Liquidate Fannie & Freddie: Sheila Bair

by 28 Sep 2012


(YahooTech) -- In her new book, Bull by the Horns, former FDIC Chair Sheila Bair gives a detailed account of the 2008 financial crisis and its aftermath. As you've probably heard by now, Bair is unfettered in her criticism of Tim Geithner, calling him the "bail-outer in chief" and suggesting the Treasury Secretary was more worried about protecting Citigroup (C) vs. protecting taxpayers.

But the book is more that just a Geithner-slam, even if that's been the bulk of coverage so far. Bair offering a series of recommendations for how to reform and strengthen the financial system, including abolishing Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac.

"The hybrid nature of Fannie and Freddie led to disastrous consequences," Bair writes. "Ultimately, both institutions need to be liquidated."
Given the role Fannie and Freddie play in the housing market — bigger today vs. before the 2008 crisis -- that's easier said vs. done, as we discuss in the accompanying video.

"There's no agreement on what to do with the GSEs," Bair says. "It's a broader problem with housing policy generally, there's no consensus."

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