Tab for Fannie, Freddie Could Soar to $259B
That would be nearly twice what they've received so far
By Newser Editors and Wire Services
Posted Oct 21, 2010 11:29 AM CDT
These file photos from July 2008 show the Freddie Mac headquarters in McLean, Va., and the Fannie Mae headquarters in Washington.   (AP Photo)

(Newser) – The government spelled out today just how much the most expensive rescue of the financial crisis will end up costing taxpayers—as much as $259 billion for mortgage buyers Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac. By contrast, the combined bailouts of financial companies and the auto industry have cost taxpayers roughly $50 billion, and the bailouts of Wall Street banks alone, which sparked public fury, have so far brought taxpayers a $16 billion return.

Fannie and Freddie could end up costing taxpayers between $142 billion and $259 billion through 2013, the Federal Housing Finance Agency projected today. Those figures take into account dividends that the agency estimates the two companies will end up paying the government: between $80 billion and $104 billion over the next three years. The combined bailout of the two mortgage companies is on track to be the largest of the financial crisis.