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Regulating Freddie Mac:

The Washington Post has an interesting story on conflict between Freddie Mac and the feds.

Half a year after the government seized Freddie Mac, confusion about its role is stoking tensions between the company and its regulator, including a dispute this month over how much the mortgage giant should reveal to private investors about its financial troubles.

Federal officials who took over Freddie Mac stopped short of nationalizing the company, leaving it partly in private hands. This means Freddie still has to answer to investors and file financial disclosures.

But when Freddie Mac's executives concluded a few weeks ago that they had to disclose that the government's management of the McLean company was undermining its profitability and would cost it tens of billions of dollars, the firm's regulator urged it not to do so, according to several sources familiar with the matter.

Freddie Mac executives refused to bend. The clash grew so severe that they threatened to go to the Securities and Exchange Commission, which oversees corporate disclosures, to secure a ruling that the regulator's request was out of line. The company's regulator backed down, the sources said.

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