and commons (especially FNMAS, FMCKJ) moved much higher after so much news? What else is market waiting for?

Luke 5:32

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Re: FNMA and FMCC preferreds. In search of the elusive 10 bagger.
« Reply #11202 on: January 11, 2019, 06:04:49 PM »
how so Luke?

Otting evaluating FHFA's position makes it possible (I'd say highly probable) that FHFA's position will change in a meaningful way.

maybe yes, maybe no.  remember, this is Otting's filing on behalf of FHFA, not the lawyers representing fhfa.  Otting may simply have asked fhfa lawyers for a look at the brief being submitted in his name as acting director, and the lawyers may have said, ahem, it is due today, and Otting simply said get an extension so I can at least read it over the weekend.

I expect there will not be any changes.  while I think Otting will have an effect on fhfa, I doubt it will be by red pencilling this brief.

ValueMaven, I recommend placing infinitely more weight on cherzeca's (Christian) comments than mine when it comes to legal matters.  That is definitely not an area of expertise for me, and it certainly is for Christian. 
Invest for retirement?  Sure.  But investing in eternity is infinitely more important.  Don't get it twisted.  "...but lay up for yourselves treasures in heaven, where neither moth nor rust destroys and where thieves do not break in and steal."  Matthew 6:20

cherzeca

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Re: FNMA and FMCC preferreds. In search of the elusive 10 bagger.
« Reply #11203 on: January 11, 2019, 06:17:30 PM »
as I posted a bit earlier, I doubt this will result in a meeker fhfa brief.  but I am sure this has fhfa counsel (Arnold & porter) shitting in their pants.  all prior briefs were likely delivered on a courtesy copy basis to watt who never read them.  they sent over a courtesy copy this time to Otting and Otting asked how long do I have to read this.  and counsel said, excuse me, you want to read it? and Otting said, of course, it is being filed under my name as acting director. then counsel said, gee, well, um, it is due today.  and then Otting likely ripped counsel a new one.

maybe this happened, maybe it didn't. but if I were a betting man....

SnarkyPuppy

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Re: FNMA and FMCC preferreds. In search of the elusive 10 bagger.
« Reply #11204 on: January 12, 2019, 10:28:48 AM »
Going through older articles to try to piece together likely outcomes.  Writing on the wall. 

Calabria/Pollock 2015:
https://thehill.com/blogs/congress-blog/economy-budget/240014-making-a-fannie-and-freddie-we-could-live-with

What is required are practical steps forward, rather than designing the ideal but politically unachievable solution.  We offer Congress the following suggestion as something that can be done now: simply take away all Fannie and Freddie’s special privileges.  They could be allowed out of conservatorship when all of the following actions have been taken:

1. Take away Fannie and Freddie’s capital arbitrage and set their equity capital requirements in line with other financial institutions of similar size.  Equity of at least 5 percent of total assets should be their required leverage capital ratio.
2. End all their securities law exemptions.
3. End all their preferences in banking law and regulation.  Banks aren’t allowed to hold corporate equity, but as a mistaken exception were allowed to make large equity investments in Fannie and Freddie, on a highly leveraged basis.
4. End their exemption from state and local income taxes. 
5. Open up their charters to competition just like banking charters.  End their exclusive duopoly privileges.
6. End all their exemptions from consumer protection rules.
7. Designate them as the Systemically Important Financial Institutions (SIFIs) they indubitably are.

Implementing these steps would go a long way towards making Fannie and Freddie less distortive and far less dangerous, rendering them a Fannie and Freddie we could live with as two competitors among others.  Such a de-fanged, de-privileged Fannie and Freddie could safely be brought out of eternal conservatorship.  If they again get themselves into insolvency, they could be placed into receivership.  In the meantime, debates about the ideal housing finance system can continue.

Mulvaney 2016:
https://www.valuewalk.com/2016/02/fannie-mae-fincher-mulvaney-press-fhfa-treasury-on-risks-of-sweep/

It is extremely troubling that these massive agencies – deeply imbedded in our financial system with over $5 trillion in securities outstanding – are being specifically directed to deplete their capital reserves.  According to the 2013 FHFA report, four out of five mortgages are now backed by Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac, which is a level higher than before the crisis. Should a sudden shock to the system or even a normal downturn occur, it is American taxpayers that will have to fit the bill.

The letter also echoed an idea that housing policy experts from across the political spectrum have backed: Treat Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac like systemically-important financial institutions, or SIFIs.

Mulvaney 2016
The Housing Finance Restructuring Act of 2016
https://www.congress.gov/bill/114th-congress/house-bill/4913/text

Key sections:
"(1) DEEMED REPAYMENT IN FULL.—Effective on the date of the date of the enactment of this Act, the liquidation preference on the Variable Liquidation Preference Senior Preferred Stocks of each enterprise is reduced to zero."

(c) Exercise Of Warrants For Common Stock.—Notwithstanding subsection (a)(2)(C) of this section, upon the enactment of this Act, the Department of the Treasury shall exercise the warrants for the purchase of common stock of the enterprises provided to the Department under the Senior Preferred Stock Purchase Agreements.

(d) Capital Restoration Plan.—(1) REQUIREMENT.—Not later than the expiration of the 45-day period beginning on the date of the enactment of this Act, the Director shall prepare and submit to the Committee on Financial Services of the House of Representatives and the Committee on Banking, Housing, and Urban Affairs of the Senate a capital restoration plan for each enterprise that complies with section 1369C(a) of the Federal Housing Enterprises Financial Safety and Soundness Act of 1992 (12 U.S.C. 4622(a)).

(e) Termination Of Conservatorships.—The Director shall terminate the conservatorship of an enterprise under section 1367 of the Federal Housing Enterprises Financial Safety and Soundness Act of 1992 (12 U.S.C. 4617) at such time that the enterprise attains, as determined by the Director, an amount of capital that is equal to or exceeds 5 percent of the risk-weighted assets of the enterprise.

Pollock 2017:
https://www.americanbanker.com/opinion/time-to-reform-fannie-and-freddie-is-now
"The answer is easily determined. Take all the cash flows between Fannie and Freddie and the Treasury, and calculate the Treasury’s internal rate of return on its investment. When the IRR reaches 10%, Fannie and Freddie have sent in cash economically equivalent to paying the 10% dividend plus retiring 100% of the principal. This I call the “10% Moment.

Freddie reached its 10% Moment in the second quarter of 2017. With the $3 billion dividend Fannie was previously planning to pay on December 31, the Treasury’s IRR on Fannie would have reached 10.06%.

The new Treasury-FHFA deal will postpone Fannie’s 10% Moment a bit, but it will come. As it approaches, Treasury should exercise its warrants and become the actual owner of the shares to which it and the taxpayers are entitled. When added to that, Fannie reaches its 10% Moment, then payment in full of the original bailout deal will have been achieved, economically speaking.

Any real reform must address two essential factors. First, Fannie and Freddie are and will continue to be absolutely dependent on the de facto guarantee of their obligations by the U.S. Treasury, thus the taxpayers. They could not function even for a minute without that. The guarantee needs to be fairly paid for, as nothing is more distortive than a free government guarantee. A good way to set the necessary fee would be to mirror what the Federal Deposit Insurance Corp. would charge for deposit insurance of a huge bank with 0.1% capital and a 100% concentration in real estate risk. Treasury and Congress should ask the FDIC what this price would be.

Second, Fannie and Freddie have demonstrated their ability to put the entire financial system at risk. They are with no doubt whatsoever systemically important financial institutions. Indeed, if anyone at all is a SIFI, then it is the GSEs. If Fannie and Freddie are not SIFIs, then no one is a SIFI. They should be formally designated as such in the first quarter of 2018, by the Financial Stability Oversight Council —and that FSOC has not already so designated them is an egregious and arguably reckless failure.

When Fannie and Freddie are making a fair payment for their de facto government guarantee, have become formally designated and regulated as SIFIs, and have reached the 10% Moment,  Treasury should agree that its senior preferred stock has been fully retired.

Then Fannie and Freddie would begin to accumulate additional retained earnings in a sound framework. Of course, 79.9% of those would belong to the Treasury as 79.9% owner of their common stock. Fannie and Freddie would still be woefully undercapitalized, but progress toward building the capital appropriate for a SIFI would begin"

Mnuchin 2017
https://www.bloomberg.com/news/articles/2017-01-28/mnuchin-dims-banks-hopes-he-will-allow-a-prop-trading-revival

Additionally, Mnuchin offered further details on his thoughts regarding housing finance reform, including the role of GSEs. Mnuchin wrote in response to questions from Senator Sherrod Brown that "any solution will be dependent upon the GSEs being capitalized properly and other such controls that eliminate risk to taxpayers."

Mnuchin 2017
https://www.wsj.com/articles/trump-administration-could-support-government-backstop-for-fannie-and-freddie-mnuchin-says-1495137047
"If we end up with a scenario where we need some type of explicit guarantee, I would expect that it would be paid for and I would expect that it would hopefully never be hit,” he said. The Treasury secretary said such a system would be no different than insurance programs operated by the Federal Deposit Insurance Corp. and the Federal Housing Administration.


OMB Budget 2018 - Mulvaney
https://www.whitehouse.gov/wp-content/uploads/2018/06/Government-Reform-and-Reorg-Plan.pdf

"This proposal would reorganize the way the Federal Government delivers mortgage assistance and go beyond restructuring Federal agencies and programs by transitioning Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac to fully private entities.  Both Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac, as well as other competitive entrants, would have access to an explicit Federal guarantee for mortgage-backed securities (MBS) that they issue that is only exposed in limited, exigent circumstances. Such a guarantee would be on-budget and fully paid-for

The proposal would remove the Federal charter from statute and fully privatize the GSEs. A Federal entity with secondary mortgage market experience would be charged with regulatory oversight of the fully privatized GSEs, have the authority to approve guarantors, and develop a regulatory environment that is conducive to developing competition amongst new private guarantors and the incumbent GSEs, ensuring they would all be adequately capitalized and competing on a level playing field.

Under this proposal, which would also involve entities outside the Executive Branch of the Federal  Government, guarantors would have access to an explicit guarantee on the MBS that they issue that is only exposed in limited, exigent circumstances. Taxpayers would be protected by virtue of the capital requirements imposed on the guarantors ... The projected cost of this guarantee and other fees charged would be on-budget and accountable, resulting in reduced implicit taxpayer exposure.

Phillips 2018
https://www.housingwire.com/articles/47122-mnuchins-top-housing-advisor-says-gse-charters-should-be-removed

“The administration advocates ending the conservatorship of Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac and returning them to private ownership,” Phillips said Monday. “Their charters should be removed from statute and their operations should be overseen by the primary regulator that has the authority to approve additional guarantors to introduce competition into the secondary mortgage market   

“Guarantors should have access to an explicit federal guarantee for MBS (mortgage-backed securities) that they issue which is on budget and fully paid for, designed for use only in exigent circumstances and designed and overseen in a manner that protects the interests of taxpayers by their primary regulator,” Phillips continued..”

Mnuchin 2018
"Watt's term ends in early 2019. That will be an opportunity to “make sure we have someone in that job that supports the agenda,” Mnuchin said."

Otting 2019
Otting: ‘A lot’ can get done during acting FHFA tenure

“There’s a clear mission that’s outlined by the Treasury and the White House, what they want to accomplish,” Otting said in an interview this morning inside the building that houses both the OCC and FHFA.

“If I can move that down the rails before Mark is confirmed, there’s a lot of things I think we can get done, and then Mark could come in and continue down the path of the mission that’s been laid out,” he added.

“We have to look at the capital and liquidity requirements of the GSEs,” he said. “But by all accounts … I think the GSEs can be commended for the way they have repositioned their business models and the way they are serving the market.”

He said he was still getting his bearings in his new role, but added: “Our goal is to be able to complete the release of the GSEs but at the same time make sure that it supports the U.S. housing market.”

DRValue

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Re: FNMA and FMCC preferreds. In search of the elusive 10 bagger.
« Reply #11205 on: January 12, 2019, 10:52:12 AM »
@puppy

Valuable work thanks for sharing.
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Luke 5:32

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Re: FNMA and FMCC preferreds. In search of the elusive 10 bagger.
« Reply #11206 on: January 12, 2019, 11:10:15 AM »
@puppy

Valuable work thanks for sharing.

+1.  Very nice work!
Invest for retirement?  Sure.  But investing in eternity is infinitely more important.  Don't get it twisted.  "...but lay up for yourselves treasures in heaven, where neither moth nor rust destroys and where thieves do not break in and steal."  Matthew 6:20

rros

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Re: FNMA and FMCC preferreds. In search of the elusive 10 bagger.
« Reply #11207 on: January 12, 2019, 11:18:47 AM »
Going through older articles to try to piece together likely outcomes.  Writing on the wall. 

Calabria/Pollock 2015:
https://thehill.com/blogs/congress-blog/economy-budget/240014-making-a-fannie-and-freddie-we-could-live-with

What is required are practical steps forward, rather than designing the ideal but politically unachievable solution.  We offer Congress the following suggestion as something that can be done now: simply take away all Fannie and Freddie’s special privileges.  They could be allowed out of conservatorship when all of the following actions have been taken:

1. Take away Fannie and Freddie’s capital arbitrage and set their equity capital requirements in line with other financial institutions of similar size.  Equity of at least 5 percent of total assets should be their required leverage capital ratio.
2. End all their securities law exemptions.
3. End all their preferences in banking law and regulation.  Banks aren’t allowed to hold corporate equity, but as a mistaken exception were allowed to make large equity investments in Fannie and Freddie, on a highly leveraged basis.
4. End their exemption from state and local income taxes. 
5. Open up their charters to competition just like banking charters.  End their exclusive duopoly privileges.
6. End all their exemptions from consumer protection rules.
7. Designate them as the Systemically Important Financial Institutions (SIFIs) they indubitably are.

Implementing these steps would go a long way towards making Fannie and Freddie less distortive and far less dangerous, rendering them a Fannie and Freddie we could live with as two competitors among others.  Such a de-fanged, de-privileged Fannie and Freddie could safely be brought out of eternal conservatorship.  If they again get themselves into insolvency, they could be placed into receivership.  In the meantime, debates about the ideal housing finance system can continue.

Mulvaney 2016:
https://www.valuewalk.com/2016/02/fannie-mae-fincher-mulvaney-press-fhfa-treasury-on-risks-of-sweep/

It is extremely troubling that these massive agencies – deeply imbedded in our financial system with over $5 trillion in securities outstanding – are being specifically directed to deplete their capital reserves.  According to the 2013 FHFA report, four out of five mortgages are now backed by Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac, which is a level higher than before the crisis. Should a sudden shock to the system or even a normal downturn occur, it is American taxpayers that will have to fit the bill.

The letter also echoed an idea that housing policy experts from across the political spectrum have backed: Treat Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac like systemically-important financial institutions, or SIFIs.

Mulvaney 2016
The Housing Finance Restructuring Act of 2016
https://www.congress.gov/bill/114th-congress/house-bill/4913/text

Key sections:
"(1) DEEMED REPAYMENT IN FULL.—Effective on the date of the date of the enactment of this Act, the liquidation preference on the Variable Liquidation Preference Senior Preferred Stocks of each enterprise is reduced to zero."

(c) Exercise Of Warrants For Common Stock.—Notwithstanding subsection (a)(2)(C) of this section, upon the enactment of this Act, the Department of the Treasury shall exercise the warrants for the purchase of common stock of the enterprises provided to the Department under the Senior Preferred Stock Purchase Agreements.

(d) Capital Restoration Plan.—(1) REQUIREMENT.—Not later than the expiration of the 45-day period beginning on the date of the enactment of this Act, the Director shall prepare and submit to the Committee on Financial Services of the House of Representatives and the Committee on Banking, Housing, and Urban Affairs of the Senate a capital restoration plan for each enterprise that complies with section 1369C(a) of the Federal Housing Enterprises Financial Safety and Soundness Act of 1992 (12 U.S.C. 4622(a)).

(e) Termination Of Conservatorships.—The Director shall terminate the conservatorship of an enterprise under section 1367 of the Federal Housing Enterprises Financial Safety and Soundness Act of 1992 (12 U.S.C. 4617) at such time that the enterprise attains, as determined by the Director, an amount of capital that is equal to or exceeds 5 percent of the risk-weighted assets of the enterprise.

Pollock 2017:
https://www.americanbanker.com/opinion/time-to-reform-fannie-and-freddie-is-now
"The answer is easily determined. Take all the cash flows between Fannie and Freddie and the Treasury, and calculate the Treasury’s internal rate of return on its investment. When the IRR reaches 10%, Fannie and Freddie have sent in cash economically equivalent to paying the 10% dividend plus retiring 100% of the principal. This I call the “10% Moment.

Freddie reached its 10% Moment in the second quarter of 2017. With the $3 billion dividend Fannie was previously planning to pay on December 31, the Treasury’s IRR on Fannie would have reached 10.06%.

The new Treasury-FHFA deal will postpone Fannie’s 10% Moment a bit, but it will come. As it approaches, Treasury should exercise its warrants and become the actual owner of the shares to which it and the taxpayers are entitled. When added to that, Fannie reaches its 10% Moment, then payment in full of the original bailout deal will have been achieved, economically speaking.

Any real reform must address two essential factors. First, Fannie and Freddie are and will continue to be absolutely dependent on the de facto guarantee of their obligations by the U.S. Treasury, thus the taxpayers. They could not function even for a minute without that. The guarantee needs to be fairly paid for, as nothing is more distortive than a free government guarantee. A good way to set the necessary fee would be to mirror what the Federal Deposit Insurance Corp. would charge for deposit insurance of a huge bank with 0.1% capital and a 100% concentration in real estate risk. Treasury and Congress should ask the FDIC what this price would be.

Second, Fannie and Freddie have demonstrated their ability to put the entire financial system at risk. They are with no doubt whatsoever systemically important financial institutions. Indeed, if anyone at all is a SIFI, then it is the GSEs. If Fannie and Freddie are not SIFIs, then no one is a SIFI. They should be formally designated as such in the first quarter of 2018, by the Financial Stability Oversight Council —and that FSOC has not already so designated them is an egregious and arguably reckless failure.

When Fannie and Freddie are making a fair payment for their de facto government guarantee, have become formally designated and regulated as SIFIs, and have reached the 10% Moment,  Treasury should agree that its senior preferred stock has been fully retired.

Then Fannie and Freddie would begin to accumulate additional retained earnings in a sound framework. Of course, 79.9% of those would belong to the Treasury as 79.9% owner of their common stock. Fannie and Freddie would still be woefully undercapitalized, but progress toward building the capital appropriate for a SIFI would begin"

Mnuchin 2017
https://www.bloomberg.com/news/articles/2017-01-28/mnuchin-dims-banks-hopes-he-will-allow-a-prop-trading-revival

Additionally, Mnuchin offered further details on his thoughts regarding housing finance reform, including the role of GSEs. Mnuchin wrote in response to questions from Senator Sherrod Brown that "any solution will be dependent upon the GSEs being capitalized properly and other such controls that eliminate risk to taxpayers."

Mnuchin 2017
https://www.wsj.com/articles/trump-administration-could-support-government-backstop-for-fannie-and-freddie-mnuchin-says-1495137047
"If we end up with a scenario where we need some type of explicit guarantee, I would expect that it would be paid for and I would expect that it would hopefully never be hit,” he said. The Treasury secretary said such a system would be no different than insurance programs operated by the Federal Deposit Insurance Corp. and the Federal Housing Administration.


OMB Budget 2018 - Mulvaney
https://www.whitehouse.gov/wp-content/uploads/2018/06/Government-Reform-and-Reorg-Plan.pdf

"This proposal would reorganize the way the Federal Government delivers mortgage assistance and go beyond restructuring Federal agencies and programs by transitioning Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac to fully private entities.  Both Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac, as well as other competitive entrants, would have access to an explicit Federal guarantee for mortgage-backed securities (MBS) that they issue that is only exposed in limited, exigent circumstances. Such a guarantee would be on-budget and fully paid-for

The proposal would remove the Federal charter from statute and fully privatize the GSEs. A Federal entity with secondary mortgage market experience would be charged with regulatory oversight of the fully privatized GSEs, have the authority to approve guarantors, and develop a regulatory environment that is conducive to developing competition amongst new private guarantors and the incumbent GSEs, ensuring they would all be adequately capitalized and competing on a level playing field.

Under this proposal, which would also involve entities outside the Executive Branch of the Federal  Government, guarantors would have access to an explicit guarantee on the MBS that they issue that is only exposed in limited, exigent circumstances. Taxpayers would be protected by virtue of the capital requirements imposed on the guarantors ... The projected cost of this guarantee and other fees charged would be on-budget and accountable, resulting in reduced implicit taxpayer exposure.

Phillips 2018
https://www.housingwire.com/articles/47122-mnuchins-top-housing-advisor-says-gse-charters-should-be-removed

“The administration advocates ending the conservatorship of Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac and returning them to private ownership,” Phillips said Monday. “Their charters should be removed from statute and their operations should be overseen by the primary regulator that has the authority to approve additional guarantors to introduce competition into the secondary mortgage market   

“Guarantors should have access to an explicit federal guarantee for MBS (mortgage-backed securities) that they issue which is on budget and fully paid for, designed for use only in exigent circumstances and designed and overseen in a manner that protects the interests of taxpayers by their primary regulator,” Phillips continued..”

Mnuchin 2018
"Watt's term ends in early 2019. That will be an opportunity to “make sure we have someone in that job that supports the agenda,” Mnuchin said."

Otting 2019
Otting: ‘A lot’ can get done during acting FHFA tenure

“There’s a clear mission that’s outlined by the Treasury and the White House, what they want to accomplish,” Otting said in an interview this morning inside the building that houses both the OCC and FHFA.

“If I can move that down the rails before Mark is confirmed, there’s a lot of things I think we can get done, and then Mark could come in and continue down the path of the mission that’s been laid out,” he added.

“We have to look at the capital and liquidity requirements of the GSEs,” he said. “But by all accounts … I think the GSEs can be commended for the way they have repositioned their business models and the way they are serving the market.”

He said he was still getting his bearings in his new role, but added: “Our goal is to be able to complete the release of the GSEs but at the same time make sure that it supports the U.S. housing market.”
Excellent! Thank you so much for this detailed report.

If I may, I would like to add this speech to your list. This guy may have a say too...

Jerome Powell - July 2017
The Case for Housing Finance Reform
https://www.federalreserve.gov/newsevents/speech/powell20170706a.htm

* Make housing bailouts a remote possibility by attracting large amounts of private capital to be wiped out on first loss, before catastrophic.
* Any guarantee should be transparent, explicit and applied to securities only.
* Allow for greater competition: open up charters.
* Follow simple approach: restructure and repurpose w/o dismantling current system.
* Unacceptable status quo: find best feasible plan, not perfect answer.


DRValue

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Re: FNMA and FMCC preferreds. In search of the elusive 10 bagger.
« Reply #11208 on: January 12, 2019, 11:37:40 AM »
Not to get ahead of the en banc hearing, but what is the expected timing on the opinion?
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cherzeca

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Re: FNMA and FMCC preferreds. In search of the elusive 10 bagger.
« Reply #11209 on: January 12, 2019, 01:23:36 PM »
Not to get ahead of the en banc hearing, but what is the expected timing on the opinion?

who knows.  on one hand, 16 judges should take longer to coalesce than 3. on other hand, they all want to get back to their normal caseload.