#FANNIEGATE @FHFA staff grows and cuts CEO pay at GSEs (that foot FHFA+Oig bills)

Posted on November 26, 2015

Even Though the GSEs are Shrinking, the FHFA and OIG Keep Adding Employees

The FHFA Wants More, More, More……

Novembe 26, 2015

By Paul Muolo for Inside Mortgage Finance

“The Federal Housing Finance Agency plans to increase its staffing levels by almost 12 percent in the New Year, even though the asset base of its two charges in conservatorship, Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac, continues to shrink.

Moreover, the agencies watchdog, the Office of Inspector General, plans to increase its head count by an aggressive 23 percent in fiscal year 2016 to 155 positions. The figures were contained in the FHFA’s new “Performance and Accountability Report.”

Budget-wise, the FHFA is actually spending less money on personnel costs: $199.1 million in FY16 compared to $199.7 million for the year just ending. The OIG is spending more: $49.9 million in the New Year compared to $48.0 million.

Besides overseeing Fannie and Freddie, the FHFA has oversight authority on the common securitization platform and the Federal Home Loan Banks, the latter of which has posted growth of less than 1.0 percent over the past nine months.

In a past audit, the OIG criticized the FHFA for lacking a “sufficient number of examiners.” In the new budget, the FHFA plans to increase its examinations head count to 275 from 248 in FY 2015.”

The FHFA IG’s office’s main job is to report on the FHFA, finding things the regulator did or didn’t do, while overseeing the GSEs, which the IG thinks should not or should have happened.

Most IG’s and their reports are not worth a pot to spit in (you thought I was going to say something else!!). Well, they are not worth that either!

More FHFA IG staffers to look after more FHFA employees seems to be a circle that needs broken. But—as often is the case—who will stop them, since—join me now—“It’s only Fannie and Freddie!”

Since the two companies will pay for all of this overhead, the bean counters at OMB likely won’t balk. But, they should.

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