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Wednesday, July 21, 2010

HAMP Update: Still Ineffective

HAMP Update: Still Ineffective
Another  HAMP data report is out.  Same old story--HAMP isn't doing very much for very many people. We're up to 398,021 permanent modifications. That's out of around 1.7 million HAMP eligible mortgages and 5.7 million mortgages that are 60+ days delinquent (the June report doesn't contain the updated eligibility waterfall, unfortunately). Drop in the bucket. The trial modification numbers are a bit better, at 1.28 million, but the number of new trials each month seems to be flattening out--just 15,153 new trials started in June.  That means new permanent modifications will also start to taper off in a few months. And there are an awful lot of failed trial modifications, as Felix Salmon (commenting on the May numbers) has noted.
I've long been skeptical about HAMP as doing too little at too high a cost, and I think the numbers bear out that skepticism. How much evidence has to amass about the failure of HAMP to provide effective foreclosure relief before the program is canned and the policy debate is refocused on providing meaningful foreclosure relief? 

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