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President Comments On Mortgages

No plans for foreclosure bailout or GSE limit increase

August 2, 2007


President Bush currently does not want to consider expanding buying limits for Fannie Mae or Freddie Mac. He said the real estate market is headed for a soft landing.

Bush made his comments at a White House press conference today about American competitiveness, according to a transcript of his comments distributed by the White House.

Regarding the subprime credit crunch, he was asked by one reporter if the two government-sponsored enterprises should be "allowed to buy mortgages beyond their current limits, or play any additional role that could help revive mortgage finance," the transcript said.

photo of George W. Bush
White House photo
of President Bush
Last year, Washington, D.C.-based Fannie reported business volume of $613.5 billion while McLean, Va.-based Freddie reported $502.0 billion in new business.

"As you know, we put up a robust reform package for these two institutions, a reform package that will cause them to focus on their core mission, first and foremost; a reform package that says like other lending institutions, there ought to be regulatory oversight," Bush reportedly said. "And therefore, first things first when it comes to those two institutions.

"Congress needs to get them reformed, get them streamlined, get them focused, and then I will consider other options."

The president said that while he supports enhancement of FHA-insured programs for increased refinancing capability, he wouldn't support a government bailout in the form of direct grants for delinquent borrowers facing foreclosure, according to a White House video of the press briefing reviewed by

"It appeared at this point in time we're headed for a soft landing," he said about the housing market. "That's what the facts say."

Sam Garcia worked in mortgage lending for twenty years prior to becoming publisher of

e-mail: [email protected]

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