We have received a few questions today about why mortgage-backed securities (MBS) prices do not show the same drop in prices as seen from the Fannie Mae window. The reason is that Fannie Mae, this morning, built into their whole loan prices an increase in their required guarantee fee (G-fee). Since G-fees are paid from the borrower's loan rate and not by the owner of an MBS, MBS prices are unaffected by a change in G-fees. Most lender rate sheets began reflecting the increase in G-fees over the last few weeks, depending on lock term and delivery method.
FHFA has answered a couple of the questions we raised on Tuesday regarding the Congressionally mandated increase in Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac guarantee fees (G-fees). Effective April 1st all G-fees charged by Fannie and Freddie will be increased by 10 basis points. In addition, FHFA said that during the first part of 2012 they will determine whether the new law will require additional increases in the G-fees. Since G-fees are paid from the interest on a loan, this increase will cause mortgage rates on loans going into Fannie and Freddie mortgage-backed securities after April 1st to rise by a similar amount.