Showtime for Fannie and Freddie

Tim Geithner
Tim Geithner

They're just starting now?

More than a year ago, the Obama administration promised to lay out the future for Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac, the two mortgage finance enterprises the U.S. government took over in 2008, after massive losses and a shareholder stampede to sell left them insolvent. Today, Treasury Secretary Timothy Geithner came to Capitol Hill today to unveil that future.

What will Geithner do, nearly two years after the financial system crumbled, leaving the two hobbled agencies to prop up the mortgage markets? Will Treasury get rid of the agencies entirely, and get government out of the mortgage business, as some conservatives have demanded? Or maybe follow the National Association of Realtors' proposal and the keep the two giants going as government agencies, since along with Ginnie Mae they're really the only reason it's possible to get a mortgage right now? Something in between?

We'll have to wait a little longer for official answers.

Originally published