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Treasury Releases Guest List for Next Week’s Housing Finance Forum

Undoubtedly, the model of home financing is in for a change. And the structural bastions of the nation's mortgage system â€" ""Fannie Mae"":http://www.fanniemae.com and ""Freddie Mac"":http://www.freddiemac.com â€" are at the very center of the debate.
[IMAGE] Ideas range from putting the multi-trillion dollar mortgage market completely in the hands of private lenders and completely eliminating the two GSEs, who have drained taxpayers of some $145 billion over the past two years, to turning Fannie and Freddie into official government agencies and upping the administration's ante in providing the ""American Dream.""

The ""Treasury announced late last month"":http://dsnews.comarticles/administration-to-host-august-conference-on-housing-finance-reform-2010-07-27 that it will host a conference in Washington, D.C. next Tuesday, to solicit input from industry stakeholders that will help guide the administration's decisions in shaping the new housing finance system, including what to do with Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac.

On Thursday, the ""administration released details"":http://www.treasury.gov/press/releases/tg826.htm of its agenda for the forum and the names of several industry heavyweights who have been invited to attend and participate in the discussions.

Lewis Ranieri, the man who has been called the ""father of the mortgage-backed securities market,"" and Bill Gross, co-chief investment officer of PMICO, which runs the world's largest mutual fund, are among the 12 individuals on the guest list.

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Executives from the nation's two largest mortgage lenders will also be in attendance â€" Barbara Desoer, president of Bank of America Home Loans, and Mike Heid, co-president of Wells Fargo Home Mortgage. Mark Zandi, chief economist of Moody's Analytics also made the cut, as did S.A. Ibrahim, CEO of mortgage insurer Radian Group.

Representatives from the National Urban League, the MacArthur Foundation, the nonprofit Center for Financial Services Innovation, and the American Enterprise Institute think tank, as well as two university professors have also been asked to participate in the exchange.

Treasury Secretary Tim Geithner and HUD Secretary Shaun Donovan will moderate the morning panel discussions ""about the critical issues surrounding housing finance reform,"" according to the Treasury's statement. Panel members will then split up into six breakout sessions, before the forum comes to an end at 1:30 p.m. (EDT).

""This conference is an opportunity to engage stakeholders and experts with broad knowledge and many perspectives,"" said Dr. Raphael Bostic, HUD Assistant Secretary for Policy Development and Research. ""It is part of our larger effort to make sure that we have a deep and wide understanding of these issues as we chart a thoughtful, sound path forward in reforming our housing finance system.""

Excluded from the list of guest speakers were industry trade and lobbying groups, such as the Mortgage Bankers Association (MBA) and the National Association of Realtors (NAR). However, MBA says its chairman will be in attendance.

The event, held at the Treasury building next Tuesday, August 17, will be streamed live on ""www.treasury.gov"":http://www.treasury.gov.

Secretary Geithner has said he plans to deliver the administration's new blueprint for the nation's housing finance system by January of next year.