Congressional hearing scheduled on the future of Ginnie Mae

HFSC set to hear testimony this Wednesday

The House Financial Services Committee is set to hear testimony on Wednesday from the acting director of Ginnie Mae on the future of the only entity that securitizes federally insured mortgages.

Unlike Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac, Ginnie Mae only bundles mortgages with the Federal Housing Administration, the Department of Agriculture — or another federal institution — insuring the collateral. Ginnie Mae is not publicly traded and sits within the operations of the Department of Housing and Urban Development.

Therefore, in some ways, the operations of Ginnie Mae could be considered an indication of what might be in store for future, larger housing reform. In other words, should the government wish to modify activities at Ginnie Mae, it stands to reason it may also wish to modify the activities at Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac in a similar fashion.

Wednesday’s hearing may provide more insight into this direction, according to a note this morning from Brian Gardner and Michael Michaud, equity researchers at Keefe, Bruyette & Woods.

“Michael Bright, the acting director at Ginnie Mae, will testify for the Trump administration, so we may get some clues about where the administration wants to go on mortgage finance and the future of the GSEs,” they said.

“As a reminder, Mr. Bright used to work for Sen. Bob Corker (R-TN), who has been a proponent of winding down the GSEs and replacing them with a new mortgage finance system.”

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