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Financial Institution Letters
On September 7, 2008, the Federal Housing Finance Agency placed Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac into conservatorship. This action, while disruptive in the near term, was deemed necessary to provide stability to domestic and global financial markets, support the availability of mortgage credit, and protect taxpayers. The FDIC believes that these government-sponsored enterprises are important to the home mortgage market.
The federal banking agencies issued a statement on September 7th indicating that they will work with the limited number of smaller institutions that have significant holdings of Fannie Mae or Freddie Mac common and preferred shares in relation to their capital (see PR-78-2008). Consistent with this interagency press release, the FDIC reminds institutions that investments in perpetual preferred stock and common stock with readily determinable fair values, if not held for trading purposes, should be reported as available-for-sale equity securities and that any net unrealized losses on these securities are deducted from regulatory capital.
For the limited number of smaller institutions with Fannie Mae or Freddie Mac equity securities that are significant compared to their capital, the FDIC is committed to a flexible supervisory approach and will work with institutions that need to develop a Capital Restoration Plan under the Prompt Corrective Action guidelines (Part 325, Subpart B, of the FDIC's regulations). The FDIC will also take into account the unique nature of this situation when considering requests for waivers from brokered deposit restrictions.
Furthermore, Minority Depository Institutions are reminded that technical assistance is available from the FDIC, pursuant to Section 308 of the Financial Institutions Reform, Recovery and Enforcement Act of 1989.
The following guidance and information should be consulted for additional details about matters discussed in this Financial Institution Letter.
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