Releasing its first five-year strategic plan, the Federal Housing Finance Agency said Thursday that the conservatorship of Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac "represents a serious challenge to the agency," but gave no outline for how the government-sponsored enterprises might be resolved.

In an interview with American Banker this week, Finance Agency Director James Lockhart said Fannie and Freddie could emerge from conservatorship within a year and a half, but he did not say what the companies might look like. The options range from nationalization to privatization or a public-utility model.

The Obama administration's regulatory reform plan, which was released last month, did not address the GSEs, but the White House plans to develop a strategy by February.

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