Press Releases

New York Field Hearing Will Focus On Building A Robust Private Mortgage Market Without Taxpayer Guarantees

Washington, September 1, 2011 - The Financial Services Committee’s ongoing efforts to build a stronger housing finance system free of taxpayer guarantees will bring several of its members to New York City next week for a subcommittee field hearing.

The Capital Markets and Government Sponsored Enterprises Subcommittee, which is spearheading the committee’s efforts to end the bailout of Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac, will meet in New York to hear from various witnesses on how a private sector mortgage market can develop and thrive.

During the field hearing, the subcommittee will examine ways that the government can help create sufficient investor demand in private-label residential mortgage-backed securities.  The subcommittee hearing will also focus on ensuring a well-functioning securitization market for mortgages and how to provide greater transparency and public disclosure to investors.

Financial Services Committee Chairman Spencer Bachus said, “The nation’s housing finance market is currently dominated by government-supported entities.  Fannie Mae, Freddie Mac and the Federal Housing Administration control 90 percent of the market.  The bailout of Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac underscores the need for a modern housing finance system that no longer relies on government guarantees.  Instead, we need a private, competitive market that prices mortgages according to risk and operates free of political interference. A more robust private mortgage market is the solution to ensure that taxpayers are never again left holding the bag for future losses.”

The bailout of Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac has cost the taxpayers $150 billion.  The two entities were placed into government conservatorship in September 2008.

House Republicans were the first to offer a comprehensive solution in 2009 to wind down the operations of Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac. Since then, Republicans have continued to lead efforts aimed at reforming the nation’s housing finance system and winding down the operations of Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac.  Since January, the Capital Markets Subcommittee has approved 14 bills to protect taxpayers by providing immediate and targeted reforms to Fannie and Freddie.

“As part of our work to end the ongoing bailout of Fannie and Freddie and wind down the government-backed mortgage giants once and for all, we need to consider what we do after the lights have been turned off.   In order to maintain a healthy, well-functioning U.S. mortgage market, we need to ensure private market participants can step in to fill the void.  This field hearing will bring us to the heart of our nation’s financial sector to discuss with industry experts the steps Congress can take to facilitate continued investor demand in the U.S. mortgage market without a government guarantee,” said Subcommittee Chairman Scott Garrett.

The subcommittee hearing will take place on Wednesday, September 7th at 10 a.m in the auditorium of the National Museum of the American Indian, The George Gustav Heye Center, Alexander Hamilton U.S. Custom House, One Bowling Green #1, New York, NY.

Accredited media organizations and networks planning to cover the hearing should RSVP by sending an email to

Witnesses scheduled to testify are:
Josh Rosner, Graham Fisher & Co.
Marty Hughes, President and Chief Executive Officer, Redwood Trust
Chris Katopis, the Association of Mortgage Investors
Ajay Rajadhyaksha, Barclays Capital

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