The Dodd-Frank Wall Street reform legislation managed to pass with one piece that forces banks to be somewhat responsible for their lending, a provision that requires lenders to retain five percent of the residential loans that they make. That's supposed to make banks less anxious to secure risky loans, bundling up that risk, and selling it off as securities. You know, the practice that created the whole massive casino that wrecked the global economy.
Unsurprisingly, that requirement has proven too onerous for the banks to be able to live with. So, of course, they've got their Republican lap dogs primed to try to repeal it.
Rep. Scott Garrett (R-N.J.) is looking to entice the private sector back into a housing market now dominated by Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac with a new bill he introduced Thursday.
The legislation is aimed at making it easier for private investors to begin buying and selling mortgages bunched into securities, a bid to free the market from the "duopoly" enjoyed by the two government-sponsored enterprises.[...]
[H]is bill would eliminate a provision of the Dodd-Frank financial reform law that requires financial firms to retain "skin in the game" by holding some of the risk from mortgages they packaged into bonds.
Garrett said he hopes to move his bill through his subcommittee in short order, as the full committee begins to consider other GOP housing bills as they advance to the House floor.
Just to put a big cherry on top of it all for the banks, the bill would also "prohibit the practice of mortgage 'cram downs,'" or principal reduction on mortgages. It's not like federal regulators are really seriously considering forcing this haircut on the banks—an option that would probably be fairest to customers, since it would mean their mortgages reflect the real value of their home—but Garrett wants to make sure that it can never happen.
Why does Rep. Scott Garrett want to do this? To "try to create a more level playing field for the private market to be able to stand up again." Right, cuz the banks are operating on such a fucking unlevel playing field and don't want to lend out the massive cash deposits that they've been whining about unless they can do it without any rules.