The American Interest
Analysis by Walter Russell Mead & Staff
Now that the Election Is Over…

The Federal Housing Authority has just reported that it may lose $46 billion on guaranteed loans. This would leave the agency with a deficit of $16 billion, which may require a taxpayer-funded bailout for the first time in history.

With the report going live Friday, Congress is already preparing for a fight over a potential FHA bailout. The Wall Street Journal has more:

Overall, the FHA insured nearly 739,000 loans that were 90 days or more past due or in foreclosure at the end of September, an increase of more than 100,000 loans from a year ago. That represents about 9.6% of all insured loans.

Most of the agency’s losses stem from loans made between 2007 and 2009, as the housing bust deepened. Loans made since 2010 are expected to be very profitable.

“FHA has strayed a long way from its original mission,” said Sen. Bob Corker (R., Tenn.) in a statement on Thursday.

“The recognition that FHA’s economic value is now negative is a stark reminder that we have put off fundamental housing finance reform for too long.”

Now they tell us. After the election is safely over, the bad news begins rolling in. It’s going to be a long winter.

Published on November 16, 2012 3:21 pm