Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac could lose no matter how they react to HUD Secretary Henry Cisneros' request that the GSEs lower their conventional loan limits.

Lowering limits wouldn't be popular among mortgage bankers - their primary customers - because it would restrict the number of Fannie and Freddie loans that lenders could sell into the secondary market. However. leaving the limits alone might put them at odds with Cisneros, a man who holds considerable influence over them.

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