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Subject:  Friggin' Bush! Date:  11/17/2012  9:28 AM
Author:  2828 Number:  655652 of 756660

http://www.latimes.com/business/money/la-fi-mo-fha-federal-h...

WASHINGTON -- The Federal Housing Administration, which has played a crucial role in stabilizing the housing market, said it ended September with $16.3 billion in projected losses -- a possible prelude to a taxpayer bailout.

The FHA does not lend money, but guarantees loans made by banks in exchange for insurance premiums. The agency's role has expanded since the crash of the subprime mortgage market, and it now insures about $1.1 trillion in loans, according to Inside Mortgage Finance.

But the expanded role, including backing mortgages with as little as 3.5% down payment and for some people who have undergone recent foreclosures, has taken a toll on its finances. The agency boosted premiums and took other steps in 2009 to shore up its capital reserves.
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