The Federal Housing Finance Agency's proposed rulethat would require Federal Home Loan Banks' member financialinstitutions to maintain 10% of their assets in residentialmortgages drew 1,300 comments from stakeholders and most of thosewere negative, according to FHFA Director Mel Watt.

“We had 1,300 comments on this proposal and I have to tell youthat this is an unprecedented number of comments,” Watt said duringa Tuesday hearing before the House Financial Services Committee.“And I can tell you that the bulk of those comments fromstakeholders were negative on the proposal.”

Watt didn't defend the proposals in detail but said the FHFAwould take the comments into account when evaluating the proposal.From the agency's viewpoint, the proposal was in accord withexisting federal statute, he added.

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