August 9, 2013 |
Dear Liz: Our son went to an expensive private school and ended up with more than $100,000 in federal and private loans by the time he graduated. My wife cosigned a private loan for $25,000 for the first year, and that was the last we heard of any loans until he graduated with a degree in social services. After he was out of school for six months, we started getting phone calls asking for payment. Turns out he electronically signed my wife's name to the next three years of his student loans.
August 7, 2013 |
The Bay Area city of Richmond had best prepare for legal warfare if it proceeds with its plan to use eminent domain to seize the mortgages of residents who owe more than their homes are worth, housing finance giant Freddie Mac warned. The city has asked the holders of about 620 underwater mortgages to sell the loans to the city at a sharp discount from face value. Richmond hopes to refinance the loans for amounts reflecting current home values, lowering the residents' payments and encouraging them to remain in the blue-collar city.
August 1, 2013 |
Fixed mortgage rates moved higher this week after two weeks of declines, with the widely watched Freddie Mac survey pegging the average rate for a 30-year home loan at 4.39%, up from 4.31% last week. That makes five weeks in a row of readings well above 4%, as the market anticipates the eventual end of a Federal Reserve bond-buying program, an effort to keep long-term rates low. The Fed said Wednesday it would continue on course for now, but it's expected to start tapering off its purchases this year, which could put upward pressure on interest rates.
July 31, 2013 |
WASHINGTON - The House passed a measure Wednesday that resolves a dispute over how to set student loan rates, sending it to President Obama, who has said he would sign the legislation "right away. " The compromise proposal, which passed 392 to 31, bases rates on the market and, at least temporarily, will allow some recipients of new federal student loans to pay lower rates than last year. As the economy improves, however, rates will increase. But the bill also caps the rates and allows borrowers to lock in interest rates over the life of the loan.
July 25, 2013 |
Mortgage rates eased for the second straight week, according to Freddie Mac, with lenders offering the 30-year fixed home loan to solid borrowers at an average of 4.31%, down from 4.37% a week ago. The typical rate for a loan fixed for 15 years dropped slightly as well, Freddie Mac said Thursday , from 3.41% to 3.39%. Start rates for variable-interest loans also fell, according to the McLean, Va., home finance company, which has been under government control since it was bailed out during the financial crisis.
July 24, 2013 |
WASHINGTON - A plan to restore lower interest rates on most college loans won Senate approval Wednesday, despite objections from a bloc of Democrats who warned it could ultimately increase the cost of a degree for many students. The legislation, which is supported by President Obama and is expected to swiftly pass the House, would reinstate a market-based approach for calculating rates, tying them to the 10-year Treasury note. The new rate for undergraduate Stafford loans would be about 3.8% this year, slightly above the rate that expired July 1. The final vote was 81-18.
July 23, 2013 |
WASHINGTON -- The Consumer Financial Protection Bureau on Tuesday sued Castle & Cooke Mortgage, accusing it of paying illegal bonuses to employees who steered home buyers toward higher-interest loans. The suit marks the first time a company has been targeted under new federal loan-origination compensation rules adopted after a mountain of bad home loans set off a global financial crisis. The bureau sued in federal court in Utah, where Castle & Cooke is based, accusing two of its top executives of running a quarterly bonus program that paid $6,100 to $8,700 to loan officers who persuaded consumers to take out pricier mortgages.
CALIFORNIA | LOCAL
July 19, 2013 |
Federal transportation officials have halted their consideration of a $5.5-billion government loan to a private company that has planned for years to build a high-speed train between Victorville and Las Vegas. The decision represents a major setback for the XpressWest project, which has had difficulty obtaining financing from investors to construct the 185-mile line. The proposed loan was many times the largest amount ever sought from the Railroad Rehabilitation and Improvement Financing Program, which is overseen by the Federal Railroad Administration.
July 18, 2013 |
WASHINGTON - Student borrowers will see interest rates reduced to levels near those that expired last month under a deal announced by lawmakers Thursday, potentially ending a battle over college costs that had divided Democrats and threatened to leave students with sharply higher costs. The legislation offered by a bipartisan group of senators largely follows the approach initially outlined by the Obama administration, which would base student loan rates on the 10-year Treasury note rate.
CALIFORNIA | LOCAL
July 16, 2013 |
Former Los Angeles Mayor Antonio Villaraigosa is making his first foray into the private sector, taking a post as a strategic advisor at the Banc of California - an aggressively expanding community bank led by specialists in high finance. Villaraigosa's part-time position advising the bank's chief executive, Steven Sugarman, as well as its board, will allow him to continue pursuing speaking engagements, an affiliation with a university or think tank, and a potential run for governor when Gov. Jerry Brown steps aside . The former mayor declined to reveal his salary or how his compensation would be structured.