Obama Seeks Mortgage Industry's Help in Housing Finance Reform
The Obama Administration is seeking public and industry comment on the future of the US housing finance system beginning with a "Conference on the Future of Housing Finance" in Washington DC on Aug. 17. It's not the first time the administration is seeking public input about financial reform. As HousingWire reported, the government in April posted an online questionnaire over housing finance reform. The questions ranged from what role should the government play in housing finance to the future of government-sponsored enterprises (GSEs) Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac. Although the Treasury Department received more than 300 responses to the questionnaire, submissions included few concrete proposals at the time. The latest move by the administration to involve market input, announced today by the US Department of Housing and Urban Development (HUD), brings together industry groups, market participants, academic experts and consumer and community organizations for "an open discussion about housing finance reform." Although reform of the GSEs was noticeably absent from the Dodd-Frank reform act signed by President Barack Obama last week, the legislation does require the administration to propose a method of reforming the housing market and the GSEs by the first part of next year. The conference marks the first in a series of events intended to provide public and industry input as financial reform of the housing industry takes shape. "The Obama Administration is committed to engaging stakeholders and the public as we consider proposals for reforming the housing finance system," said HUD secretary Shaun Donovan. "The need for reform is clear and we want to listen to a wide range of views as we chart a course to a more robust and stable housing market that works for the benefit of the American people." Write to Christine Ricciardi.