March 5, 2013
Reiss on Fannie and Freddie Multifamily Contraction
GlobeSt.com interviewed me (and others) about Federal Housing Finance Agency Acting Director Edward J. DeMarco plans to reduce Fannie and Freddie’s multifamily finance volume by 10% from last year’s levels:
Also consider this, says David Reiss, a professor of Law at Brooklyn Law School who has published papers on the GSEs: “We are living through a very abnormal time when the federal government dominates the market for single family and multifamily mortgages.”
This is neither necessary nor optimal, he tells GlobeSt.com. “It is not necessary because there have been long stretches in the past when the government had a much smaller role in those markets. And other credit markets operate well with no or a much smaller government footprint.”
This is not to say that there is no role for the federal government in the multifamily mortgage market, Reiss continues — just that it is far too large at this point in time. “If the reduction in the GSE footprint is telegraphed over a reasonable time horizon to the other market participants, this change should be taken in stride by the multifamily market,” he predicts.