Small home lenders — whose ranks have already thinned over the last two years as the market has contracted — could have an even tougher time now that Fannie Mae has tightened its eligibility requirements for loan sellers and servicers.

The new standards for doing business with Fannie cover such things as minimum net worth and capital ratios. They were released last week and drew less attention than they might have were it not for the week's tumultuous events.

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