Freddie Mac could take an impairment charge ranging from $1 billion to $5 billion on its subprime mortgage investments, according to a Credit Suisse report released Monday morning.The government-sponsored enterprise is slated to report third-quarter earnings on Tuesday and was not commenting on the projections made by Credit Suisse analyst Moshe Orenbuch. Freddie owns roughly $120 billion in subprime-related asset-backed securities, which are triple-A rated. A spokeswoman noted that the investments have senior/subordinated enhancements and that for the government-sponsored enterprise to take a loss, all the subordinated pieces would have to be wiped out first. In his report, Mr. Orenbuch says Freddie's subprime investments "likely have substantial subordination." He refers to the anticipated writedowns as an "other-than-temporary" impairment charge. Credit Suisse also reduced its 12-month price target on the stock from $68 to $45. Credit Suisse can be found on the Web at http://www.credit-suisse.com.

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