Frequently Asked Questions

Guidelines for Citing BEA Information | ID: 508 | Created: Oct-24-2008
Answer

Where do GSEs, like Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac, appear in the GDP accounts?

GSEs
Government-sponsored enterprises (GSEs) are private companies that were established and chartered by the federal government. (GSEs are different from government enterprises, such as the U.S. Postal Service and local transit agencies, which are businesses owned and operated by government.) In the GDP accounts, government-sponsored enterprises are treated as financial corporations in the business sector. Their value added is recorded in the business sector, and their profits (or losses) are included in corporate profits. Government-sponsored enterprises include the following companies: the Federal National Mortgage Association (Fannie Mae), the Federal Home Loan Mortgage Corporation (Freddie Mac), Federal Home Loan banks, Federal Farm Credit banks, and the Federal Agricultural Mortgage Corporation (Farmer Mac).

Conservatorship
On September 7, 2008, the Federal Housing Finance Agency (an agency of the federal government) placed Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac under its conservatorship and the U.S. Treasury acquired preferred stock in each company. At present, however, the GDP accounts continue to classify these two government-sponsored enterprises as private financial corporations.

For information on financial interventions, please see the FAQ: How do federal financial interventions, such as the Emergency Economic Stabilization Act of 2008, affect the GDP accounts?

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