Arkadi Kuhlmann, chief executive officer of ING Direct USA, explains that the Obama administration established the Home Affordable Modification Program early last year to slow foreclosures. HAMP has enjoyed limited success, however, because of the government's "counterproductive accounting rules." Mr. Kuhlmann said the rules make financial institutions reluctant to modify mortgages. "We, like other banks, are doing our best to keep people in their homes," Mr. Kuhlmann writes. "But the government has to help -- not by passing out more dollars, but by bringing some common sense to the rules of the game."

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