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David Brickman to step down from Freddie Mac

Michael Hutchins has been named as interim president, effective Monday, Nov. 16.

Just weeks before President-elect Joe Biden’s administration is sworn into office, Freddie Mac CEO David Brickman will step down as head of the government sponsored enterprise, the company disclosed in a filing on Friday.

Brickman, who took over as CEO of the company in July 2019, will leave Freddie Mac on Jan. 8, Freddie Mac disclosed in a filing with the Securities and Exchange Commission.

Michael Hutchins has been named as interim president, effective Monday, Nov. 16. Hutchins will continue to lead the investments and capital markets business. He won’t receive any additional compensation.

Freddie Mac’s board plans to launch a search for a new CEO, the filing says.

The departure of Brickman, who ran the multifamily division before taking over from prior CEO Donald Layton, comes amid questions about the future of the GSE. President Donald Trump’s administration has worked feverishly toward removing Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac from conservatorship, but most political observers believe a Biden administration would resist and reverse any such moves.

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Last month, Brickman spoke of the prospect of leaving conservatorship.

“The company delivered strong earnings on higher revenues, substantially increasing our total equity by $2.5 billion to $13.9 billion – bringing us one step closer to our goal of responsibly exiting conservatorship,” he said following a third quarter earnings presentation. “We did this while helping hundreds of thousands of families buy, rent and remain in their homes.”

Freddie Mac’s net income rose to $2.5 billion in the third quarter of 2020, up from $1.5 billion in the second quarter. Year-to-date, Freddie Mac has made $4.41 billion in profits.

Before ending the profit sweep, Freddie Mac had repaid a total of $119.7 billion to the U.S. Department of the Treasury, exceeding its original draw during the financial crisis by about $48.1 billion. Fannie Mae has repaid a total of $181.4 billion, compared to $119.8 billion that it drew.

Hutchins has served as Freddie Mac’s head of investments and capital markets since 2015, and has worked at the GSE since 2013. Prior to his stint at Freddie, Hutchins was co-founder and Chief Executive Officer of financial services firm PrinceRidge. He’s also worked at UBS and now-defunct Saloman Brothers.

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