The Housing and Economic Recovery Act of 2008 (HERA) created the Federal Housing Finance Agency (FHFA) and gave it responsibility for, among other things, the supervision and oversight of Fannie Mae, Freddie Mac, and the 12 federal home loan banks. Specifically, FHFA was assigned responsibility for ensuring that each of the regulated entities operates in a fiscally safe and sound manner, including maintenance of adequate capital and internal controls, and carries out its housing and community development finance mission. HERA also requires FHFA to annually prepare financial statements, and further requires the Government Accountability Office (GAO) to audit these statements. Pursuant to HERA's requirement, GAO audited FHFA's fiscal year 2009 financial statements to determine whether (1) the financial statements were fairly stated and (2) FHFA management maintained effective internal control over financial reporting. GAO also tested FHFA's compliance with selected laws and regulations. GAO is not making any recommendations in this report. In commenting on a draft of this report, FHFA noted the challenges it faced in establishing the new agency while working to stabilize the housing market. It noted that it would continue to work to enhance its internal controls and ensure the reliability of its financial reporting, its operational soundness, and public confidence in its mission.
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