On Tuesday, administration officials met with representatives from the loan servicers participating in the federal mortgage modification program. The result: a (handshake) commitment to "significantly [increase] the rate at which they are performing loan modifications," as the press release from the Treasury Department put it. A new benchmark emerged: 500,000 trial modifications begun by Nov. 1. (Each modification requires a three-month trial period.)
It's not clear how much of an increase that would represent, however. At least 200,000 have already begun, according to the administration's latest data. And a Treasury official boasted to the Washington Post earlier this week that servicers were modifying more than 20,000 loans per week. If that rate remains the same through October, servicers will almost reach the 500,000 goal, so only a slight increase in modifications should ensure that they surpass it.
Other links this morning:
Banks Asked to Ramp Up Loan Help (WaPo)
Subprime Mortgage Companies Warn on US Foreclosures (Reuters)
Countrywide Mortgage Not Living up to Deal, Critics Say (Miami Herald)
House Panel Endorses Bill Giving Shareholders More Input on Executive Pay (LAT)