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Mission and Milestones

Mission

The mission of the Federal Home Loan Bank of San Francisco is to enable families and individuals of all income levels to obtain quality housing and become homeowners by providing wholesale products and services that help member financial institutions:

In accomplishing its mission, the Bank will:

Milestones

Congress created the Federal Home Loan Bank System in 1932 to provide a reserve banking system for thrift institutions and the housing finance industry that would come to the rescue of beleaguered homeowners in the midst of the Great Depression. Today, over 7,300 financial institutions nationwide rely on the 11 regional Federal Home Loan Banks as a source of low-cost liquidity to help them meet the credit needs of their communities.

July 22, 1932

The Federal Home Loan Bank Act of 1932 is signed into law by President Herbert Hoover. This Act establishes the Federal Home Loan Bank System—the Federal Home Loan Bank Board and 8 to 12 district banks—to serve as a reserve credit system for member savings and loan associations, savings banks, and life insurance companies.

October 15, 1932

The Federal Home Loan Bank of Los Angeles opens.

March 29, 1946

The Federal Home Loan Bank of San Francisco is founded when the Federal Home Loan Bank Board merges the Federal Home Loan Bank of Los Angeles with the Federal Home Loan Bank of Portland and moves the office to San Francisco.

August 9, 1989

The Financial Institutions Reform, Recovery and Enforcement Act of 1989 (FIRREA) is signed into law by President George H. W. Bush. FIRREA abolishes the Federal Home Loan Bank Board and transfers its responsibility for oversight of the Federal Home Loan Banks to the Federal Housing Finance Board. The Bank Board’s previous supervisory and regulatory responsibilities with respect to thrift institutions and their holding companies are transferred to the newly created Office of Thrift Supervision, an office within the Department of the Treasury. FIRREA opens membership in the Federal Home Loan Bank System to federally insured depository institutions, including eligible commercial banks, credit unions, and thrift and loans. FIRREA also mandates assessments for the newly created Affordable Housing Program, a competitive grant program that supports the affordable housing activities of its members, and for debt coverage on bonds issued to fund the Resolution Funding Corporation (REFCORP).

November 12, 1999

The Federal Home Loan Bank System Modernization Act of 1999 is signed into law by President Bill Clinton as Title VI of the Gramm-Leach-Bliley Act. This Act makes membership voluntary for all members, expands access to the Banks’ products and services, revises the formula for calculating the REFCORP assessment, creates a framework for reforming the capital structure of the Federal Home Loan Banks, and reassigns many corporate governance responsibilities from the Federal Housing Finance Board to the Federal Home Loan Banks.

August 29, 2005

The Bank becomes a registrant with the Securities and Exchange Commission under the Securities Exchange Act of 1934.

July 30, 2008

The Housing and Economic Recovery Act of 2008 (HERA) is signed into law by President George W. Bush. With this legislation, the Federal Home Loan Bank System’s existing regulator, the Federal Housing Finance Board, is replaced with the Federal Housing Finance Agency, which also oversees Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac.