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FHFA Reaches 13th Bank Settlement

paying-moneyThe Federal Housing Finance Agency [1] (FHFA), acting as conservator for Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac, announced a settlement [2] with Barclays Bank PLC for $280 million. The settlement resolves legal claims against the bank related to allegations of violations of federal and state securities laws in connection with private-label mortgage-backed securities purchased by the GSEs.

The suit, FHFA v. Barclays Bank PLC, covers the period from 2005-2007, and falls under the FHFA's purview as conservator for the two companies. Barclays will pay $227 million to Freddie Mac and $53 million to Fannie Mae, according to the settlement.

The settlement was cautious to note, "This Agreement does not constitute an admission by any of the Barclays Defendants of any liability or wrongdoing whatsoever, including, but not limited to, any liability or wrongdoing with respect to any of the allegations."

"To the contrary, the Barclays Defendants vigorously deny the allegations in the Actions," the settlement said.

The FHFA's settlement with Barclays is just a single point in a long line of legal actions taken against banks and other institutions on the heels of the financial crisis.

This particular settlement represents the 13th settlement related to the 18 private-label securities lawsuits FHFA filed in 2011. Previous settlements include payments of $9.3 billion from Bank of America [3],$885 million from Credit Suisse [4]$122 million from Société Générale [5], and $1.25 billion from Morgan Stanley [6].

All told, FHFA recovered nearly $8 billion [7] from banking institutions in 2013.