Financial Commitments of Federal Credit and Insurance Programs, 2012 to 2021
CBO describes the commitments the federal government has made through its credit and insurance programs, including housing, real estate, and student loan programs, deposit insurance, insurance for private pensions, and flood and crop insurance.
This report describes the size and nature of the federal government’s credit and insurance portfolios. For this analysis, the Congressional Budget Office developed three measures of credit and insurance activity—the covered amount, the net covered amount, and the allowance for losses. Using publicly available information from federal agencies’ financial statements and other government reports, CBO applied those measures to six program categories: housing and real estate programs, student loan programs, other credit programs, deposit insurance and orderly liquidation authority, insurance for private pensions, and flood and crop insurance.
- At the end of 2021, the covered amount for federal credit and insurance programs—that is, the sum of the outstanding balances of credit programs’ loans and guarantees and the total coverage provided under insurance programs—was $37.3 trillion, or one-third of the value of total financial assets owned by U.S. households. Approximately 70 percent of that amount stemmed from insurance coverage; the remaining amount is the face value of loans and loan guarantees in federal credit programs.
- Housing and real estate programs, mostly mortgage guarantees issued by Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac, accounted for 83 percent of the credit balances in 2021. From 2012 to 2021, the covered amount for direct loans and loan guarantees related to housing programs rose from $7.0 trillion to $9.7 trillion.
- Domestic deposits insured by the Federal Deposit Insurance Corporation and the National Credit Union Administration accounted for 76 percent of the insurance coverage in 2021. Those deposits totaled $19.4 trillion that year, up from $9.9 trillion in 2012.
- After adjustments to account for caps on guarantees and insurance coverage, previously recognized losses, and government resources available to cover future losses, the net covered amount for credit and insurance programs in 2021 was $24.5 trillion (or about two-thirds of the full covered amount)—$10.5 trillion in credit balances and $13.9 trillion in insurance coverage.
- Agencies expected to lose a small portion of the net covered amount in 2021. The government recognized an allowance for losses of $0.4 trillion for credit programs and a liability of $0.1 trillion for insurance programs that year. Student loan programs accounted for 90 percent of the allowance for losses in credit programs.