February 8, 2011 |
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.
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.
April 26, 2012 |
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.
April 21, 2012 |
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.
February 24, 2010 |
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.
February 20, 2010 |
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%.