Over the past year, threats of steep downgrades have chilled demand for securitizations of federally guaranteed student loans, but two recent transactions suggest that the market is beginning to thaw.

This development could help open the door for banks to resume unloading portfolios of Federal Family Education Loan Program (FFELP) loans. Such loans have become unattractive to hold, because of increased regulatory scrutiny of student lending and loan servicing and because banks see other, more profitable ways to put their money to work.

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