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FIG Watch: Freddie Mac moves onto the offensive

Freddie Mac’s new treasurer, Tim Bitsberger, marks a break with agency tradition in being an outsider. But he reckons his US Treasury experience can only enhance Freddie’s transparent approach to raising money and its stringent risk management standards. Bitsberger’s hope is that these will serve it well as it builds out its retained portfolio again. Kathryn Tully reports.

“The more that we consolidate our trading activity as well as our issuance, I believe firms will allocate more capital to Freddie Mac. If we just transact with people occasionally, I don’t think those firms will be so committed to our name”
Tim Bitsberger, Freddie Mac

When Tim Bitsberger started his new job at Freddie Mac’s headquarters in McLean, Virginia, it meant he would still be near his old base of Washington, DC. Before he became Freddie Mac’s new treasurer and senior vice-president of funding and investor relations in January, he was assistant secretary for financial markets at the US Treasury. In this role, he advised the undersecretary for domestic finance on such areas as federal debt management, state and local finance, financial market oversight, and regulation. Before this he worked on Wall Street for 15 years, most recently as senior vice-president of investments at Salomon Smith Barney between 1999 and 2001. He is Freddie Mac’s third treasurer in the past two years. His appointment is a change from the norm at Freddie of an internal candidate emerging. His recent background means he is well placed to guide the mortgage financer in its new regulatory and accounting environment.

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