WASHINGTON (7/1/09)--The Office of the Comptroller of the Currency (OCC) and the Office of Thrift Supervision (OTS) reported increases in loan modifications, foreclosures, and the number of loan delinquencies in their mortgage metrics report for the first quarter of 2009. In the press release, Comptroller of the Currency John Dugan said that while he is “very concerned about the rise in delinquent mortgages and foreclosure actions, the shift in emphasis by servicers to more sustainable, payment-reducing modifications is a positive step that should show significant benefits in the coming months.” Loan servicers implemented over 185,000 loan modifications during the quarter, a 55% increase from the prior quarter and up 172% from the corresponding period in 2008, the release said. Over half of these loan modifications lowered both principal and interest payments for their homeowners, the agencies said. While modifications have helped some homeowners avoid foreclosure, the foreclosure process was unavoidable for others. The agencies reported a 22% rise in in-process foreclosures during the quarter. The first quarter foreclosure total of 844,389 represented a 73% increase from the amount reported during the corresponding period of 2008. So-called “seriously delinquent” mortgages -- those that are more than 60 days overdue -- also rose, with prime mortgages representing two-thirds of that total. The report, which detailed the status of $6 trillion in funds spread over 34 million mortgage loans, did not reflect the impact of the recently implemented Making Home Affordable or Hope for Homeowners programs.