Armando Falcon, the chief regulator for Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac who pushed for tougher capital and disclosure standards for the two secondary mortgage giants, resigned earlier this month amid White House pressure to make way for a Republican appointee.
In his place, the Bush Administration nominated Mark Brickell, an expert on financial derivatives and head of electronic trading firm Blackbird Holdings, Inc., to be the new director of the Office of Federal Housing Enterprises Oversight, known as OFHEO.
Falcon, who was appointed in 1999 by President Clinton and had a year left on his term to serve, was asked by the White House Tuesday to resign. That was just hours before Falcon released a study suggesting a systemic risk posed by Fannie and Freddie that could cause massive disruptions in the mortgage market.
The nomination of Brickell, former chairman of the International Swaps and Derivatives Association, comes after both Fannie and Freddie have reported difficulties accounting for their derivatives portfolios, held to hedge their huge mortgage portfolios.