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BUSINESS
May 12, 1989 | From United Press International
Taiwan's commercial banks recently engaged in a game of chicken with the Central Bank of China and lost. Now they are paying the consequences in the form of higher interest rates and tightened loan practices. But the transition to doing business under a central bank determined to rein in credit and ease inflationary pressure will not be easy for either Taiwan's banks or the customers they serve. The three provincial government-run banks, which claim a 30% market share among commercial banks, finally buckled under central bank pressure in late April and raised interest rates on deposits and loans for the first time since the central bank raised reserve requirements April 1 as part of its anti-inflation campaign.
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BUSINESS
April 9, 2014 | By Don Lee
WASHINGTON - An account of the Federal Reserve's last meeting suggests that policymakers aren't as eager to take away the punch bowl as the market thought. The minutes of the March 18-19 meeting state that Fed officials worried that their individual projections for when the central bank would start raising interest rates "could be misconstrued" as indicating a shift by the Fed committee to tighter monetary policy. The average projections released after the March meeting showed a slight move forward in the anticipated timing of a Fed rate increase, and Fed Chairwoman Janet L. Yellen herself gave the impression in a news conference that day that a rate hike could be made by mid-2015, earlier than what the market had been expecting.
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OPINION
December 16, 2012
Re "Fed to tie interest rate to job gains," Dec. 13 It's disappointing that no mention is made of the effect of the Federal Reserve's decision to keep interest rates at rock bottom on those who have set aside a good portion of their incomes as savings over the years. People who have been fiscally prudent all their lives to build savings for their later years now see the income they had counted on from those savings diminished by these low rates. Although the Fed's actions may help encourage the investment needed for the job growth we so badly require, it would be nice to see the downside for a large segment of the population at least acknowledged.
BUSINESS
April 6, 2014 | By Tom Petruno
Over the last six years, roaring bears and raging bulls both have had their turns to be right about financial markets. But investing success in the next market phase could be far more about pinpointing individual opportunities than riding a wave. This is when it should pay for a money manager to have maximum flexibility: the option to go almost anywhere with investors' dollars in search of decent returns. That could include stocks, bonds, real estate or commodities, for example.
NEWS
April 26, 2012 | By Jon Healey
President Obama and congressional Democrats have leaped on the student loan issue as a partisan talking point, yet it's looking like the GOP has outflanked them. At issue is whether new recipients of a particular kind of financial aid for college, called subsidized Stafford loans, will pay twice the rate of interest on loans issued after July 1 as the ones issued now. Congress had passed a law in 2007 gradually reducing the rate from 6.8% to 3.4%, but the law expires in a little more than two months.
BUSINESS
February 24, 2010 | Bloomberg News
Most Federal Reserve bank directors voted for keeping the discount rate unchanged in mid-January, just weeks before the central bank raised the rate it charges for direct loans, according to minutes released in Washington. Directors at the St. Louis and Kansas City, Mo., Fed banks voted to increase the discount rate by a quarter of a point, to 0.75%, on Jan. 14, while directors at the 10 remaining regional Fed banks voted to maintain the rate at 0.5% during the month, minutes of the Fed board's decisions showed Tuesday.
NEWS
April 21, 2012 | By Michael A. Memoli
President Obama used his weekly video address to launch what will be a weeklong push on the issue of college affordability, pressing lawmakers to act to prevent a sharp increase in interest rates for student loans. The president noted that at a time of economic distress, a college degree has never been more important. But "it's also never been more expensive. " "In America, higher education cannot be a luxury. It's an economic imperative that every family must be able to afford," Obama said.
BUSINESS
February 20, 2010 | Tom Petruno, Market Beat
How much of an economic recovery can we stand? With the Federal Reserve now looking serious about taking away some of the unprecedented support it has provided to the banking system and the economy, policymakers are posing a whole new set of challenges for financial markets. Stocks, bonds, real estate and commodities all have fed off cheap credit for the last year, which is why even the hint of higher short-term interest rates could be unsettling for them. But not so far: On Friday, U.S. markets were generally calm after the Fed late Thursday announced that it would raise the "discount rate" that banks pay for loans from the Fed to 0.75% from 0.50%.
BUSINESS
October 24, 2012 | By Jim Puzzanghera
WASHINGTON -- Federal Reserve policymakers on Wednesday held steady on their new stimulus program, launching no new initiatives while saying there has been some improvement in household spending and an uptick in inflation since the effort began last month. In a statement after its two-day meeting, the Federal Open Market Committee left short-tern interest rates unchanged and reiterated that it planned to keep them at their current level at least through mid-2015 because of the struggling economy.
BUSINESS
February 8, 2011 | David Lazarus
John Robert Aguirre stood forlornly at RPM Lenders on the edge of South-Central Los Angeles, slapping twenties onto the yellow countertop. He was a week late with his monthly payment, and the anxiety showed on his face. His loan has an annual interest rate of more than 100%. He'd put up his truck as collateral. A missed payment could result in the loss of his vehicle. "I'm a self-employed electrician," Aguirre, 41, told me as he finished counting out the bills. "If I don't have my truck, I can't work.
BUSINESS
March 30, 2014 | By Kenneth R. Harney
WASHINGTON - Can you be charged interest on your mortgage even after you've fully paid it off? Can the meter keep running when you owe the bank nothing - your principal balance is zero? Surprise! Much to the chagrin of large numbers of home sellers and refinancers, the answer for years has been yes. If your loan was insured by the Federal Housing Administration and you paid it off before maturity, at closing you'd be expected to cough up a full month's interest, no matter what day of the month you actually settled.
SPORTS
March 21, 2014 | By Walter Hamilton
A week-long rally in the stock market carried the Standard & Poor's 500 index to an intraday record Friday morning, the latest indication that investors worry more about missing potential gains than suffering losses. Stocks have been buoyed this week by generally positive economic data that have eased concerns about the potential for interest rates to rise next year. Stocks also have overcome geopolitical tensions between the United States and Russia, brushing aside the brinkmanship over the future of Crimea and the Ukraine.
BUSINESS
February 17, 2014 | By Jim Puzzanghera
British authorities on Monday charged three former Barclays Bank employees with fraud for allegedly rigging a key interest rate in the run-up to the financial crisis. The country's Serious Fraud Office said it filed criminal charges against Peter Charles Johnson, Jonathan James Matthew and Stylianos Contogoulas in connection with the manipulation of the London interbank offered rate, known as Libor. The office, which investigates and prosecutes complex fraud cases, said the violations took place between June 2005 and August 2007.
OPINION
February 13, 2014
Re "Payday lenders can't hide ugly rates," Column, Feb. 11 The payday loan industry can try and dress up its loans to look less abusive, but it's just putting lipstick on a pig. Californians pay $578 million in interest payments on payday loans every year, with interest rates ranging from 175% to 480%. It's no wonder the proposal to have the U.S. Postal Service provide low-interest loans is attracting so much attention. Even after accounting for jobs created by the industry, the Insight Center for Economic Development found that payday lenders are responsible for a net loss of $135 million in economic activity in California every year.
BUSINESS
February 3, 2014 | By Andrew Tangel
NEW YORK -- First it was worries over China and other developing countries. Now investors have another reason to question the U.S. economy's growth.  The Dow Jones industrial average was down 224.64 points, or 1.4%, to 15,474.21 in mid-day trading in New York. The fall in stocks came after a report showed a slowdown in the U.S. manufacturing sector. The broader Standard & Poor's 500 index fell 29.78 points, or 1.7%, to 1,752.81. The technology-focused Nasdaq composite index lost 89.63 points, or 2.2%, to 4,014.25.
BUSINESS
January 29, 2014 | By Andrew Tangel
NEW YORK - Stocks slumped as worries over growth in the developing world continued to rattle investors ahead of an announcement Wednesday afternoon by the U.S. Federal Reserve. The Dow Jones industrial average was down 121.31 points, or 0.8%, to 15,807.25 in midday trading on Wall Street. The broader Standard & Poor's 500 index slid 8.48, or 0.5%, to 1,748.02. The technology-focused Nasdaq composite index fell 14.01, or 0.3%, to 4,083.96. Investors have become increasingly alarmed this year about the strength of economies in emerging markets as the Fed begins to scale back its massive monetary stimulus.
OPINION
April 13, 1997
Dear Alan Greenspan: If it works don't fix it. Please don't fix it! CHARLES SUPPLE Long Beach
BUSINESS
January 15, 2014 | By Andrew Khouri
Mortgage applications rose nearly 12% last week as interest rates fell, according to an industry survey. Both refinance and purchase applications increased last week, the Mortgage Bankers Assn. said Wednesday. The group's refinance index surged 11% from a week earlier, while the seasonally adjusted purchase index jumped 12%. But the increase comes as mortgage activity generally is trending downward and interest rates are expected to rise. On Tuesday, citing those concerns, the association cut forecast for mortgage originations in 2014 by $57 billion to $1.12 trillion.
BUSINESS
January 5, 2014 | By Walter Hamilton
With interest rates set to rise, many on Wall Street are wondering if the municipal bond market is in for another pummeling as 2014 gets underway. Investors couldn't get out fast enough last year. Bonds from states, cities and counties suffered their worst annual performance since 2008 and only their fourth losing year since 1990. The nearly $4-trillion market, a favorite of mom-and-pop investors for their relative safety and tax benefits, seemed to get hit from all sides. Wall Street was spooked by talk that the Federal Reserve would put an end to the easy-money policies that helped propel stocks to new heights.
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