Congress finally passed the housing bill and the President signed it, but champagne corks have not been popping. The president dropped his threat to veto the bill, presumably when his Treasury Secretary explained that, without the Fannie and Freddie bailout that it now encompasses, there would be a financial meltdown. The general view is that the bill is better than nothing and better late than never.

But it is not going to avert a whole lot more pain in housing, the credit markets and the economy.

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