As Congress debates the future regulatory oversight of Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac, a statement by a top Treasury official indicating the department's willingness to consider extinguishing the credit line provided to government sponsored enterprises has shifted the focus of debate from re-regulation of safety and soundness to a referendum on the entire mortgage finance system. It also underscores the bias that Treasury has against housing and, more specifically, against facilitating flow of capital into this vital industry, the NAHB says.
Jerry Howard, executive vice president and CEO of the NAHB adds, "[The official's] statements ... just reinforce what we have been saying all along--namely, that Treasury, be it under Republican or Democratic leadership, would prefer to redirect capital away from housing into other sectors of the economy, and that the agency does not have housing's best interests in mind."
The Department of Commerce has awarded $397,899 to the NAHB to help fund Access Mexico, a three-year project to expand the export market in Mexico for U.S. home builders and suppliers.
"We're honored to work with the Department of Commerce to help meet pressing housing demands in Mexico and other countries," says NAHB president Kent Conine.
The project's aims include organizing the NAHB International Housing Conferences of the Americas in Mexico City and establishing member trade missions to and from Mexico.
To learn more, visit NAHB International at www.nahb.org/category.aspx?sectionID=114.
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The substantial influx of immigrants to this country during the next 10 years will be a major support for housing demand in both rental and for-sale markets, according to NAHB economist Michael Carliner, who reports that about 1.5 million new immigrants have been coming to this country annually since the beginning of this decade.
NAHB forecasts project a net flow of up to 1.7 million immigrants annually between 2002 and 2012. Labor demands created by retiring baby boomers are likely to provide economic and political influences supporting immigration.