Frannie wind-down could spare preferreds; faces hurdles in any case

|By:, SA News Editor

“It’s hard to find any reasonable outcome that’s really terrible for the preferreds, given what I perceive to be the value of the business that’s already there," says portfolio manager Jeffrey Lewis, an owner of the shares. Investors in the common stock, however, are making a bet Fannie Mae (FNMA +12.4%) and Freddie Mac (FMCC +13.4%) will be allowed to become dominating private companies again and keep their profits.

It's up to the courts to decide how investors will be treated, says Sen. Mike Crapo, who co-wrote the bill to wind the GSEs down. "We are not necessarily going to dictate the outcome."

As for whether a bill actually becomes law anytime soon, former Senate banking panel aide Mark Calabria gives it maybe a 10% chance of getting to the president's desk this year. The dim prospects look to be giving a boost to the common shares today.