The GSE Guarantee Fee as a Policy Tool

9 Pages Posted: 10 Sep 2014 Last revised: 17 Sep 2014

Date Written: September 8, 2014


Setting Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac’s guarantee fee rates can have a large impact on the housing market. Setting the rate too low can negatively impact the financial health of Fannie and Freddie. It can also have a positive impact on housing prices because it reduces the overall cost of credit. On the other hand, setting the rate too high can generate excess revenues for the two companies. This would impact Congress’ plans for them as well as possible outcomes for the investor lawsuits arising from the GSE’s conservatorships. And it would also have dampening effect on housing prices, as it would increase the cost of mortgages. While the Federal Housing Finance Agency should consider the broad policy impacts when determining the guarantee fee rate, its main goal should be to set the rate at a level that properly accounts for the guarantee risk borne by the two companies.

Keywords: : Private Label Securities, PLS, FHFA, Federal Housing Finance Agency, Fannie Mae, Freddie Mac, guarantee fee, g-fee, housing finance, mortgage market, liquidity, low-income housing, Qualified Mortgage, QM, Qualified Residential Mortgage, non-QM, non-Qualified Mortgage, securitization, Dodd-Frank

Suggested Citation

Reiss, David J., The GSE Guarantee Fee as a Policy Tool (September 8, 2014). Brooklyn Law School, Legal Studies Paper No. 392, Available at SSRN:

David J. Reiss (Contact Author)

Brooklyn Law School ( email )

250 Joralemon Street
Brooklyn, NY 11201
United States

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