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The MReport Webcast: Tuesday 8/25/2015

Economic growth in the second quarter fell short of July expectations, presenting a less promising outlook for the rest of the year, according to Fannie Mae’s August 2015 Economic and Housing Outlook. Although the government revised higher economic growth for the first quarter, the disappointing performance of second quarter growth and less optimistic prospects for the current quarter put the full-year 2015 growth outlook at 2.1 percent—the same as in Fannie Mae's prior forecast.

Housing, consumer spending, and government spending are likely to be the largest drivers of growth this year, according to the outlook. Housing data was mixed in June, but all main indicators increased during the first six months of the year compared to the same period last year. This supports Fannie Mae's expectation of a broad-based improvement in the housing market.

Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac will maintain first-lien status on loans guaranteed by the GSEs, according to an announcement from HUD. The GSEs first-lien status will hold over Property Assessed Clean Energy loans. The ongoing effort to preserve the first-lien status of GSE-backed loans has been a subject of debate since December 2014. At this time, the Federal Housing Finance Agency released a statement warning organizations that label mortgage loans with "super-priority lien" status that such loans will not push mortgages backed by Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac into the secondary position.