Freddie Mac is projecting third-quarter earnings of $600 million, including a $190 million after-tax hit due to storm damage caused by hurricanes Katrina and Rita.It projects earnings of $2.1 billion through the first nine months of the year, a 19% decline from those of the same period last year. In a conference call late Dec. 1, the government-sponsored enterprise said it now has a GSE market share of 45%, compared with 41% last year. Freddie Mac, which is almost finished working its way through a $5 billion accounting scandal, is required by its regulator to have excess capital of $12 billion. At the end of September it surpassed that goal by $4.7 billion, spurring it to increase its dividend. (See related story below.)

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