Fannie Mae's and Freddie Mac's recent financial results have significantly exceeded even the government's most optimistic projections, making the fees they charge lenders suddenly relevant to determining their future.

As recently as October, the Federal Housing Finance Agency estimated the government-sponsored enterprises' ongoing government bailout would exceed $202 billion by mid-2012 in the best-case scenario. At worst, the hole would total around $250 billion. And under all circumstances, they would still be getting deeper in debt.

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