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Gov’t trying to keep people in homes: Geithner

WASHINGTON, D.C. — Treasury Secretary Timothy Geithner says the government is trying to keep as many struggling borrowers as possible in their homes in several programs.

Geithner told a congressional oversight panel Thursday that although the Treasury Department’s ability to spend new bailout funds for the central foreclosure-prevention effort expired in October, it is running other programs for borrowers in certain situations such as being unemployed.

Geithner says in testimony prepared for a hearing of the panel that the housing market remains weak. He says the government is putting downward pressure on mortgage rates through agreements with finance companies Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac.