Days After Conservatorship, Freddie Mac Secures $548M Bond

Freddie Mac has announced a $548 million tax-exempt bond securitization with Citi. The deal was closed just days after the U.S. government took over the beleaguered agency. Collateral for the deal is a pool of fixed-rate tax-exempt and taxable multi-family housing revenue bonds, consisting of 79 tax-exempt bonds and nine taxable bonds. The transaction is evidence that despite the recent turmoil to hit Freddie Mac and the financial markets as a whole, the corporation, the nation’s second-largest mortgage provider, will still provide financing in a tight credit market. This transaction is the second largest tax-exempt bond securitization in the firm’s history. The transaction was completed with Municipal Mortgage Holdings Inc., a subsidiary of Citigoup Inc. The deal is Citi’s first tax-exempt bond securitization with Freddie Mac. Citicorp Funding Inc. will act as servicer of the deal and Capmark Finance Inc. as subservicer. Freddie Mac representatives portrayed the deal as part of the firm’s commitment to remain active in commercial markets. “This transaction demonstrates how Freddie Mac continues to provide much-needed liquidity to the multi-family mortgage market,” said Mike May, Multifamily senior vice president at Freddie Mac., in a release. Citigroup also noted that the deal is strong evidence of Freddie Mac’s intentions to operate as usual. “The fact that we could close a $548 million transaction with Freddie Mac three days after the appointment of a Conservator is a testament to Freddie Mac’s and the Conservator’s commitment to remain active in the multi-family space despite these challenging times,” Citi Community Capital director Hartley Hall said in a prepared statement. Freddie Mac is a government sponsored enterprise that provides liquidity to the nation’s residential markets. Its multi-family business has provided financing for approximately 55,000 multi-family properties worth about $200 billion. On Sept. 7, the firm was placed under the conservatorship of the Federal Housing Finance Agency to ensure the firm could continue in its role as a leading provider of capital for the American mortgage market.