The Government-Sponsored Enterprises and the mortgage crisis: the role of the affordable housing goals
The U.S. mortgage crisis that began in 2007 generated questions about the role played by Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac, the Government-Sponsored Enterprises (GSEs), in its causes. Some have claimed that the Affordable Housing Goals (AHGs), introduced by Congress through the GSE Act of 1992, and the resulting purchases of single-family mortgages the GSEs made to meet those goals, drove lending to high-risk borrowers. Using regression discontinuity analysis, I measure the effect of one of the goals, the Underserved Areas Goal (UAG), on the number of whole single-family mortgages purchased by the GSEs in targeted census tracts from 1996 to 2002. Focusing additionally on tracts that became UAG-eligible in 2005-2006, when the Department of Housing and Urban Development (HUD) began to determine eligibility using the 2000 Census, I measure the effect of the UAG on the GSEs' whole single-family mortgage purchases during peak years for the subprime mortgage market. Under the first approach, I estimate that the GSEs purchased 0 to 3 percent more goal-eligible mortgages than they would have without the UAG in place. Under the second approach, I estimate this effect to be 2.5 to 5 percent. The results suggest a small UAG effect and challenge the view that the goals caused the GSEs to supply substantially more credit to high-risk borrowers than they otherwise would have supplied. Although the goals may have spurred the GSEs to purchase more multi-family mortgages and REMICs than they otherwise would have, my analyses suggest that the GSEs' purchases of whole single-family mortgages to satisfy the goals did not drive the subprime lending boom of 2002-2006.
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- Wayne Passmore & Shane M. Sherlund & Gillian Burgess, 2005.
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Finance and Economics Discussion Series
2005-06, Board of Governors of the Federal Reserve System (U.S.).
- Wayne Passmore & Shane M. Sherlund & Gillian Burgess, 2005. "The Effect of Housing Government-Sponsored Enterprises on Mortgage Rates," Real Estate Economics, American Real Estate and Urban Economics Association, vol. 33(3), pages 427-463, 09.
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- Peter J. Wallison, 2011. "Dissent from the Majority Report of the Financial Crisis Inquiry Commission," Books, American Enterprise Institute, number 50848, October.
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- Ambrose, Brent W. & Thibodeau, Thomas G., 2004. "Have the GSE affordable housing goals increased the supply of mortgage credit?," Regional Science and Urban Economics, Elsevier, vol. 34(3), pages 263-273, May.
- Diana Hancock & Andreas Lehnert & Wayne Passmore & Shane M. Sherlund, 2006. "The competitive effects of risk-based bank capital regulation: an example from U.S. mortgage markets," Finance and Economics Discussion Series 2006-46, Board of Governors of the Federal Reserve System (U.S.).
- repec:aei:rpaper:26126 is not listed on IDEAS
- repec:aei:rpbook:24944 is not listed on IDEAS
- Peter J. Wallison, 2011. "A dissent from the majority report of the financial crisis inquiry commission," Proceedings 1118, Federal Reserve Bank of Chicago.
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