U.S. Agency Debt
One of the lasting legacies of the Great Depression is the increased use of U.S. government chartered entities that we call agencies. The agencies were established to aid a wide variety of consumers including homeowners, farmers, agricultural interests, and students. One way the agencies assist these consumers is by reducing their borrowing costs. Since 2000, there has been a tremendous increase in the issuance of agency debt. In this chapter, we discuss the agencies that issue the most debt.
Some agencies are called government-sponsored enterprises (GSEs). Some of these GSEs are publicly owned corporations. The two most important of these publicly owned GSEs are Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac. We discuss Fannie and Freddie ...