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Servicers prodded to do more loan mods

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Loan servicers have committed to "significantly increasing" the pace at which they negotiate loan modifications with homeowners facing foreclosure, the Obama administration said in announcing a new goal of achieving 500,000 trial loan modifications by Nov. 1.More than 200,000 trial modifications are now under way under the under the Making Home Affordable Loan Modification Program (HAMP). But in announcing the program in February, the administration said it hoped it would eventually help as many as 4 million homeowners avoid foreclosure by providing up to $75 billion in subsidies, insurance and financial incentives to loan servicers and borrowers (see story).Housing Secretary Shaun Donovan said challenges to completing loan modifications and strategies for improvement were discussed at high-level meetings Tuesday between loan servicers and government regulators, leaving him confident "that we can ramp up ... to meet these ambitious goals."The administration had also...