By Mary Christina Love
October 15, 2008

Moody’s Investors Service, a credit rating agency, claims that the global Islamic finance market has grown about 15% each year since 2004 and is now worth about $700 billion worldwide. The heavyweights of global finance took notice: Citigroup, HSBC, Deutsche Bank and others have affiliates devoted to Islamic finance.

Giant mortgage investor Freddie Mac began buying sharia-compliant mortgages in 2001. Freddie Mac buys from four banks that together originate mortgages nationwide. In addition to Devon Bank in Chicago, Freddie Mac bought mortgages from Guidance Residential in Reston, Va.; University Bank in Ann Arbor, Mich.; and American Finance House Lariba in Pasadena, Calif.

Freddie Mac bought more than $250 million in Islamic mortgages in 2007, but volume slipped as the housing market declined………

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