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Navient to provide $1.85B in student loan relief for lawsuit settlement

Navient will provide $1.85 billion worth of student loan relief to borrowers across the country to resolve a lawsuit with Attorney General Josh Shapiro......»»

Category: topSource: foxnewsJan 14th, 2022

550,000 student-loan borrowers got closer to relief with temporary reforms last month. 7 Democrats want those changes to be permanent.

The Ed. Dept. overhauled public service loan forgiveness last month, wiping out $1.74B in student debt for workers like teachers and firefighters. College graduation. Andy Sacks/Getty Images The Education Department announced an overhaul to the Public Service Loan Forgiveness program last month. It included a temporary waiver through October 2022 to allow different payment plans to count toward forgiveness. Seven Democrats, including Sen. Elizabeth Warren, want those reforms to be permanent. The Public Service Loan Forgiveness (PSLF) program is a hot topic for advocates and lawmakers when it comes to student-loan reforms. The program is supposed to forgive student debt for public servants, like teachers and nurses, after ten years of qualifying payments, but it ran up a 98% denial rate in what time period? or is it still?.That's why the Education Department announced an overhaul of the program last month to give public servants the relief they deserve through temporary measures that Democrats want to make permanent.On Monday, seven Senate Democrats, including Massachusetts Sen. Elizabeth Warren and Senate Majority Whip Dick Durbin, wrote a letter to Education Secretary Miguel Cardona requesting reforms to student-loan repayment and forgiveness programs. One of their requests focused on the Education Department's PSLF overhaul last month, that implemented a limited-time waiver through October 31, 2022, to allow borrowers to count payments from any federal-loan programs or repayment plans toward loan forgiveness through PSLF, including programs and plans that were not previously eligible.The department said that waiver alone would bring 550,000 borrowers closer to student-debt relief automatically, including 22,000 borrowers who will be immediately eligible for relief without any action on their part, totaling $1.74 billion in forgiveness.The lawmakers wrote that help should not end in October of next year."After this time, borrowers will still need help navigating donut holes that exist in the current program," the letter said. "We believe this is consistent with the goals of the Department's issue paper, but draft regulations have not been presented yet," the letter added, referring to the department's regulatory agenda for the student-loan industry released over the summer.Weeks after the department announced its overhaul, the American Federation of Teachers (AFT) announced it reached a settlement with the department on PSLF that will require the department to revisit the thousands of applications that were denied student-loan forgiveness. Randi Weingarten, president of AFT, told Insider in an interview on Tuesday that her settlement and the Education Department overhaul worked "in tandem" to deliver on the promise of PSLF."This is huge and based upon these new principles and a correct reading by a department that wants to actually follow the intent of PSLF, we believe there's going to be overwhelming numbers of people who will now get a promise that was made to them in 2007 by President Bush and Congress," Weingarten said. "Which is: you work for the public sector for ten years, you pay ten years of your student debt, and the rest is forgiven."The seven Democrats urged for early implementation of any considered reforms; the urgency of which is ramping up as student-loan payments are expected to resume on February 1. FedLoan Servicing, the student-loan company that manages PSLF, is shutting down its services at the end of this year, meaning the millions of borrowers seeking forgiveness through the program will have to be transferred to a new company in a matter of months, which will present a major administrative burden for the Education Department.And with Biden's $1.75 trillion Build Back Better (BBB) framework cutting out free community college - the only measure that would have lessened the $1.7 trillion student debt crisis - lawmakers believe student debt cancellation is the best, and quickest, way to provide relief."I think given how much BBB has been slashed there is more opportunity than ever to bring the heat on Biden to cancel student loans," New York Rep. Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez said last week. "He doesn't need Manchin's permission for that and now that his agenda is thinly sliced he needs to step up his executive action game and show his commitment to deliver for people."Read the original article on Business Insider.....»»

Category: topSource: businessinsiderNov 3rd, 2021

Thousands of student-loan borrowers are getting a second chance at debt forgiveness after being "cruelly denied" under Betsy DeVos

The American Federation of Teachers reached a settlement with the Education Dept. requiring reconsideration of public servants denied debt relief. Students toss their hats at Wesleyan University's commencement ceremony in 2018. Eduardo Munoz Alvarez/Getty Images The American Federation of Teachers reached a settlement with the Education Dept. on student-loan forgiveness. The settlement requires the department to revisit denied applications to the Public Service Loan Forgiveness program. The lawsuit targeted Trump's administration, which ran up a 98% denial rate for the program. A week after the Education Department announced reforms to a program that forgives student debt for public servants like firefighters, teachers, and nonprofit workers after ten years of monthly payments, a teacher's union announced a victory that's taking those reforms a step further.The American Federation of Teachers (AFT) announced on Wednesday that it reached a settlement with the Education Department on a 2019 case - Weingarten v. DeVos - to hold President Donald Trump's administration accountable for its mismanagement of the Public Service Loan Forgiveness (PSLF) program. The first borrowers who completed ten years of payments should have become eligible for debt forgiveness in 2017, but under Education Secretary Betsy DeVos, the program ran up a 98% denial rate, which continued into the beginning of President Joe Biden's term.The settlement will require the Education Department to revisit the thousands of applications that were denied student-loan forgiveness. Specifically, it will require the department to:Reconsider, upon request, the application of any borrower who was denied forgiveness through PSLF, and those borrowers will now have an official process to submit those requests;Review, within 90 days from today, all PSLF applications denied prior to November 2020;And give borrowers with denied applications a detailed response as to why they were denied, and who they should reach out to with any questions."Congress pledged relief to those who dedicated their lives to serving the public, but 98 percent got a debt sentence instead," AFT President Randi Weingarten said in a statement. "Today is a day of vindication for the millions of borrowers who took the government at its word but were cruelly denied through no fault of their own."The settlement will also completely discharge $400,000 in student debt for the eight plaintiffs in the case, who made their qualifying PSLF payments but got denied.Last week, the Education Department announced an overhaul of PSLF that would implement a limited-time waiver through October 31, 2022, that will allow borrowers to count payments from any federal-loan programs or repayment plans toward loan forgiveness through PSLF, including programs and plans that were not previously eligible.That waiver alone would bring 550,000 borrowers closer to student-debt relief automatically, and the department also said it would review denied applications before October of next year, which is not as expansive as Wednesday's settlement.Insider reported earlier this month that if PSLF had continued on its current track, it might see minor improvements but still only approve 20% of borrowers for forgiveness by 2026; the department's overhaul, along with the settlement, will likely set borrowers on a much better track."This agreement unravels the Gordian knot of PSLF's implementation and shows the power of advocacy and collective action," Weingarten said. "It represents a game-changing victory for the millions of educators, nurses, public employees and other AFT members yoked to crushing monthly repayments that have upended their lives."Read the original article on Business Insider.....»»

Category: topSource: businessinsiderOct 13th, 2021

70,000 student-loan borrowers had debt wiped out after recent reforms. Here"s how to know if you"re eligible.

Since Biden reformed Public Service Loan Forgiveness last fall, thousands of teachers, military, and other nonprofit or public workers can get relief. College graduation.Andy Sacks/Getty Images The Public Service Loan Forgiveness program forgives debt for public servants after 10 years of payments. Due to recent reforms to the program, 70,000 borrowers have gotten relief. Here's how to know if you qualify for the program, and what the reforms could mean for you. The Public Service Loan Forgiveness (PSLF) program, which forgives student debt for workers like teachers, firefighters, and nonprofits, isn't working perfectly. But reforms are underway, and thousands of borrowers have already reaped the benefits.On Thursday, the Education Department released data on PSLF and found 70,000 student-loan borrowers have successfully had their remaining debt balances wiped out since October. The program, created in 2007 to give student debt relief to public servants like government workers and teachers after ten years of qualifying payments, ran up a 98% denial rate leading up to President Joe Biden's presidency, which is why the department implemented reforms three months ago to fix the flawed program."Over the last year 70,000 first responders, teachers, service members & other public servants received debt forgiveness, 4x the previous total," Under Secretary of Education James Kvaal wrote on Twitter on Thursday. "We are proud to have their back."Before determining if you can get student-loan forgiveness through PSLF, you need to first ensure you meet these three conditions:Be employed at a US federal, state, local, or tribal government or nonprofit organizationWork full-timeAnd have direct federal loans.If you meet those conditions, and make 120 months — or ten years — of payments on your debt, then you are eligible to receive loan forgiveness of any remaining balance. Here's how the Education Department's recent reforms to the program could ease the application process for you, along with additional steps you might need to take.For a limited time, you can count all prior payments toward forgivenessThe waiver, which will run through October 31, 2022, will give you credit for prior payments made to any program that would otherwise not count toward PSLF, as long as you have met the initial three qualifying conditions. If you already have direct loans, or consolidated your debt into direct loans, all you need to do is submit a PSLF form on or before October 31, 2022, to have prior ineligible payments — like those made under the Federal Family Education Loan (FFEL) Program— counted toward your loan forgiveness progress.If your loans are not yet consolidated into a federal direct loan — for example, you may have a number of federal student loans under different loan companies — that's an action you need to take first before submitting the PSLF form, and if your waiver is approved, the Education Department will automatically adjust your payment counts. Also note that this change applies to loans under the Federal Family Education Loan (FFEL) Program, which previously did not qualify for PSLF.Service members get expanded reliefIf you're a current or former service member, months spent on active duty will now count toward PSLF, even if you put your loans on deferment or forbearance during that time. According to the Education Department, Federal Student Aid will contact you if you are eligible to provide additional information on taking advantage of this change.In addition, the department will automatically give you credit for PSLF if you are a service member, meaning you will not have to apply and submit paperwork on your own. This will be done by matching Education Department data with information held by other federal agencies regarding service members in the workforce.Previously denied PSLF applications will get a second lookLeading up to these reforms, a lot of borrowers were mistakenly denied relief. If you believe you are one of those borrowers, there's no action you need to take as of now. The Education Department is conducting a review of all denied applications to the program, including processing errors the department may have made. Upon completion of that review, if you believe your application was wrongfully denied, you will be able to use a temporary reconsideration process to receive a secondary review of your application next year.The department is also considering implementing a permanent reconsideration process in the long-term and estimates 550,000 borrowers who had previously seen their applications denied or struggled to access relief could benefit through the new changes to the program.Read the original article on Business Insider.....»»

Category: topSource: businessinsiderJan 21st, 2022

Thousands of student-loan borrowers are getting their debt wiped out. Here"s how to know if you"re one of them.

Navient just reached a $1.85 billion settlement with 39 attorneys general, including $1.7 billion in student-debt forgiveness for private borrowers. Getty Images Student-loan company Navient reached a $1.85 billion settlement with 39 attorneys general on Thursday. Navient will cancel $1.7 billion in private student debt for 66,000 borrowers, along with $95 million in restitution payments for 350,000. Here's how to know if you are eligible for that relief. You could be one of the thousands of student-loan borrowers who will receive relief from one of the largest, and most controversial, student-loan companies in the country.Navient reached a $1.85 billion settlement on Thursday with a coalition of 39 attorneys general to resolve allegations of "widespread unfair, deceptive, and abusive student loan servicing practices and abuses in originating predatory student loans," according to the press release. The attorneys general said Navient steered student-loan borrowers into deeper debt instead of setting them on track for affordable repayment plans. They also claimed Navient originated "predatory" private student-loans for borrowers who attended for-profit schools regardless of their abilities to afford paying those loans back.Navient denied any wrongdoing, saying in a press release its decision "to resolve these matters, which were based on unfounded claims, allows us to avoid the additional burden, expense, time and distraction to prevail in court." Within the terms of the settlement, Navient is required to cancel $1.7 billion for 66,000 borrowers with private student loans, and it will distribute $95 million in restitution payments — about $260 each — to about 350,000 federal borrowers who were placed in long-term forbearances.Here's how to know if you qualify for that student-debt relief.Do I qualify for restitution payments?If you live in one of these states:AZ, CA, CO, CT, DC, DE, FL, GA, HI, IA, IL, IN, KY, LA, MA, MD, ME, MN, MO, NC, NE, NJ, NM, NV, NY, OH, OR, PA, TN, VA, WA, and WIAnd you meet these terms:Lived in a participating state since January 2017;Entered repayment on a direct-loan program before January 2015;Had at least one federal loan eligible for income-driven repayment;Had at least two consecutive years of loan forbearance between October 2009 and January 2017;Didn't enroll in income-driven repayment prior to forbearance;If you do, you likely qualify for restitution payments. You will not need to take any action to receive this relief. In the spring, if you are eligible, you will receive a postcard in the mail to the current address on file with the Education Department.Do I qualify for private student-loan cancellation?If you live in one of the states included in the settlement, plus:Arkansas, Kansas, Michigan, Rhode Island, South Carolina, Vermont, West Virginia, or a military address postal codeAnd you meet these terms:Took out a private subprime student loan — loans for borrowers with low credit scores — through Sallie Mae (Navient's predecessor) between 2002 and 2014;Had more than seven consecutive months of late payments prior to June 30, 2021;Or received a loan to attend a for-profit school on this list;If you meet these terms, you likely qualify for loan forgiveness. As with the restitution payments, you will not need to take any action to receive relief. Navient will notify eligible private loan borrowers of their forgiveness in writing by July 2022.Read the original article on Business Insider.....»»

Category: topSource: businessinsiderJan 14th, 2022

416,000 student-loan borrowers are getting $1.8 billion in relief through a "landmark settlement" with Navient

A major student-loan lender will cancel $1.7 billion in debt for 66,000 borrowers, and pay $95 million in restitution to about 350,000 more. College graduation.Rattanakun Thonbun/EyeEm 39 states' attorneys general reached a $1.85B settlement with Navient to resolve claims of wrongdoing. They claimed the student-loan company misled borrowers and steered them into deeper debt. Navient denied any wrongdoing and said its decision to settle was to avoid expenses and time in court. Thousands of student-loan borrowers could get debt relief from one of the nation's largest student-loan companies.On Thursday, 39 states' attorneys general announced a $1.85 billion settlement with student-loan company Navient to resolve allegations of "widespread unfair, deceptive, and abusive student loan servicing practices and abuses in originating predatory student loans," according to a press release.Specifically, the settlement resolves claims that Navient steered student-loan borrowers into deeper debt instead of setting them on track for affordable repayment plans, along with originating "predatory" private student-loans for borrowers who attended for-profit schools regardless of their abilities to afford paying those loans back.As part of the settlement, Navient will cancel $1.7 billion for 66,000 borrowers with private student loans, and it will distribute $95 million in restitution payments — about $260 each — to about 350,000 federal borrowers who were placed in long-term forbearances.Massachusetts Attorney General Maura Healy told reporters eligible borrowers will not have to do anything to receive this relief — once the settlement is approved, payments will be sent in the mail later this year."Navient repeatedly and deliberately put profits ahead of its borrowers – it engaged in deceptive and abusive practices, targeted students who it knew would struggle to pay loans back, and placed an unfair burden on people trying to improve their lives through education," Pennsylvania Attorney General Josh Shapiro said in a statement.Navient denied any wrongdoing in a press release, saying it "expressly denies violating any law, including consumer-protection laws, or causing borrower harm. Navient also has agreed to maintain servicing practices that support borrower success.""The company's decision to resolve these matters, which were based on unfounded claims, allows us to avoid the additional burden, expense, time and distraction to prevail in court," Navient 's Chief Legal Officer Mark Heleen said. "Navient is and has been continually focused on helping student loan borrowers understand and select the right payment options to fit their needs."Shapiro responded to Navient's statement in a press briefing, saying that "it doesn't matter what they don't admit or do admit — actions speak louder than words."Along with student-loan relief, the settlement also requires Navient to explain to borrowers the options and benefits they have under income-driven repayment plans before placing them on forbearance, along with notifying borrowers of the Education Department's recent reforms to the Public Service Loan Forgiveness (PSLF) program, which forgives student debt for public servants after ten years of qualifying payments.This settlement was encouraging news to lawmakers who have held Navient in their sights for decades over treatment of borrowers. Massachusetts Sen. Elizabeth Warren wrote on Twitter that the settlement is "a major step to deliver relief for borrowers & hold Navient accountable."—Elizabeth Warren (@SenWarren) January 13, 2022Navient was one of the three student-loan companies who announced it would be ending its federal loan-servicing contract this year, and Warren told Insider at the time the student-loan industry would be "far better off" without them. She has spent decades working to hold Navient accountable, and told its CEO Jack Remondi that he should be fired for the abuses that happened under his leadership.Advocates welcomed the settlement news, as well."Borrowers may not be able to enjoy Navient CEO Jack Remondi's $8 million salary, his three homes, or his use of the company's private jet," Mike Pierce, executive director of the Student Borrower Protection Center, said in a statement. "But they can rest a little bit easier knowing that a measure of justice has been served."Read the original article on Business Insider.....»»

Category: topSource: businessinsiderJan 13th, 2022

Navient to pay $145 million to settle litigation with state attorneys general

Shares of Navient Corp. climbed 1.6% in midday trading Thursday, after the student loan management company said it will pay $145 million as part of a settlement agreement with state attorneys general to resolve multistate litigation and investigations. The company said a portion of the payment will reimburse states for their costs while the rest will be used by states to provide payments for certain student loan borrowers. Navient said it estimates that these costs are "substantially lower" than expected costs of ongoing state-by-state litigation and investigation. Navient said it will cancel loan balances of approximately 66,000 borrowers with certain qualifying private education loans originated largely between 2002 and 2010, and later defaulted and charged off. As part of the agreements, Navient said it "expressly denies" the violation of any law, including consumer-protection laws. "The company's decision to resolve these matters, which were based on unfounded claims, allows us to avoid the additional burden, expense, time and distraction to prevail in court," said Navient Chief Legal Officer Mark Heleen. The stock has rallied 12.9% over the past three months, while the S&P 500 has gained 8.3%.Market Pulse Stories are Rapid-fire, short news bursts on stocks and markets as they move. Visit MarketWatch.com for more information on this news......»»

Category: topSource: marketwatchJan 13th, 2022

President Joe Biden asks student-loan borrowers to "do their part" in preparing for payments to resume on May 1 as pressure for broad cancellation ramps up again

Biden gave student-loan borrowers an additional three months of relief. Advocates say the president should use that extra time to cancel student debt. President Joe Biden.Drew Angerer/Getty Images Biden extended a student-loan-payment pause an additional three months through May 1. He said borrowers should use this extra time to prepare for the resumption of payments. But some lawmakers and advocates said this extra time should be used to cancel student debt. President Joe Biden gave 43 million federal student-loan borrowers a Christmas gift of three additional months of relief last month. While the president said borrowers should use that extra time to prepare for payments to resume on May 1, some lawmakers and advocates said it should instead be used to cancel student debt.On December 22, the Education Department announced it will be moving the date student-loan payments are scheduled to resume from February 1 to May 1, citing the Omicron coronavirus variant as the primary reason for the change. While this announcement did not specify whether it would be the "final" extension, contrasting the announcement in August, Biden urged federal borrowers in a statement to use the extra time to prepare for repayment in 90 days."As we are taking this action, I'm asking all student loan borrowers to do their part as well: take full advantage of the Department of Education's resources to help you prepare for payments to resume; look at options to lower your payments through income-based repayment plans; explore public service loan forgiveness; and make sure you are vaccinated and boosted when eligible," Biden said in December. Education Secretary Miguel Cardona echoed that sentiment, saying in a statement the department will "continue to provide tools and supports to borrowers so they can enter into the repayment plan that is responsive to their financial situation, such as an income-driven repayment plan." This extension comes alongside the nearly $12 billion in student debt Biden has canceled for targeted groups of borrowers, such as those defrauded by for-profit schools, since he took office. But advocates and some lawmakers say it's not enough to tackle the $1.7 trillion crisis.'Americans cannot be crushed by student debt' during COVID-19Leading lawmakers on broad student-debt cancellation applauded Biden's extension of the payment pause. Senate Majority Leader Chuck Schumer, Massachusetts Sen. Elizabeth Warren, and Massachusetts Rep. Ayanna Pressley said in a statement that the pause allowed borrowers to "make ends meet" and afford basic necessities, but they still want Biden to deliver on his campaign promise of loan forgiveness."We continue to call on President Biden to take executive action to cancel $50,000 in student debt, which will help close the racial wealth gap for borrowers and accelerate our economic recovery," the lawmakers said. —Chuck Schumer (@SenSchumer) December 23, 2021 Student-loan forgiveness advocates agreed. Natalia Abrams, president of the Student Debt Crisis Center, said in a statement the Omicron variant is "a scary reminder that the pandemic is still a serious concern and Americans cannot be crushed by student debt as they shoulder this health and economic crisis."While Biden promised during his campaign to approve $10,000 in student-loan forgiveness, he has yet to fulfill that promise, and some lawmakers said it could cost Democrats the majority in the 2022 midterm elections. New York Rep. Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez said last month that it's "actually delusional" to think Democrats can get re-elected if they don't act on priorities for voters, like student debt.Vice President Kamala Harris responded to advocates' concerns in a "Face the Nation" interview late last month, saying the administration must continue to be "vigilant" on the topic, but she did not provide a specific way to get relief to borrowers."Well, I think that we have to continue to do what we're doing and figure out how we can creatively relieve the pressure that students are feeling because of their student-loan debt," Harris said.Read the original article on Business Insider.....»»

Category: topSource: businessinsiderJan 3rd, 2022

Biden asks student-loan borrowers to "do their part" in preparing for payments to resume on May 1 as pressure for broad cancellation ramps up again

Biden gave student-loan borrowers an additional 3 months of relief, and advocates say the president should use that extra time to cancel student debt. President Joe Biden.Drew Angerer/Getty Images Biden extended the student-loan payment pause an additional three months through May 1. He said borrowers should use this extra time to prepare for the resumption of payments. But some lawmakers and advocates said this extra time should be used to cancel student debt. President Joe Biden gave 43 million federal student-loan borrowers a Christmas gift of three additional months of relief. While the president said borrowers should use that extra time to prepare for payments to resume on May 1, lawmakers and advocates said that time should instead be used to cancel student debt.On December 22, the Education Department announced it will be moving the date student-loan payments are scheduled to resume from February 1 to May 1, citing the Omicron variant as the primary reason for the change. While this announcement did not specify this will be the "final" extension, contrasting the announcement in August, Biden urged federal borrowers in a statement to use this extra time to prepare for repayment in 90 days."As we are taking this action, I'm asking all student loan borrowers to do their part as well: take full advantage of the Department of Education's resources to help you prepare for payments to resume; look at options to lower your payments through income-based repayment plans; explore public service loan forgiveness; and make sure you are vaccinated and boosted when eligible," Biden said. Education Secretary Miguel Cardona echoed that sentiment, saying in a statement the department will "continue to provide tools and supports to borrowers so they can enter into the repayment plan that is responsive to their financial situation, such as an income-driven repayment plan." This extension comes alongside the nearly $12 billion in student debt Biden has canceled for targeted groups of borrowers, like those defrauded by for-profit schools, since he took office. But advocates and lawmakers say it's not enough to tackle the $1.7 trillion crisis.'Americans cannot be crushed by student debt' during COVID-19Leading lawmakers on broad student-debt cancellation applauded Biden's extension of the payment pause. Senate Majority Leader Chuck Schumer, Massachusetts Sen. Elizabeth Warren, and Massachusetts Rep. Ayanna Pressley said in a statement that the pause allowed borrowers to "make ends meet" and afford basic necessities, but they still want Biden to deliver on his campaign promise of loan forgiveness."We continue to call on President Biden to take executive action to cancel $50,000 in student debt, which will help close the racial wealth gap for borrowers and accelerate our economic recovery," the lawmakers said. —Chuck Schumer (@SenSchumer) December 23, 2021 Student-loan forgiveness advocates agreed. Natalia Abrams, president of the Student Debt Crisis Center, said in a statement the Omicron variant is "a scary reminder that the pandemic is still a serious concern and Americans cannot be crushed by student debt as they shoulder this health and economic crisis."While Biden promised during his campaign to approve $10,000 in student-loan forgiveness, he has yet to fulfill that promise and some lawmakers said it could cost Democrats the majority after midterm elections. New York Rep. Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez said last month that it's "actually delusional" to think Democrats can get re-elected if they don't act on priorities for voters, like student debt.Vice President Kamala Harris responded to Ocasio-Cortez's concerns on a Face the Nation interview, saying the administration must continue to be "vigilant" on the topic, but did not provide a specific way to get relief to borrowers."Well, I think that we have to continue to do what we're doing and figure out how we can creatively relieve the pressure that students are feeling because of their student-loan debt," Harris said.Read the original article on Business Insider.....»»

Category: topSource: businessinsiderJan 3rd, 2022

HUD Looks Back at 2021 Accomplishments

The U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development (HUD) this year took bold action in pursuit of the agency’s mission to create strong, sustainable, inclusive communities and quality affordable homes. These actions aligned with key Biden-Harris Administration priorities including ensuring equity, removing barriers to homeownership, expanding the nation’s housing supply and keeping Americans housed. Below […] The post HUD Looks Back at 2021 Accomplishments appeared first on RISMedia. The U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development (HUD) this year took bold action in pursuit of the agency’s mission to create strong, sustainable, inclusive communities and quality affordable homes. These actions aligned with key Biden-Harris Administration priorities including ensuring equity, removing barriers to homeownership, expanding the nation’s housing supply and keeping Americans housed. Below are highlights of some of the agency’s actions from 2021: Launched a Whole-of-Government Effort to Ensure all Americans are Treated Fairly in the Home Appraisals Process On June 1, President Biden tasked Secretary Fudge with leading a first-of-its-kind interagency initiative to address inequity in home appraisals. In partnership with the Domestic Policy Council, HUD created the Property Appraisal and Valuation Equity (PAVE) Task Force, bringing together 15 federal agencies to identify and utilize all levers at their disposal to root out discrimination in the appraisal and home-buying process. The Task Force has been exploring the extent, causes and impacts of misvaluation faced by communities of color, gathering input from industry, advocates and other stakeholders, and developing new policy approaches around guidance and enforcement. This work will be presented to the President and the public early next year, documenting the scope of the problem and providing detailed, actionable agency commitments and recommendations for next steps. Launched All-Hands-on-Deck Effort to Address Homelessness Crisis On Sept. 20, Secretary Fudge launched House America, a national partnership with other Administration officials, mayors, county officials, governors and tribal nation leaders across the nation. The plan works with those leaders to use American Rescue Plan (ARP) resources to re-house at least 100,000 people experiencing homelessness and add at least 20,000 new affordable and permanent supportive housing units to address homelessness into the development pipeline by the end of 2022. Eviction and Foreclosure Prevention HUD helped prevent eviction of HUD-assisted households and stabilize families struggling because of the COVID-19 pandemic by deploying the historic funding made available under the Consolidated Appropriations Act and ARP to help keep families stably housed. HUD worked closely with the White House and the Treasury Department, providing the Department’s expertise to help FAQs and best practices for the Emergency Rental Assistance Program. HUD also helped homeowners who may have been behind on their mortgages stay in their homes and worked with Treasury to engage stakeholders around the utilization of the Homeowner Assistance Fund and its integration with new policies released by the Federal Housing Administration (FHA) to help struggling homeowners keep their homes. Stood Up a New $5 Billion HOME-ARP Program to Assist Some of The Country’s Most Vulnerable Populations HUD successfully stood up a brand-new $5 billion program to assist some of the country’s most vulnerable populations including individuals or households who are homeless or at risk of homelessness. The Office of Community Planning and Development has made funding available to 651 state and local governments, which will be used to reduce homelessness and increase housing stability by providing funding for rental housing development, acquisition and development of non-congregate shelter, tenant-based rental assistance and supportive services. HUD released a portion of grantee administrative funds at the outset of the program to better support the planning activities that lead to effective use of grant funding. Removed Barriers to Homeownership for Those With Student Loan Debt The Federal Housing Administration (FHA) updated its policy on student loan monthly payment calculations to remove barriers and provide more access to affordable single-family FHA-insured mortgage financing for creditworthy individuals with student loan debt, which has disproportionate impact on communities of color. The updates removed the previous requirement that lenders calculate a borrower’s student loan monthly payment of 1% of the outstanding student loan balance for student loans that are not fully amortizing. The new policy bases the monthly payment on the actual student loan payment, more closely aligning FHA policies with industry standards. Set the Stage for Increased Fair Housing and Lending Enforcement and Access HUD signed a memorandum of understanding (MOU) with the Federal Housing Finance Agency (FHFA) to kick off a historic collaboration on fair housing and fair lending enforcement and oversight engagement with the FHFA-regulated entities including Fannie Mae, Freddie Mac and the Federal Home Loan Banks. This comprehensive effort will ensure deeper collaboration on fair housing investigations and enable data sharing to help strengthen and affirmatively further fair housing for the mortgage industry. In addition, HUD Published a legal memorandum making it clear that certain Special Purpose Credit Programs (SPCPs) that are lawful under the Equal Credit Opportunity Act (ECOA) generally are not barred by the Fair Housing Act, allowing their use by lenders to expand access to credit in underserved communities. Took Action to Increase Housing Supply and Access to Affordable Housing HUD restarted its Housing Finance Agency (HFA) risk-sharing program with the Treasury’s Federal Financing Bank (FFB) on Sept. 1 to develop more affordable rental homes. The program allows HFAs to obtain FHA insurance on multifamily mortgages they underwrite, with HUD and the HFA sharing the risk of any potential loss. FHA anticipates that approximately 20,000 affordable rental homes will be created or preserved through the program through 2027. HUD also made more single-family homes available to individuals, families and non-profit organizations—rather than large investors—by prioritizing homeownership and limiting sale to large investors of certain FHA-insured and HUD-owned properties. HUD also released new research on actions that state and local governments can take to increase their housing supply and is developing a Housing Supply Toolkit filled with easy-to-implement strategies for grantees to deploy HUD resources to address supply and affordability challenges that have been deepened by the pandemic. Restored the Affirmatively Furthering Fair Housing (AFFH) Requirement The Department published an interim final rule (IFR) that went into effect on July 31 to restore the implementation of the Fair Housing Act’s AFFH requirement. Under the restored AFFH regulatory definition in the IFR, HUD funding recipients must regularly certify compliance with the Fair Housing Act’s AFFH requirement and commit to taking steps to remedy their fair housing issues in making such certifications. The IFR helps HUD, 3,747 public housing authorities, and 1,200 state and local government grantees in the CDBG, HOME and HOPWA programs, fulfill their AFFH obligations under the Fair Housing Act. Historically Strong Mutual Mortgage Insurance (MMI) Fund HUD announced a historically strong Mutual Mortgage Insurance Fund Report showing that, in addition to its emphasis on delivering relief options to homeowners financially impacted by the COVID-19 pandemic, FHA continued to deliver on its mission of enabling homeownership for first-time and low- and moderate-income, and households of color. The fund remains well positioned to withstand future economic events and endure the outcomes from the pandemic-induced delinquencies that remain in forbearance or are seriously delinquent. The percentage of first-time homebuyers using FHA insurance reached a new high, the share of mortgages insured by FHA to minority borrowers reached almost 42% of all FHA forward mortgage insurance endorsements. FHA served double the percentage of Black and Hispanic borrowers when compared to those served through mortgage originations by the rest of the housing market this past fiscal year. Protected the LGBTQ+ Community From Housing Discrimination On Feb. 11, HUD announced that it would interpret the Fair Housing Act to bar discrimination on the bases of sexual orientation and gender identity, consistent with President Biden’s Executive Order 13988 and the Supreme Court’s ruling in Bostock v. Clayton County. This decision has expanded the protections of the Fair Housing Act to a community that has historically been subject to discrimination. Through its partner FHIPs and FHAPs agencies, HUD has processed 235 cases alleging sex discrimination due to gender identity and sexual orientation last year, nearly twice as many cases than last year. Developed and Released HUD’s Climate Action Plan On Nov. 11, HUD released a comprehensive, agency-wide Climate Action Plan, which details a strategy to reduce the agency’s energy and carbon footprint and put our nation’s communities on the path to building more equitable, efficient and sustainable housing infrastructure. The Climate Action Plan was developed in response to President Biden’s Executive Order on Tackling the Climate Crisis at Home and Abroad. In keeping with the executive order, as well as the President’s Justice40 Initiativeto advance environmental justice and racial equity, HUD will implement a broad approach to the climate crisis that reduces climate pollution; increases resilience to the impacts of climate change; protects public health; delivers environmental justice; and spurs well-paying union jobs and economic growth. Helped Communities Rebuild From Disasters In November, HUD announced the allocation of more than $2 billion in disaster funding for communities in 10 states covering 15 major disasters—including wildfires in California, hurricanes in Louisiana, and earthquakes in Puerto Rico. And will keep working with our partners to deliver relief for other communities rebuilding in the wake of natural disasters—including tornado victims in Kentucky. Additionally, HUD has taken meaningful action to reset its relationship with Puerto Rico and the U.S. Virgin Islands and to address ongoing recovery and resilience needs. This includes obligating long-awaited disaster recovery funds and removing onerous restrictions placed on the grants, such as incremental grant obligations, Federal Financial Monitor review, and more. Now, 90% of promised funds have been obligated to Puerto Rico, an increase of $16B since the start of the Administration. Source: HUD The post HUD Looks Back at 2021 Accomplishments appeared first on RISMedia......»»

Category: realestateSource: rismediaJan 3rd, 2022

Harris says Americans under the pressures of student-loan debt "are literally making decisions about whether they can have a family, whether they can buy a home"

Harris said the administration had to "figure out how we can creatively relieve the pressure that students are feeling because of their" debt. Vice President Kamala Harris on CBS's "Face the Nation" in December.CBS News/"Face the Nation" Kamala Harris said the White House was seeking a way to "creatively" address student debt. The Biden administration in December halted student-loan payments until May 1. She said the administration must figure out how to "relieve the pressure that students are feeling." Vice President Kamala Harris said in an interview that aired Sunday that the Biden administration was working to find a way to "creatively" address student debt, citing the pressures it causes for Americans."I think that we have to continue to do what we're doing and figure out how we can creatively relieve the pressure that students are feeling because of their student-loan debt," Harris told CBS News' Margaret Brennan on "Face the Nation."Harris said Secretary of Education Miguel Cardona was "working on what we can do and must do frankly to relieve the pressures of student-loan debt.""Graduates and former students across our country are literally making decisions about whether they can have a family, whether they can buy a home," she said, adding that she previously had student-loan debt."It's no small matter, and we need to figure out a way to relieve debt," she said. "So it's a fair issue in terms of the seriousness of the issue."As the Omicron coronavirus variant caused COVID-19 cases in the US to rise in December, the Biden administration extended the federal pause on student-loan payments, allowing borrowers to avoid paying until May 1."What I believe we must do," Harris said, "is continue to be vigilant and fighting for folks who have a right to be seen and their circumstances to be heard and understood because we have the ability to actually alleviate the burdens that people are carrying that make it difficult for them to get through the day or in the month."In a statement on Wednesday, Cardona said the extension of the repayment pause "will provide critical relief to borrowers who continue to face financial hardships as a result of the pandemic, and will allow our Administration to assess the impacts of Omicron on student borrowers.""As we prepare for the return to repayment in May, we will continue to provide tools and supports to borrowers so they can enter into the repayment plan that is responsive to their financial situation, such as an income-driven repayment plan," he added.Some Democratic lawmakers, including Senate Majority Leader Chuck Schumer, have called on the administration to go further than delaying debt payments, asking President Joe Biden to cancel $50,000 in student-loan debt per person.During his presidential campaign, Biden pledged to forgive "a minimum" of $10,000 in student-loan debt per person."Young people and other student debt holders bore the brunt of the last crisis," he said in a tweet in March 2020. "It shouldn't happen again."Read the original article on Business Insider.....»»

Category: dealsSource: nytDec 27th, 2021

Harris says Americans under the pressures of student loan debt "are literally making decisions about whether they can have a family, whether they can buy a home"

Harris said the administration has to "figure out how we can creatively relieve the pressure that students are feeling because of their student loan debt." Vice President Kamala Harris is interviewed on CBS' "Face the Nation" in December 2021.CBS News/"Face the Nation" Vice President Kamala Harris said the White House was seeking a way to "creatively" address student debt.  The Biden administration in December announced student loan payments would be halted until May 1. Harris said "we have to continue to do what we're doing and figure out how we can creatively relieve the pressure that students are feeling."  Vice President Kamala Harris in an interview that aired Sunday said the Biden administration was working to find a way to "creatively" address student debt, citing the pressures it causes for Americans. "I think that we have to continue to do what we're doing and figure out how we can creatively relieve the pressure that students are feeling because of their student loan debt," Harris told CBS News' Margaret Brennan during an interview on "Face the Nation." Harris said that Secretary of Education Miguel Cardona was "working on what we can do and must do frankly to relieve the pressures of student loan debt." "Graduates and former students across our country are literally making decisions about whether they can have a family, whether they can buy a home," she said, adding that she previously had student loan debt."And it's no small matter, and we need to figure out a way to relieve debt. So it's a fair issue in terms of the seriousness of the issue,"she said.The administration of President Joe Biden in December extended the federal pause on student loan payments, allowing borrowers to avoid paying until May 1 as the Omicron variant of the coronavirus causes COVID-19 cases in the US to rise."Voting we've discussed, it is a very big issue, and what I believe we must do is continue to be vigilant and fighting for folks who have a right to be seen and their circumstances to be heard and understood because we have the ability to actually alleviate the burdens that people are carrying that make it difficult for them to get through the day or in the month," Harris added."This additional extension of the repayment pause will provide critical relief to borrowers who continue to face financial hardships as a result of the pandemic, and will allow our Administration to assess the impacts of Omicron on student borrowers," Education Secretary Miguel Cardona said in a December 22 statement."As we prepare for the return to repayment in May, we will continue to provide tools and supports to borrowers so they can enter into the repayment plan that is responsive to their financial situation, such as an income-driven repayment plan," he added.Some Democratic lawmakers, including Senate Majority Leader Chuck Schumer, have called on the Biden administration to go futher than delaying debt payments, asking the president to cancel $50,000 in student loan debt.During his 2020 campaign for president, Biden pledged to forgive "a minimum" of $10,000 of student loan debt per person."Young people and other student debt holders bore the brunt of the last crisis. It shouldn't happen again," he said in a March 22, 2020 tweet.So far, he hasn't followed through on that promise.Read the original article on Business Insider.....»»

Category: dealsSource: nytDec 26th, 2021

Staggering student-loan debt burdens hundreds of congressional staffers

Hundreds of Capitol Hill staffers are bogged down by student-loan debt. One aide has been paying for 32 years. Clearly it's a source of daily anxiety. Sen. Elizabeth Warren, Rep. Ilhan Omar, and Rep. Ayanna Pressley are among the Democrats pushing the Biden administration to cancel student loan debt.AP Photo/Andrew Harnik At least 360 senior staffers working on Capitol Hill in 2020 and 2021 have student-loan debt. Congressional staffers say living with student-loan debt gives them "daily anxiety." Democratic lawmakers are pursuing multiple bills to provide student-loan-debt relief. Lawmakers can't agree on how to save college students from years of stifling loan debt. It's an ideological tug-of-war that can't end soon enough for millions of Americans.It's also a fight that's personal for many congressional staffers who work under those members, and who are still paying off the bills for their own educations — with some having paid over decades.An Insider analysis of congressional financial disclosures for 2020 and 2021 found that Congress itself was profoundly affected: About 360 high-ranking staffers owed money on student loans. Dozens of these staffers either work for House or Senate leadership, on committees with jurisdiction over student-debt relief, or both. Together, these congressional staffers are juggling more than 500 outstanding student loans. Even for those earning good salaries by national standards, such loans can sap available resources in the ever-expensive Washington, DC, area, and even prompt some staff to consider leaving public service for more lucrative jobs in the private sector and lobbying industry.Some of these influential aides have the ears of leaders on both sides of the debt-cancellation effort. Debt-burdened staffers tied to Democratic supporters of wiping the slate clean include those who work for Senate Majority Leader Chuck Schumer of New York; three lawyers who work for House Democratic Whip Jim Clyburn of South Carolina; and an education-policy wonk who works for Rep. Ayanna Pressley of Massachusetts.  Debt-burdened staffers tied to anti-loan-forgiveness GOP bosses include two lawyers who work for Sen. Richard Burr of North Carolina, the ranking member of the Senate Committee on Health, Education, Labor, and Pensions; a policy director and a tax lawyer who works for Senate Republican Whip John Thune of South Dakota; and a lawyer, a senior advisor, and an operations manager who works for House Republican Whip Steve Scalise of Louisiana. There's also a handful of senior advisors who separately assist House Speaker Nancy Pelosi and House Minority Leader Kevin McCarthy, opposing California-delegation members, neither of whom has commented much on debt-cancellation plans.Insider isn't naming specific staffers with education-related loans because seeking such financial aid is commonplace among students who lack the funds to pay for college outright. But highlighting certain segments of the congressional borrowers helps illustrate the scope of student-loan indebtedness on Capitol Hill at a time when the issue is a contentious political topic.Almost four dozen of the affected staffers have amassed more than $250,000 in student-loan debt. More than 230 owe up to $100,000 in loans. More than 160 owe up to $50,000 — all of which would be wiped away by the debt-forgiveness proposals that progressives in both chambers are imploring President Joe Biden to enact by executive order. Their pleas to date haven't been granted, with White House press secretary Jen Psaki telling reporters that the Biden administration won't be extending its student loan payment relief program beyond the end of January 2022.!function(){"use strict";window.addEventListener("message",(function(e){if(void 0!==e.data["datawrapper-height"]){var t=document.querySelectorAll("iframe");for(var a in e.data["datawrapper-height"])for(var r=0;r.....»»

Category: worldSource: nytDec 16th, 2021

Biden must extend the student-loan payment pause given the uncertainty with Omicron, Chuck Schumer says: "We"re not getting out of this as quickly as we"d like"

"If we don't extend the pause, interest rates just pile up. Students owe a fortune," Senator Schumer said during a news conference on Monday. Senate Majority Leader Chuck Schumer (D-NY) speaks during a news conference about climate change outside the U.S. Capitol on July 28, 2021 in Washington, DC.Drew Angerer/Getty Images Senator Chuck Schumer called on President Biden to extend the student-loan payment pause past Feb. 1. He cited uncertainty with the new Omicron variant as a reason to extend the pause. Many borrowers do not feel financially secure enough to afford payments in just 2 months. While data is limited on the impact of the new Omicron variant, Senate Majority Leader Chuck Schumer wants to ensure 43 million borrowers with federal student loans don't suffer the consequences of having to return to making payments in two months.President Joe Biden's Education Department announced in August that it would be extending the pause on student-loan payments through February 1, but it made clear that was the "final" extension and borrowers would have to prepare to pay off their debt next year, regardless of the state of the pandemic. During a news conference in New York on Monday, Schumer urged Biden to change his mind."We want the country to ultimately cancel student debt, but in the meantime, extend the pause," Schumer said. "The pause must prevail."—ABC News Politics (@ABCPolitics) December 6, 2021 The pause on student-loan payments that both President Donald Trump and Biden oversaw was intended to provide pandemic relief, and Schumer noted that the pandemic is still very much here, especially with the introduction of a new variant. "This debt is just overwhelming for people," Schumer added. "If we don't extend the pause, interest rates just pile up. Students owe a fortune. And with omicron here, we're not getting out of this as quickly as we'd like."The Education Department has not yet commented on whether there are any changes to the student-loan repayment schedule.Schumer also cited the Student Debt Crisis Center's recent survey that found 89% of fully-employed borrowers do not feel financially secure enough to resume payments in just two months. The survey found that for 27% of those borrowers, one-third of their income will go toward their student debt payments next year — money that was sued during the pause to pay off other forms of debt and afford basic necessities.Aside from affordability issues, Insider reported on other issues borrowers are facing as the payment restart quickly approaches. According to a new Bankrate survey, one in five borrowers still don't know what their monthly payments will look like next year, and 75% of respondents reported that some aspect of their finances will be negatively impacted once payments resume.To prevent those problems from mounting, and potentially causing a wave of defaults, Schumer is pointing to Biden to continue pandemic relief for millions of student-loan borrowers in the country."If we don't extend the pause on payments, then that horrendous interest will pile up at a time when too many are still not financially prepared to shoulder a giant monthly bill," Schumer told news site amNY in a statement. "Moreover, with Omicron spreading, the uncertainty with what happens next demands at least one more extension of the student loan payment pause."Read the original article on Business Insider.....»»

Category: topSource: businessinsiderDec 6th, 2021

Biden Using Backdoor Rule To Pass Free College Agenda

Biden Using Backdoor Rule To Pass Free College Agenda Authored by Gerard Scimeca via RealClearEducation.com, Americans by and large oppose giveaways to the affluent or privileged, which explains why they consistently oppose forgiving college student-loan debt. Eighty percent of Americans have no student loan debt, and those who carry debt are disproportionately millennials with advanced degrees – and higher earning potential. Easy loan forgiveness falls under the umbrella of the free college agenda championed by most Democrats, but strong opposition led the Biden administration to drop free college from the spending bill it proposed last month. Not to worry: Democrats discovered a backdoor to free college through an obscure and arcane Department of Education (DOE) rule. Known as Borrower Defense to Repayment (BDR), the rule existed as little more than a formality in the annals of the Federal Register, a stopgap to finalize the Federal Direct Loan Program. Through the first twenty years of its existence, it was implemented just five times, but it has now evolved into a battering ram for Democrats to get free college through the political barricades. In 2015, Corinthian Colleges, which enrolled over 100,000 students at its 100 subsidiary campuses, filed for bankruptcy. The school’s collapse coincided with growing momentum for the “cancel college debt” and “free college” campaigns, which had evolved out of the Occupy Wall Street movement of the early 2010s and found friendly supporters in Congress, such as Senators Elizabeth Warren and Dick Durbin. Under pressure from progressives, Obama Administration Secretary of Education Arne Duncan proposed an interpretation of BDR that would provide more leeway for the DOE to forgive loans. After restructuring the department with an “enforcement office” that would be staffed with attorneys and contractors, the Obama team issued its amendments to the Borrower Defense rule just days before the 2016 election. Among the changes, the Obama administration sought to require for-profit schools – which the Left abhors – to post a letter of credit if a lawsuit was filed. This obligation created a self-fulfilling cycle, whereby Title IV funding could be withheld from a college merely on the basis of unsubstantiated claims, a rule akin to forcing a business to post a bond from a bad Yelp review. This policy weaponized BDR against for-profit schools almost exclusively. The punch landed. Popular career-oriented institutions rely on federal aid far more than public or private institutions do. Three-quarters of students at two-year for-profit colleges receive student loans, for example, compared to just 18% of students at public two-year colleges. When the ITT Technical Institute was targeted by the Obama administration in 2016, it took just 12 days for the school to close its doors after the DOE withheld funds.  The Trump administration halted this policy, arguing that lowering the burden of proof lets any student dissatisfied with his education claim he was misled by his school and seek loan forgiveness. But the Biden administration has resurrected it. To date, President Biden’s Department of Education has approved over $1.5 billion in Borrower Defense claims for some 92,000 students at proprietary colleges. That’s not by chance. BDR has been narrowly promoted among students at for-profit institutions. A survey conducted by our organization in October polled students at five public and private colleges with the largest number of online students. We found that of those who received federal financial aid, nine in ten had never heard of BDR. A remarkable 82% believed they had been misled by their school, and 98% said they would be interested in filing a claim. These findings further confirm that what was created as a failsafe for students truly defrauded by their college or university has been converted into a political bludgeon against for-profit institutions and a free college giveaway.  Ironically, progressives’ politicization of BDR could undermine the significant investment that the U.S. has made to increase access to higher education. It would lead to less educational opportunity, particularly for disadvantaged and low-income students, less innovation and competition in the marketplace, and lasting damage to our economy, which desperately needs skilled workers. What should be clear by now is that easy loan forgiveness – putting no burden on students to demonstrate alleged deception on the part of the institutions they have attended – is merely a backdoor to hundreds of billions of dollars in free college tuition, courtesy of Americans who have paid off their own student loans or never had them in the first place. It’s a massive giveaway to the wealthy. Tyler Durden Mon, 11/22/2021 - 19:00.....»»

Category: blogSource: zerohedgeNov 22nd, 2021

Meet a teacher who just got $44,000 in student debt forgiven but is still fighting: "This struggle isn"t over until it"s over for all 45 million Americans"

Lisa Ansell woke up on Nov. 11 with "a new lease on life" after her student-debt load turned to $0. But she's not giving up advocating for borrowers. Students throwing graduation caps.Getty Images Lisa Ansell got $44,000 of student debt forgiven thanks to recent reforms to a federal program. For years, her payments toward loan forgiveness while working as a teacher were deemed ineligible. Her student debt is gone, but she's not declaring victory until 45 million Americans get the same relief. Lisa Ansell woke up on November 11 free of a burden she'd carried for 15 years: her remaining student loan balance of $44,000 had been forgiven.For more than a decade, she'd been diligently making monthly payments that should've counted toward a federal program called Public Service Loan Forgiveness (PSLF). Established in 2007, the program is meant to forgive student debt for public servants like firefighters, police, or nonprofit workers after they've made 10 years of qualifying monthly payments.Ansell, who lectures at the University of Southern California in Los Angeles, graduated from Harvard in 2003 with a masters degree and was part of the first group of borrowers eligible for forgiveness in 2017. But the program has revealed itself to be riddled with flaws. It ran up a 98% denial rate, and Ansell was one of those disappointed borrowers.Now, following recent Education Department reforms to the program, she said she has "a new lease on life.""I thought it was more empty promises and more empty words," Ansell told Insider. "But I happened to check my balance and when I saw my debt was gone, I took a screenshot as evidence right away in case they tried to pull it back."—Lisa Ansell (@LisaAnsell2) November 11, 2021In October, the Education Department announced a series of reforms to PSLF — something President Joe Biden promised he would fix during his campaign — which included a temporary waiver to allow past payments in other programs to count toward forgiveness.That's just what Ansell needed. Her 96 payments — previously deemed ineligible because they were on the wrong repayment plan, according to documents reviewed by Insider — were finally counted."It's like winning the lottery," Ansell said. "I've had a very painful PSLF saga and after a while you just become numb to the cuts."Ansell no longer has to live every day with the burden of debt on her shoulders, but her fight for the 45 million other Americans with student loans isn't over.'I'm just a sliver of the totality of borrowers drowning in crippling student debt'Ansell started with a student-debt load of $55,000 and consistently made monthly payments that FedLoan Servicing, the student-loan company that manages PSLF, deemed ineligible. Ansell said it was "mission impossible" trying to get help from someone at the company who could put her on the right path to forgiveness. She was told that if she wanted to qualify for PSLF, all of her past payments would not be counted and she would have to start over.While Biden's recent reforms worked in her favor, they haven't for everyone.In addition to her day job at USC, Ansell is also involved with Student Loan Justice, an organization that fights to protect student-loan borrowers across the country. "I'm just a sliver of the totality of borrowers drowning in crippling student debt," Ansell said. "I happen to have been fortunate enough in that of the millions of applications, somehow mine managed to land in the yes file."Lisa Ansell got her remaining $44,000 student debt balance forgiven through a loan forgiveness program for public servants.Lisa AnsellAlong with broad student-debt cancellation, Ansell said she wants to see the restoration of bankruptcy protections — something Student Loan Justice has long been advocating for.As Insider previously reported, borrowers who want to get rid of their debt through bankruptcy must prove "undue hardship," which is a difficult standard to prove. Filing a lawsuit against a student-loan company can also be expensive and lengthy. The company usually has more resources than the borrower, lowering the borrower's chances of succeeding.A bipartisan bill, introduced by Senate Majority Whip Dick Durbin and Sen. John Cornyn of Texas, would allow borrowers to seek a bankruptcy discharge of their federal student loans after 10 years, which Ansell called "the best piece of legislation so far that we've seen."The PSLF reforms are still in early stages. Insider recently spoke to a therapist and a veteran who are both banking on the reforms to give them the overdue relief they deserve. Beyond PSLF, Biden has taken steps to cancel student debt and reform programs for other groups of borrowers, like those defrauded by for-profit schools.Still, when it comes to broad student-debt cancellation, Biden's administration has been largely silent on if, or when, that relief will ever come, and Ansell said she will not stop fighting until it does."The way Biden handles the student debt crisis will determine his legacy," Ansell said. "This struggle isn't over until it's over for 45 million Americans."Do you have a story to share about student debt? Reach out to Ayelet Sheffey at asheffey@insider.com.Read the original article on Business Insider.....»»

Category: topSource: businessinsiderNov 21st, 2021

30,000 student-loan borrowers are getting $2 billion in debt wiped out, Biden"s Education Secretary says

Following reforms announced last month to Public Service Loan Forgiveness, 10,000 borrowers have already gotten $715 million in student debt relief. Education Sec. Miguel Cardona. GREG NASH/POOL/AFP via Getty Images Education Sec. Miguel Cardona said 33,000 student-loan borrowers will get $2 billion in relief in coming weeks. This is a result of reforms to the Public Service Loan Forgiveness Program announced last month. Per Cardona, 10,000 borrowers have already gotten $715 million in debt wiped out. On Thursday, Education Secretary Miguel Cardona wrote on Twitter that recent reforms to a federal program meant to provide student-debt relief to public servants, like teachers and nonprofit workers, is working. He said thousands of borrowers are on track, or have already gotten, student-debt relief.Last month, the Education Department announced a series of reforms to the Public Service Loan Forgiveness (PSLF) program, which is meant to provide relief after ten years of qualifying payments, but has instead racked up a 98% denial rate.-Secretary Miguel Cardona (@SecCardona) November 11, 2021According to Cardona's tweet, in the coming weeks 30,000 borrowers will receive $2 billion in debt relief, and 10,000 eligible borrowers have already gotten $715 million in debt wiped out. In October, the department said it would implement a limited-time waiver through October 31, 2022, that will allow borrowers to count payments from any federal-loan programs or repayment plans toward loan forgiveness through PSLF, including programs and plans that were not previously eligible.That waiver alone would bring 550,000 student-loan borrowers closer to relief automatically, the department said. Other changes included allowing months spent on active duty for service members to count toward payments, even if the loans were on deferment or forbearance, along with plans for the department to review all denied PSLF applications to identify and address errors. Borrowers who believe there was a mistake in processing their applications can also receive another review next year.PSLF was created in 2007, and since the first group of borrowers became eligible for forgiveness in 2017, the program ran up a 98% denial rate, pushing many public service off track for loan relief they thought they receive. While the reforms are good news for those borrowers, though, many have reported confusion with the new rules.A spokesperson for the Pennsylvania Higher Education Assistance Agency (PHEAA), which manages PSLF, referred Insider to a letter from Federal Student Aid head Richard Cordray addressing confusion that borrowers are facing, saying that "complex changes of this magnitude are hard to process and execute.""But we will get the changes made, and I pledge that to you today," Cordray said. "We ask for your patience as we move forward."In July, PHEAA announced plans to shut down its federal loan services in December, but given administrative difficulties with transitioning 8.5 million borrowers, including PSLF accounts, to a new company before the payment pause lifts on February 1, it said on Wednesday it will be extending its contract one extra year.Aside from PSLF, the department has canceled about $11.5 billion in student debt for targeted groups of borrowers, like those defrauded by for-profit schools, but it still will not comment on broad student-loan forgiveness. Insider reported earlier this month that the department has been sitting on the memo that says whether President Joe Biden can cancel student debt broadly since at least April, and it will not release the findings of the memo and continues to say the administration is examining the issue.Read the original article on Business Insider.....»»

Category: topSource: businessinsiderNov 12th, 2021

16 million student-loan borrowers could be facing "millions of mistakes and problems" at the hands of new student-loan companies, Elizabeth Warren says

Three student-loan companies are shutting down this year, and 7 Democrats want to ensure borrowers won't be harmed when payments restart in 90 days. Students toss their hats at Wesleyan University's commencement ceremony in 2018. Eduardo Munoz Alvarez/Getty Images Three student-loan companies are shutting down federal services, impacting 16 million borrowers. Elizabeth Warren joined six Democrats in requesting information from those companies on the transitions. They noted that in the past, transitions have caused a number of mistakes that harmed borrowers. Three student-loan companies announced they are shutting down their federal loan services at the end of this year, placing 16 million borrowers in the hands of new companies. Seven Democrats, led by Massachusetts Sen. Elizabeth Warren, want to ensure those borrowers will not be harmed during the transition before student-loan payments resume in 90 days.In letters to Navient, the Pennsylvania Higher Education Assistance Agency (PHEAA) and Granite State Management and Resources - the three companies ending their federal loan servicing - Warren and six other senators requested information on how each of the companies will ensure "a smooth transfer of tens of millions of borrowers' accounts to new student loan servicers.""Student loan servicers have a long history of misleading borrowers about available options, mismanaging programs, and cheating borrowers out of protections developed to help them pay back their student loans," the lawmakers, including Massachusetts Sen. Ed Markey, wrote. "In previous transfers, failures to transfer complete and accurate information left hundreds of thousands of borrowers with account problems that continue to plague the federal loan portfolio today."They added that during past servicer transitions, "millions of mistakes and problems" caused borrowers to face penalties due to servicer error in processing payments, and months of qualifying payments toward loan forgiveness programs, like Public Service Loan Forgiveness (PSLF) could be lost.PHEAA manages the entire PSLF portfolio, holding millions of accounts for public servants such as teachers and police officers seeking loan forgiveness after ten years of qualifying payments. The lawmakers requested PHEAA provide them with information on how they plan to maintain borrowers' payment records and ensure they will be processed correctly, along with requests to all three companies on further information regarding the transition. The Consumer Financial Protection Bureau (CFPB) has previously highlighted issues that could arise from servicer transitions, resulting in lost payments, surprise late fees, and processing problems. The lawmakers wrote that on top of the difficulties with the transition, the Education Department has the "unprecedented logistical challenge" of resuming student-loan payments for borrowers after a nearly two-year pandemic pause. Despite the significant administrative burdens borrowers and loan companies could be facing, though, Warren has previously said that borrowers no longer having to pay their debt to Navient and PHEAA is a good thing. She told Insider last month that the 6 million borrowers under Navient will be "far better off," citing the company's decades spent "misleading, cheating, and abusing student borrowers." Insider reported in April on the comprehensive history Warren has with Navient, most recently telling Navient's CEO, John Remondi, that he should be fired for the abuses that happened under his leadership.She also said in June that the 8.5 million borrowers serviced by PHEAA could "breathe a sigh of relief" since they would no longer have to deal with the company that oversaw a 98% denial rate for PSLF, and Warren told Insider in a July interview that "the days are over" when student-loan companies could do "a terrible job."But despite administrative burdens, an Education Department spokesperson told Insider after Navient announced plans to shut down that it still "expects" payments to resume on February 1, as planned."We will continue to work to ensure that all of our borrowers can experience a successful return to repayment," the spokesperson said. "The Department expects student loan payments to resume after Jan. 31, 2022."Read the original article on Business Insider.....»»

Category: topSource: businessinsiderNov 4th, 2021

The student debt crisis will be "exacerbated" after Biden cut free community college from his $1.75 trillion social-spending plan, the congressman behind the educational initiative says

Canceling student debt, along with free community college, would fix college affordability issues now and in the future, Rep. Andy Levin told Insider. College graduation. Rattanakun Thonbun/EyeEm Biden's $1.75 trillion social-spending framework cut free community college and slashed the budget for higher ed. Rep. Andy Levin said the student debt crisis will be "exacerbated" with no free community college. He said student debt cancellation will solve the current crisis, while free education will prevent it from happening again. The student debt crisis stands at $1.7 trillion, and President Joe Biden's $1.75 trillion social-spending framework does close to nothing to help the 45 million Americans burdened by debt.On Thursday, Biden unveiled a framework for Democrats' reconciliation bill after months of negotiations. While early childhood education and childcare received a $400 billion investment, higher education got just $40 billion to increase Pell grant awards and provide support to Historically Black Colleges and Universities (HBCUs) and Minority Serving Institutions (MSIs). Tuition-free community college was cut from the framework.Biden first suggested during a CNN town hall last week that two years of tuition-free community college likely would not make the cut, thanks to opposition from centrist Democratic holdout Sen. Joe Manchin. He did, however, promise that he will get it done during his presidency - something he campaigned on.But many students across the country cannot afford to wait. Tuition costs continue to rise, causing people to take out student loans to finance their educations, which can lead to a lifetime of student debt. Robert Pemberton, a 64-year-old with $265,000 in student debt, previously told Insider he sees himself dying with the loans."This is an endless cycle where the loan can never be paid off unless I have a windfall and pay it all or I die and it goes away," he said. Michigan Rep. Andy Levin - the House original sponsor of the free community college proposal - told Insider the student debt crisis will "absolutely be exacerbated" if free community college is cut."It's a shame," Levin said. "We're going to fight right up to the closing whistle on getting it in this package, but if it's not in, we're going to fight to pass it later as soon as we can. Because it'll contribute a lot to relieving students from that burden," he added.Biden's March stimulus law did not include any student debt reduction measures in it, either. His administration has taken steps to cancel student debt for targeted groups of borrowers and began reforming broken loan forgiveness programs. He also extended the pandemic pause on student-loan payments, but lawmakers and advocates say it's not enough to tackle the crisis that grows every day.The magic duo: Free education and student debt cancellation Implementing free community college now won't help the people who have already graduated and carry an average of $30,000 in student debt. That's why Levin thinks at least $50,000 in student debt cancellation per borrower and free higher education is necessary to help future students, current students, and those who have graduated."They're both fixing the current problem and trying to prevent it from being such a problem in the future," Levin said.Biden asked the Education Department nearly seven months ago to prepare a memo on his legal authority to cancel at least $50,000 in student debt per borrower. But that memo hasn't been released. Given that borrowers will have to resume payments on their debt in February after nearly a two-year pandemic pause, a group of lawmakers led by Minnesota Rep. Ilhan Omar, called on the department to release the results of the reviews by October 22. The department missed that deadline, and Omar told Insider the response is long overdue."Millions of borrowers across the country are desperately asking for student debt relief," Omar said. "We know the President can do it with the stroke of a pen."Biden never promised to cancel $50,000 in student debt, despite progressive pressure, but he did campaign on a $10,000 cancellation. Doing so would completely wipe out student debt for 15 million borrowers, while Massachusetts Sen. Elizabeth Warren's $50,000 cancellation proposal would help double that number of debtors."Cancelling $50,000 in student debt would completely wipe out student loans for 84% of borrowers, including more than 3 million borrowers who have been repaying their loans for more than 20 years," Warren previously told Insider. But it's not looking like broad student debt cancellation, or free higher education, is coming anytime soon. The Education Department is reportedly preparing a "safety net" to ease borrowers back into repayment, and Biden never gave a timeline for when, or how, he will work to pass free community college during his term. Levin made clear, though, that two years of free education is vital to preventing student debt in the future."Free community college will grow the demand for higher education generally," Levin said. "It builds the case for free higher education for everyone, which long term, I think is the direction we have to go."Read the original article on Business Insider.....»»

Category: personnelSource: nytOct 30th, 2021

Futures Surge As Banks Report Stellar Earnings; PPI On Deck

Futures Surge As Banks Report Stellar Earnings; PPI On Deck US equity futures, already sharply higher overnight, jumped this morning as a risk-on mood inspired by stellar bank earnings, overshadowed concern that supply snarls. a China property crunch, a tapering Fed and stagflation will weigh on the global recovery. Nasdaq futures jumped 1%, just ahead of the S&P 500 which was up 0.9%. 10-year Treasury yields ticked lower to about 1.5%, and with the dollar lower as well, oil jumped. Bitcoin and the broader crypto space continued to rise. Shares in Morgan Stanley, Citi and Bank of America jumped as their deal-making units rode a record wave of M&A. On the other end, Boeing shares fell more than 1% after a Dow Jones report said the plane maker is dealing with a new defect on its 787 Dreamliner. Here are some of the biggest other U.S. movers today: Occidental (OXY US) rises 1.6% in U.S. premarket trading after it agreed to sell its interests in two Ghana offshore fields for $750m to Kosmos Energy and Ghana National Petroleum Plug Power (PLUG US) rises 3.3% premarket, extending gains from Wednesday, when it announced partnership with Airbus SE and Phillips 66 to find ways to harness hydrogen to power airplanes, vehicles and industry Esports Entertainment (GMBL US) shares rise 16% in U.S. premarket trading after the online gambling company reported its FY21 results and reaffirmed its FY22 guidance Perrigo  (PRGO US) gains 2.8% in premarket trading after Raymond James upgrades to outperform following acquisition of HRA Pharma and recent settlement of Irish tax dispute AT&T (T US) ticks higher in premarket trading after KeyBanc writes upgrades to sector weight from underweight, saying it seems harder to justify further downside from here Avis Budget (CAR US) may be active after getting its only negative rating among analysts as Morgan Stanley cuts to underweight with risk/reward seen pointing toward downside OrthoPediatrics (KIDS US) dipped 2% Wednesday postmarket after it said 3Q revenue was hurt by the surge in cases of Covid-19 delta variant and RSV within children’s hospitals combined with staff shortage Investors continue to evaluate the resilience of economic reopening to supply chain disruptions, a jump in energy prices and the prospect of reduced central bank support. In the earnings season so far, executives at S&P 500 companies mentioned the phrase “supply chain” about 3,000 times on investor calls as of Tuesday -- far higher than last year’s then-record figure. “Our constructive outlook for growth means that our asset allocation remains broadly pro-risk and we continue to be modestly overweight global equities,” according to Michael Grady, head of investment strategy and chief economist at Aviva Investors. “However, we have scaled back that position marginally because of growing pains which could impact sales and margins.” Europe's Stoxx 600 index reached its highest level in almost three weeks, boosted by gains in tech shares and miners. The Euro Stoxx 50 rose over 1% to best levels for the week. FTSE 100 rises 0.75%, underperforming at the margin. Miners and tech names are the strongest sectors with only healthcare stocks in small negative territory. Here are some of the biggest European movers today: THG shares advance as much as 10%, snapping a four-day losing streak, after a non-executive director bought stock while analysts at Goldman Sachs and Liberum defended their buy recommendations. Steico gains as much as 9.9%, the most since Jan., after the insulation manufacturer reported record quarterly revenue, which Warburg says “leaves no doubt” about underlying market momentum. Banco BPM climbs as much as 3.6% and is the day’s best performer on the FTSE MIB benchmark index; bank initiated at buy at Jefferies as broker says opportunity to internalize insurance business offers 9%-16% possible upside to 2023 consensus EPS and is not priced in by the market. Hays rises as much as 4.3% after the recruiter posted a jump in comparable net fees for the first quarter. Publicis jumps as much as 3.7%, the stock’s best day since July, with JPMorgan saying the advertising company’s results show a “strong” third quarter, though there are risks ahead. Kesko shares rise as much as 6.1%. The timing of this year’s third guidance upgrade was a surprise, Inderes says. Ubisoft shares fall as much as 5.5% after JPMorgan Cazenove (overweight) opened a negative catalyst watch, citing short-term downside risk to earnings ahead of results. Earlier in the session, Asian stocks advanced, boosted by a rebound in technology shares as traders focused on the ongoing earnings season and assessed economic-reopening prospects in the region. The MSCI Asia Pacific Index gained as much as 0.7%, as a sub-gauge of tech stocks rose, halting a three-day slide. Tokyo Electron contributed the most to the measure’s climb, while Taiwan Semiconductor Manufacturing Co. closed up 0.4% ahead of its earnings release. India’s tech stocks rose following better-than-expected earnings for three leading firms in the sector. Philippine stocks were among Asia’s best performers as Manila began easing virus restrictions, which will allow more businesses in the capital to reopen this weekend. Indonesia’s stock benchmark rallied for a third-straight day, as the government prepared to reopen Bali to tourists. READ: Commodities Boom, Tourism Hopes Fuel Southeast Asia Stock Rally Ilya Spivak, head of Greater Asia at DailyFX, said FOMC minutes released overnight provided Asian markets with little direction, which may offer some opportunity for recouping recent losses. The report showed officials broadly agreed last month they should start reducing pandemic-era stimulus in mid-November or mid-December. U.S. 10-year Treasury yields stayed below 1.6%, providing support for tech stocks.  “Markets seemed to conclude the near-term narrative is on pause until further evidence,” Spivak said. Shares in mainland China fell as the country reported factory-gate prices grew at the fastest pace in almost 26 years in September. Singapore’s stock benchmark pared initial losses as the country’s central bank unexpectedly tightened policy. Hong Kong’s equity market was closed for a holiday In rates, Treasuries were steady to a tad higher, underperforming Bunds which advanced, led by the long end.  Fixed income is mixed: gilts bull steepen with short dates richening ~2.5bps, offering only a muted reaction to dovish commentary from BOE’s Tenreyro. Bunds rise with 10y futures breaching 169. USTs are relatively quiet with 5s30s unable to crack 100bps to the upside. Peripheral spreads widen slightly. In FX, the Turkish lira was again the overnight standout as it weakened to a record low after President Recep Tayyip Erdogan fired three central bankers. The Bloomberg Dollar Spot Index fell and the greenback slipped against all of its Group-of-10 peers apart from the yen, with risk-sensitive and resource-based currencies leading gains; the euro rose to trade above $1.16 for the first time in a week.  The pound rose to more than a two-week high amid dollar weakness as traders wait for a raft of Bank of England policy makers to speak. Sweden’s krona temporarily came off an almost eight-month high against the euro after inflation fell short of estimates. The euro dropped to the lowest since November against the Swiss franc as banks targeted large option barriers and leveraged sell-stops under 1.0700, traders said; Currency traders are responding to stagflation risks by turning to the Swiss franc. The Aussie advanced to a five-week high versus the greenback even as a monthly jobs report showed employment fell in September; the jobless rate rose less than economists forecast. The kiwi was a among the top performers; RBNZ Deputy Governor Geoff Bascand said inflation pressures were becoming more persistent China’s yuan declined from a four-month high after the central bank signaled discomfort with recent gains by setting a weaker-than-expected reference rate. In commodities, crude futures extend Asia’s gains with WTI up ~$1 before stalling near $81.50. Brent regains a $84-handle. Spot gold drifts through Wednesday’s highs, adding $4 to print just shy of the $1,800/oz mark. Base metals are well bid with LME copper and aluminum gaining as much as 3%.  Looking at the day ahead, we’ve got central bank speakers including the Fed’s Bullard, Bostic, Barkin, Daly and Harker, the ECB’s Elderson and Knot, along with the BoE’s Deputy Governor Cunliffe, Tenreyro and Mann. Data releases from the US include the September PPI reading along with the weekly initial jobless claims. Lastly, earnings releases will include UnitedHealth, Bank of America, Wells Fargo, Morgan Stanley, Citigroup, US Bancorp and Walgreens Boots Alliance. Market Snapshot S&P 500 futures up 0.6% to 4,382.50 STOXX Europe 600 up 0.9% to 464.38 MXAP up 0.7% to 196.12 MXAPJ up 0.6% to 642.66 Nikkei up 1.5% to 28,550.93 Topix up 0.7% to 1,986.97 Hang Seng Index down 1.4% to 24,962.59 Shanghai Composite little changed at 3,558.28 Sensex up 0.7% to 61,190.63 Australia S&P/ASX 200 up 0.5% to 7,311.73 Kospi up 1.5% to 2,988.64 Brent Futures up 1.0% to $83.98/bbl Gold spot up 0.2% to $1,796.13 U.S. Dollar Index down 0.25% to 93.84 German 10Y yield fell 1.5 bps to -0.143% Euro little changed at $1.1615 Brent Futures up 1.0% to $84.13/bbl Top Overnight News from Bloomberg A flattening Treasury yield curve signals increasing concern Federal Reserve efforts to keep inflation in check will derail the recovery in the world’s largest economy China’s factory-gate prices grew at the fastest pace in almost 26 years in September, potentially adding to global inflation pressure if local businesses start passing on higher costs to consumers. Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdogan fired monetary policy makers wary of cutting interest rates further, driving the lira to record lows against the dollar with his midnight decree Singapore’s central bank unexpectedly tightened its monetary policy settings, strengthening the local dollar, as the city-state joins policymakers globally concerned about risks of persistent inflation Shortages of natural gas in Europe and Asia are boosting demand for oil, deepening what was already a sizable supply deficit in crude markets, the International Energy Agency said A tropical storm that’s lashing southern China mixed with Covid-related supply chain snarls is causing a ship backlog from Shenzhen to Singapore, intensifying fears retail shelves may look rather empty come Christmas A more detailed look at global markets courtesy of Newsquawk A constructive mood was seen across Asia-Pac stocks with the region building on the mild positive bias stateside where the Nasdaq outperformed as tech and growth stocks benefitted from the curve flattening, with global risk appetite unfazed by the firmer US CPI data and FOMC Minutes that suggested the start of tapering in either mid-November of mid-December. The ASX 200 (+0.5%) traded higher as tech stocks found inspiration from the outperformance of US counterparts and with the mining sector buoyed by gains in underlying commodity prices. The Nikkei 225 (+1.5%) was the biggest gainer amid currency-related tailwinds and with the latest securities flow data showing a substantial shift by foreign investors to net purchases of Japanese stocks during the prior week. The KOSPI (+1.5%) conformed to the brightening picture amid signs of a slowdown in weekly infections, while the Singapore’s Straits Times Index (+0.3%) lagged for most of the session following weaker than expected Q3 GDP data, and after the MAS surprisingly tightened its FX-based policy by slightly raising the slope of the SGD nominal effective exchange rate (NEER). The Shanghai Comp. (U/C) was initially kept afloat but with gains capped after slightly softer than expected loans and financing data from China and with participants digesting mixed inflation numbers in which CPI printed below estimates but PPI topped forecasts for a record increase in factory gate prices, while there was also an absence of Stock Connect flows with participants in Hong Kong away for holiday. Finally, 10yr JGBs were higher after the recent curve flattening stateside and rebound in T-notes with the US longer-end also helped by a solid 30yr auction, although gains for JGBs were capped amid the outperformance in Tokyo stocks and mostly weaker metrics at the 5yr JGB auction. Top Asian News Chinese Developer Shares Fall on Debt Crisis: Evergrande Update Japan’s Yamagiwa Says Abenomics Fell Short at Spreading Wealth China Seen Rolling Over Policy Loans to Keep Liquidity Abundant Malaysia’s 2020 Fertility Rate Falls to Lowest in Four Decades Bourses in Europe have modestly extended on the upside seen at the European cash open (Euro Stoxx 50 +1.1%; Stoxx 600 +0.9%) in a continuation of the firm sentiment experienced overnight. US equity futures have also conformed to the broader upbeat tone, with gains seen across the ES (+0.7%), NQ (+0.8%), RTY (+0.8%) and YM (+0.7%). The upside comes despite a lack of overly pertinent newsflow, with participants looking ahead to a plethora of central bank speakers. The major indices in Europe also see a broad-based performance, but the periphery narrowly outperforms, whilst the SMI (Unch) lags amid the sectorial underperformance seen in Healthcare. Overall, the sectors portray somewhat of a cyclical tilt. The Basic Resources sector is the clear winner and is closely followed by Tech and Financial Services. Individual moves are scarce as price action is largely dictated by the macro picture, but the tech sector is led higher by gains in chip names after the world's largest contract chipmaker TSMC (+3.1% pre-market) reported strong earnings and upgraded its revenue guidance. Top European News German 2021 Economic Growth Forecast Slashed on Supply Crunch U.K. Gas Shipper Stops Supplies in Another Blow to Power Firms Christmas Toy Shortages Loom as Cargo Clogs a Major U.K. Port Putin Is Back to Building Financial Fortress as Reserves Grow In FX, the Dollar and index by default have retreated further from Tuesday’s 2021 peak for the latter as US Treasury yields continue to soften and the curve realign in wake of yesterday’s broadly in line CPI data and FOMC minutes that set the schedule for tapering, but maintained a clear differential between scaling down the pace of asset purchases and the timing of rate normalisation. Hence, the Buck is losing bullish momentum with the DXY now eying bids and downside technical support under 94.000 having slipped beneath an early October low (93.804 from the 5th of the month vs 93.675 a day earlier) and the 21 DMA that comes in at 93.770 today between 94.090-93.754 parameters before the next IJC update, PPI data and a heavy slate of Fed speakers. NZD/AUD - No real surprise that the Kiwi has been given a new lease of life given that the RBNZ has already taken its first tightening step and put physical distance between the OCR and the US FFR, not to mention that the move sparked a major ‘sell fact’ after ‘buy rumour’ reaction. However, Nzd/Usd is back on the 0.7000 handle with additional impetus via favourable tailwinds down under as the Aud/Nzd cross is now nearer 1.0550 than 1.0600 even though the Aussie is also taking advantage of the Greenback’s fall from grace to reclaim 0.7400+ status. Note, Aud/Usd may be lagging somewhat on the back of a somewhat labour report overnight as the employment tally fell slightly short of expectations and participation dipped, but the jobless rate fell and full time jobs rose. Moreover, RBA Deputy Governor Debelle repeated that circumstances are different for Australia compared to countries where policy is tightening, adding that employment is positive overall, but there is not much improvement on the wage front. CAD/GBP/CHF - The next best majors in terms of reclaiming losses vs their US counterpart, with the Loonie also encouraged by a firm bounce in oil prices and other commodities in keeping with a general recovery in risk appetite. Usd/Cad is under 1.2400, while Cable is now over 1.3700 having clearly breached Fib resistance around 1.3663 and the Franc is probing 0.9200 for a big figure-plus turnaround from recent lows irrespective of mixed Swiss import and producer prices. EUR/JPY - Relative laggards, but the Euro has finally hurdled chart obstacles standing in the way of 1.1600 and gradually gathering impetus to pull away from decent option expiry interest at the round number and just above (1.5 bn and 1 bn 1.1610-20), and the Yen regrouping around the 113.50 axis regardless of dovish BoJ rhetoric. In short, board member Noguchi conceded that the Bank may have little choice but to extend pandemic relief support unless it becomes clear that the economy has returned to a pre-pandemic state, adding that more easing may be necessary if the jobs market does not improve from pent-up demand, though he doesn't see and immediate need to top up stimulus or big stagflation risk. In commodities, WTI and Brent front month futures are continuing the grind higher seen since the European close yesterday as the risk tone remains supportive and in the aftermath of an overall bullish IEA oil market report. The IEA upgraded its 2021 and 2022 oil demand forecasts by 170k and 210k BPD respectively, which contrasts the EIA STEO and the OPEC MOMR – with the former upping its 2021 but cutting 2022 forecast, whilst the OPEC MOMR saw the 2021 demand forecast cut and 2022 was maintained. The IEA report however noted that the ongoing energy crisis could boost oil demand by 500k BPD, and oil demand could exceed pre-pandemic levels in 2022. On this, China has asked Russia to double electricity supply between November-December. The morning saw commentary from various energy ministers, but perhaps the most telling from the Russian Deputy PM Novak who suggested Russia will produce 9.9mln BPD of oil in October (in-line with the quota), but that Russia has no problem in increasing oil output which can go to 11.3mln BPD (Russia’s capacity) and even more than that, but output will depend on market situation. Long story short, Russia can ramp up output but is currently caged by the OPEC+ pact. WTI Nov extended on gain about USD 81/bbl to a current high of USD 81.41/bbl (vs 80.41/bbl low) while its Brent counter topped USD 84.00/bbl to a USD 84.24/bbl high (vs 83.18/bbl low). As a reminder, the weekly DoEs will be released at 16:00BST/11:00EDT on account of the Columbus Day holiday. Gas prices have also moved higher in intraday, with the UK Nat Gas future +5.5% at the time of writing. Returning to the Russian Deputy PM Novak who noted that Nord Stream 2 will be ready for work in the next few days, still expects certification to occur and commercial supplies of gas via Nord Stream 2 could start following certification. Elsewhere, spot gold and silver have been drifting higher as the Buck wanes, with spot gold topping its 200 DMA (1,7995/oz) and in striking distance of its 100 DMA (1,799/oz) ahead of the USD 1,800/oz mark. Over to base metals, LME copper is again on a firmer footing, owing to the overall constructive tone across the market. Dalian iron ore meanwhile fell for a second straight day in a continuation of the downside seen as Beijing imposed tougher steel output controls for winter. World Steel Association also cut its global steel demand forecast to +4.5% in 2021 (prev. forecast +5.8%); +2.2% in 2022 (prev. forecast 2.7%). US Event Calendar 8:30am: Sept. PPI Final Demand MoM, est. 0.6%, prior 0.7%; YoY, est. 8.6%, prior 8.3% 8:30am: Sept. PPI Ex Food and Energy MoM, est. 0.5%, prior 0.6%; YoY, est. 7.1%, prior 6.7% 8:30am: Sept. PPI Ex Food, Energy, Trade MoM, est. 0.4%, prior 0.3%; YoY, est. 6.5%, prior 6.3% 8:30am: Oct. Initial Jobless Claims, est. 320,000, prior 326,000; Continuing Claims, est. 2.67m, prior 2.71m 9:45am: Oct. Langer Consumer Comfort, prior 53.4 Central Banks 8:35am: Fed’s Bullard Takes Part in Virtual Discussion 9:45am: Fed’s Bostic Takes Part in Panel on Inclusive Growth 12pm: New York Fed’s Logan Gives Speech on Policy Implementation 1pm: Fed’s Barkin Gives Speech 1pm: Fed’s Daly Speaks at Conference on Small Business Credit 6pm: Fed’s Harker Discusses the Economic Outlook DB's Jim Reid concludes the overnight wrap Inflation dominated the conversation yet again for markets yesterday, after another upside surprise from the US CPI data led to the increasing realisation that we’ll still be talking about the topic for some time yet. Equities were pretty subdued as they looked forward to the upcoming earnings season, but investor jitters were evident as the classic inflation hedge of gold (+1.87%) posted its strongest daily performance since March, whilst the US dollar (-0.46%) ended the session as the worst performer among the G10 currencies. Running through the details of that release, headline US consumer prices were up by +0.4% on a monthly basis in September (vs. +0.3% expected), marking the 5th time in the last 7 months that the figure has come in above the median estimate on Bloomberg, though core prices were in line with consensus at +0.2% month-over-month. There were a number of drivers behind the faster pace, but food inflation (+0.93%) saw its biggest monthly increase since April 2020. Whilst some pandemic-sensitive sectors registered soft readings, housing-related prices were much firmer. Rent of primary residence grew +0.45%, its fastest pace since May 2001 and owners’ equivalent rent increased +0.43%, its strongest since June 2006. These housing gauges are something that Fed officials have signposted as having the potential to provide more durable upward pressure on inflation. The CPI release only added to speculation that the Fed would be forced to hike rates earlier than previously anticipated, and investors are now pricing in almost 4 hikes by the end of 2023, which is over a full hike more than they were pricing in just a month earlier. In response, the Treasury yield curve continued the previous day’s flattening, with the prospect of tighter monetary policy seeing the 2yr yield up +2.0bps to a post-pandemic high of 0.358%, whilst the 10yr decreased -4.0bps to 1.537%. That move lower in the 10yr yield was entirely down to lower real rates, however, which were down -7.4bps, suggesting investors were increasingly concerned about long-term growth prospects, whereas the 10yr inflation breakeven was up +3.3bps to 2.525%, its highest level since May. Meanwhile in Europe, 10yr sovereign bond yields took a turn lower alongside Treasuries, with those on bunds (-4.2bps), OATs (-4.0bps) and BTPs (-2.3bps) all falling. Recent inflation dynamics and issues on the supply-side are something that politicians have become increasingly attuned to, and President Biden gave remarks last night where he outlined efforts to address the supply-chain bottlenecks. This followed headlines earlier in the session that major ports in southern California would move to a 24/7 schedule to unclog delivery backlogs, and Mr. Biden also used the opportunity to push for the passage of the infrastructure plan. That comes as it’s also been reported by Reuters that the White House has been speaking with US oil and gas producers to see how prices can be brought lower. We should hear from Mr. Biden again today, who’s due to give an update on the Covid-19 response. On the topic of institutions that care about inflation, the September FOMC minutes suggested staff still remained optimistic that inflationary pressures would prove transitory, although Committee members themselves were predictably more split on the matter. Several participants pointed out that pandemic-sensitive prices were driving most of the gains, while some expressed concerns that high rates of inflation would feed into longer-term inflation expectations. Otherwise, the minutes all but confirmed DB’s US economists’ call for a November taper announcement, with monthly reductions in the pace of asset purchases of $10 billion for Treasuries and $5 billion for MBS. Markets took the news in their stride immediately following the release, reflecting how the build-up to this move has been gradually telegraphed through the year. Turning to equities, the S&P 500 managed to end its 3-day losing streak, gaining +0.30% by the close. Megacap technology stocks led the way, with the FANG+ index up +1.13% as the NASDAQ added +0.73%. On the other hand, cyclicals such as financials (-0.64%) lagged behind the broader index following flatter yield curve, and JPMorgan Chase (-2.64%) sold off as the company’s Q3 earnings release showed muted loan growth. Separately, Delta Air Lines (-5.76%) also sold off along with the broader S&P 500 airlines index (-3.51%), as they warned that rising fuel costs would threaten earnings over the current quarter. European indices posted a more solid performance than the US, with the STOXX 600 up +0.71%, though the sectoral balance was similar with tech stocks outperforming whilst the STOXX Banks index (-2.05%) fell back from its 2-year high the previous session. Overnight in Asia equities have put in a mixed performance, with the KOSPI (+1.17%) and the Nikkei (+1.01%) moving higher whilst the Shanghai Composite (-0.25%) and the CSI (-0.62%) have lost ground. Those moves follow the release of Chinese inflation data for September, which showed producer price inflation hit its highest in nearly 26 years, at +10.7% (vs. +10.5% expected), driven mostly by higher coal prices and energy-sensitive categories. On the other hand, the CPI measure for September came in slightly below consensus at +0.7% (vs. +0.8% expected), indicating that higher factory gate prices have not yet translated into consumer prices. Meanwhile, equity markets in the US are pointing to a positive start later on with S&P 500 futures up +0.32%. Of course, one of the drivers behind the renewal of inflation jitters has been the recent surge in commodity prices across the board, and we’ve seen further gains yesterday and this morning that will only add to the concerns about inflation readings yet to come. Oil prices have advanced yet again, with Brent Crude up +0.69% this morning to be on track to close at a 3-year high as it stands. That comes in spite of OPEC’s monthly oil market report revising down their forecast for world oil demand this year to 5.8mb/d, having been at 5.96mb/d last month. Elsewhere, European natural gas prices were up +9.24% as they continued to pare back some of the declines from last week, and a further two energy suppliers in the UK collapsed, Pure Planet and Colorado Energy, who supply quarter of a million customers between them. Otherwise, copper (+4.4x%) hit a 2-month high yesterday, and it up a further +1.01% this morning, Turning to Brexit, yesterday saw the European Commission put forward a set of adjustments to the Northern Ireland Protocol, which is a part of the Brexit deal that’s caused a significant dispute between the UK and the EU. The proposals from Commission Vice President Šefčovič would see an 80% reduction in checks on animal and plant-based products, as well as a 50% reduction in paperwork by reducing the documentation needed for goods moving between Great Britain and Northern Ireland. It follows a speech by the UK’s David Frost on Tuesday, in which he said that Article 16 of the Protocol, which allows either side to take unilateral safeguard measures, could be used “if necessary”. Mr. Frost is due to meet with Šefčovič in Brussels tomorrow. Running through yesterday’s other data, UK GDP grew by +0.4% in August (vs. +0.5% expected), and the July number was revised down to show a -0.1% contraction (vs. +0.1% growth previously). The release means that GDP in August was still -0.8% beneath its pre-pandemic level back in February 2020. To the day ahead now, and on the calendar we’ve got central bank speakers including the Fed’s Bullard, Bostic, Barkin, Daly and Harker, the ECB’s Elderson and Knot, along with the BoE’s Deputy Governor Cunliffe, Tenreyro and Mann. Data releases from the US include the September PPI reading along with the weekly initial jobless claims. Lastly, earnings releases will include UnitedHealth, Bank of America, Wells Fargo, Morgan Stanley, Citigroup, US Bancorp and Walgreens Boots Alliance. Tyler Durden Thu, 10/14/2021 - 08:29.....»»

Category: blogSource: zerohedgeOct 14th, 2021

Here"s everything Biden has done so far to address the $1.7 trillion student debt crisis

From extending the student-loan payment pause to cancelling student debt for some borrowers, here's everything Biden has done on student debt to date. Shutterstock.com Since Biden took office, he's taken a number of actions to address the $1.7 trillion student-debt crisis. They include cancelling debt for borrowers with disabilities and extending the payment pause on loans. Democrats are pushing for him to cancel $50,000 in student debt per person, which the DOJ is reviewing. See more stories on Insider's business page. Forty-five million Americans have a $1.7 trillion student-debt burden in the country. And many of them, alongside Democrats and advocates, want President Joe Biden to forgive $50,000 of their debt.He hasn't done that yet, but the president has taken steps to lessen the burden and provide relief during the pandemic.As one of his first actions in office, Biden extended the pause on student-loan payments through September, coupled with zero growth in interest, to ensure borrowers suffering financially would not have to worry about paying off their loans. That is now running through January 2022.Since then, Education Secretary Miguel Cardona has cancelled billions in student debt for borrowers with disabilities and borrowers defrauded by for-profit schools. He's also started conducting reviews of student loan forgiveness programs that don't work as they should.But Democrats want Biden to do more.They have been keeping the pressure on the president to cancel $50,000 in student debt per person using his executive authority. Biden has expressed hesitancy to do so, and although he has asked the Education and Justice Departments to review his executive abilities to wipe out that debt, Democrats remain adamant that he can, and should, cancel student debt immediately with the flick of a pen."Student loan cancellation could occur today," Massachusetts Sen. Elizabeth Warren told Insider. "The president just needs to sign a piece of paper canceling that debt. It doesn't take any act of Congress or any amendment to the budget."Detailed below is everything Biden has done to date to confront the student debt crisis: Extended the pause on student-loan payments Evan Vucci/AP On his first day in office, Biden asked the Education Department to extend the pause on federal student loan payments through September 30, following Education Secretary Betsy DeVos' extension of it through the end of January 2020. This was accompanied by a 0% interest rate during that time period.National Economic Council Director Brian Deese said at the time that the extension would alleviate burdens on many households. "In this moment of economic hardship, we want to reduce the burden of these financial trade-offs," Deese said.This extension, however did not apply to the more than 7 million borrowers with loans held by private companies. In August, nearly two months before the pause was set to expire, Education Secretary Miguel Cardona announced the pause would be extended through January 31, 2022. This is the fourth extension of the pause during the pandemic, and Cardona said in a statement that it will be the "final" one."The payment pause has been a lifeline that allowed million of Americans to focus on their families, health, and finances  instead of student loans during the national emergency," Cardona said.The announcement of the extension was welcomed by many Democrats and advocacy groups who have been pushing for additional student debt relief for borrowers. Expanded the scope of the student loan payment pause Reuters/Andrew Burton Biden's payments pause on student loans initially only applied to borrowers with federal loans, meaning those with privately-held loans had to continue making payments during the pandemic.But on March 29, Cardona expanded the scope of that pause to apply to loans under the Federal Family Education Loan (FFEL) Program, which are privately held. This helped 1.14 million additional borrowers. The FFEL Program ended in 2010, but according to Education Department data, 11.2 million borrowers still have outstanding FFEL loans totaling over $248 billion. And while the department acquired some of the outstanding FFEL loans, many are still privately owned and were not affected by the earlier pause on federally owned student loan payments.According to a press release, any FFEL borrower who made a payment in the past year will have the option to request a refund.  Asked the Justice and Education Departments to review his authority to cancel student debt REUTERS / Jonathan Ernst At a CNN town hall in February, Biden said he doesn't have the executive authority to cancel up to $50,000 in student debt per person, but said he is prepared to cancel $10,000 — something he campaigned on. The same month, White House Press Secretary Jen Psaki told reporters that Biden will ask the Justice Department to review his legal authority to cancel $50,000 in student debt. Biden's administration has not yet commented on the status of the Justice Department's review.However, Insider reported that he has yet to deliver on that campaign promise, and while Biden said he would support legislation brought to him to cancel $10,000 in student debt, Democrats argue that legislation takes too long, and the president can cancel debt immediately using his executive authority."We have a lot on our plate, including moving to infrastructure and all kinds of other things," Warren said in a February press call. "I have legislation to do it, but to me, that's just not a reason to hold off. The president can do this, and I very much hope that he will."And White House Chief of Staff Ron Klain told Politico in April that Biden had asked Cardona to create a memo on the president's legal authority to forgive $50,000 in student loans per person.Biden will "look at that legal authority," Klain said. "He'll look at the policy issues around that, and he'll make a decision. He hasn't made a decision on that either way, and, in fact, he hasn't yet gotten the memos that he needs to start to focus on that decision." Reversed a DeVos methodology for determining loan forgiveness Secretary of Education Betsy DeVos. Alex Wong/Getty Images On March 18, Cardona reversed a Trump-era policy that gave only partial relief to defrauded students.The debt-cancellation methodology, known as the "borrower defense to repayment" — approved by Education Secretary Betsy DeVos — compared the median earnings of graduates with debt-relief claims to the median earnings of graduates in comparable programs. The bigger the difference, the more relief the applicant would receive.But compared to a 99.2% approval rate for defrauded claims filed under President Barack Obama, DeVos had a 99.4% denial rate for borrowers and ran up a huge backlog of claims from eligible defrauded borrowers seeking student debt forgiveness.Cardona said that process did not result in appropriate relief determination and needed to be reversed, and a judge recently ruled that DeVos must testify over why so few borrowers were approved for loan forgiveness. Cancelled student debt for some defrauded borrowers Nirat.pix/Getty Images So far, Cardona has cancelled over $2.6 billion in student debt for borrowers defrauded by for-profit schools.For-profit institutions that shut down years ago, such as Corinthian Colleges and ITT Technical Institutes, were accused of violating federal law by persuading their students to take out loans, and Cardona's new policy helped approximately 72,000 of those students receive $1 billion in loan cancellation in March."Borrowers deserve a simplified and fair path to relief when they have been harmed by their institution's misconduct," Cardona said in a statement. "A close review of these claims and the associated evidence showed these borrowers have been harmed and we will grant them a fresh start from their debt."On June 16, Cardona cancelled student debt for 18,000 additional borrowers defrauded by ITT Technical Institutes, totaling to about $500 million in debt relief.The Education Department announced in a press release that 18,000 borrowers who attended ITT Tech will get 100% of their student debt forgiven, and the department will begin notifying borrowers of their approvals for loan forgiveness in the coming weeks and will work quickly to discharge those borrowers' loan balances."Our action today will give thousands of borrowers a fresh start and the relief they deserve after ITT repeatedly lied to them," Cardona said in a statement.An additional 115,000 defrauded ITT borrowers got $1.1 billion in student debt relief on August 26, applicable for those who did not complete their degree and left ITT on or after March 31, 2008.And in the first time since 2017 that borrower defense claims have been approved for borrowers outside of ITT Tech, Corinthian Colleges, and American Career Institute, on July 9, Cardona cancelled student debt for 1,800 borrowers who attended the for-profit schools Westwood College, Marinello Schools of Beauty, and the Court Reporting Institute. Cancelled student debt for some borrowers with disabilities Getty Images / Dan Kitwood On March 29, Cardona cancelled $1.3 billion of student debt for about 41,000 borrowers with disabilities.He also waived an Obama-era requirement for those borrowers to submit documentation during a three-year monitoring period to verify that their incomes did not exceed the poverty line of $12,880 annually for a single person.A 2016 report from the Government Accountability Office found that 98% of reinstated disability discharges occurred because borrowers did not submit the required documentation — not because their incomes were too high."Borrowers with total and permanent disabilities should focus on their well-being, not put their health on the line to submit earnings information during the COVID-19 emergency," Cardona said in a statement. "Waiving these requirements will ensure no borrower who is totally and permanently disabled risks having to repay their loans simply because they could not submit paperwork."But experts said this action did not make up for the significant number of borrowers who never received loan forgiveness simply due to paperwork."Today's announcement is not cause for celebration but rather for outrage," Persis Yu, the director of the Student Loan Borrower Assistance Project at the National Consumer Law Center, said in a statement at the time. "It is scandalous that the Department revoked the loan discharges for 41,000 borrowers with total and permanent disabilities due to paperwork issues during a pandemic."Then, on August 19, Cardona wiped out student debt for 323,000 additional borrowers with disabilities, resulting in $5.8 billion in student-debt relief, and he "indefinitely" waived the requirement to provide proof of income."We've heard loud and clear from borrowers with disabilities and advocates about the need for this change and we are excited to follow through on it," Cardona said. "This change reduces red tape with the aim of making processes as simple as possible for borrowers who need support."Cardona also said the department will consider further waiving the three-year monitoring period. Started a review of student-loan forgiveness programs Suzanne Kreiter/The Boston Globe via Getty Images On May 24, the Education Department announced it is beginning the process of issuing new higher education regulations, mainly concerning student debt-forgiveness programs. The first step of the process will be through holding hearings in June to receive feedback on "regulations that would address gaps in postsecondary outcomes, such as retention, completion, student loan repayment, and loan default," according to a press release.The department will also seek comments on rules regarding student loan forgiveness for borrowers in public service and borrowers with disabilities, among other things.The main topics the department plans to address concern the methods for forgiving debt for defrauded borrowers and borrowers with disabilities, along with looking into the Public Service Loan Forgiveness (PSLF) program, which has rejected 98% of eligible borrowers. Forbes reported that the process to implement new rules could be lengthy, though. After the hearings in June, there will be "negotiated rulemaking," during which stakeholders meet with the department to review proposed regulations, and it could take a year or longer until changes are implemented. Biden's regulatory agenda also included plans to review loan forgiveness programs, but Insider reported on June 15 that details for those reviews remain unclear, and an Education Department spokesperson told Insider there is not yet a timeline for when improvements will be implemented.  Waived interest on student loans for service members Members of the United States Marine Corps stand listening to the 45th President Donald J. Trump's address of the crowd for the opening ceremony of the New York City 100th annual Veterans Day Parade and wreath-laying at the Eternal Light Flag Staff. Ira L. Black/Corbis via Getty Images The Education Department announced on August 20 that 47,000 former and active-duty service members will get the interest on their student loans retroactively waived.The relief will happen automatically, removing the requirement for service members to make individual requests to access the benefit, which, according to the press release, will make service members eight times more likely to receive the benefit than in 2019."Brave men and women in uniform serving our country can now focus on doing their jobs and coming home safely, not filling out more paperwork to access their hard-earned benefits," FSA Chief Operating Officer Richard Cordray said in a statement. "Federal Student Aid is grateful for our strong partnership with the Department of Defense, and we will seek to reduce red tape for service members wherever possible."Service members deployed to areas that qualify them for "imminent danger or hostile fire pay," according to the Higher Education Act, should not accrue interest on student loans that were first disbursed on or after October 1, 2008. But since the process was not previously automated, only a small proportion of eligible service members were able to access the benefit, with only about 4,800 of them getting relief in 2019. Overhauled a student-loan forgiveness program for public servants Andreas Rentz/Getty Images The Education Department on October 6 announced a major overhaul of the Public Service Loan Forgiveness (PSLF) program. It's supposed to wipe out student debt for public servants after 120 qualifying monthly payments, but to date it has rejected 98% of applicants due to deep flaws within the program.According to the department's press release, it will implement a limited-time waiver through October 31, 2022, that will allow borrowers to count payments from any federal loan programs or repayment plans toward loan forgiveness through PSLF, including programs and plans that were not previously eligible.The department said this waiver alone would bring 550,000 borrowers closer to student-debt relief automatically, including 22,000 borrowers who will be immediately eligible for relief without any action on their part, totaling $1.74 billion in forgiveness. An additional 27,000 borrowers could also qualify for $2.82 billion in forgiveness if they certify additional periods of employment."Borrowers who devote a decade of their lives to public service should be able to rely on the promise of Public Service Loan Forgiveness," Education Secretary Miguel Cardona said in a statement. "The system has not delivered on that promise to date, but that is about to change for many borrowers who have served their communities and their country."Other changes, to be rolled out in the next few months, include making payments easier to qualify for the program and reviewing denied applications and correcting errors. Read the original article on Business Insider.....»»

Category: topSource: businessinsiderOct 6th, 2021