Obama Signs Mortgage Bill Into Law

President Barack Obama has signed into law legislation that encourages banks to spare homeowners from foreclosure.

Obama signed the bill Wednesday in the White House's East Room. He says it protects homeowners and cracks down on lenders who take advantage of them.

The law expands an existing $300 billion program that encourages lenders to adjust a mortgage if the homeowner agrees to pay an insurance premium. The bill also extends through 2013 an increase in deposit insurance by the FDIC from $100,000 to $250,000.

The lending industry helped scuttle a tougher measure that would have forced lenders to reduce the monthly payments of owners in bankruptcy.