This week, the Federal Deposit Insurance Corporation, the Federal Reserve Board and the Officer of the Comptroller of the Currency released joint statements "encouraging financial institutions to work constructively with private student loan borrowers experiencing financial difficulties." Unemployed or underemployed student loan borrowers can struggle to make payments, the statement said, and financial institutions should clearly explain programs that can help these borrowers modify their loans, including extensions, deferrals, renewals and rewrites. Private lenders have previously expressed concerns that modifying a private student loan "might force them to categorize it as a troubled asset," which could subject them to other regulations, The Wall Street Journal reports. An FDIC spokesman said the federal banking agencies put out their statement "to clear up that confusion," saying "loan modifications would be viewed favorably on a bank's books if they are done in a 'prudent' way," the article said. For more, read the full press release and story.