Report: More oversight needed of salaries at Fannie, Freddie

Issa said he is prepared work with the "FHFA to ensure the implementation of necessary reforms to preserve and conserve taxpayer assets exposed by the enterprises’ conservatorship."

Lawmakers have pressed the FHFA to reduce executive compensation despite arguments from acting director Edward DeMarco that salaries must be competitive to attract the talent and expertise needed to oversee $5 trillion in mortgage assets. 

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In March, FHFA implemented a revised compensation program that reduces the annual pay of the Fannie's and Freddie's chief executives to about $600,000 each, down from about $5 million.

Total executive compensation runs about $92 million a year, well below the $455 million total for senior professionals last year. 

"FHFA’s oversight of senior professional compensation is comparatively limited," the report concluded. 

The report examines the salaries of Fannie's and Freddie's 2,100 highest-paid employees. 

"Although FHFA has controlled the enterprises’ non-executive compensation levels through the ongoing pay freeze, the agency’s oversight of the related compensation structures, processes and controls has been limited," the report said.

"FHFA has not conducted any reviews or examinations to gain assurance that the enterprises’ non-executive compensation costs are reasonable and justified." 

FHFA agreed with the recommendation.