Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac are expected to pay a combined $4.7 billion in dividends to the U.S. Treasury Department by March, as the housing finance agencies posted stronger annual 2018 net incomes than a year earlier.
In September 2008, the federal government took control of the two enterprises in a $187 billion bailout during the global credit crisis, after they were exposed to failed subprime mortgages. The two agencies have handed over their profit to the U.S. Treasury under the terms of the conservatorship. Fannie and Freddie make money by charging fees to guarantee home loans made by banks and other lenders. They also earn income from investing in mortgages and related securities.