Senate deal would cut student interest rates
WASHINGTON — Heading off a costly rate increase for returning college students, a bipartisan group of senators reached a deal on Wednesday that would offer students better rates this fall but perhaps assign higher rates in coming years.
The deal would offer students lower interest rates through the 2015 academic year, but then rates were expected to climb above where they were when students left campus this spring. Undergraduates could face rates as high as 8.25 percent, while graduate students would see rates as high as 9.5 percent and parents' rates would top out at 10.5 percent.
The deal was described by Republican and Democratic aides who insisted on anonymity because they were not authorized to discuss the ongoing negotiations by name.
A vote on the agreement could be made as early as Thursday, although it could be pushed back to the middle of next week depending on the Senate calendar.
The bipartisan agreement is expected to be the final in a string of efforts that have emerged from near constant work to undo a rate hike that took hold for subsidized Stafford loans on July 1. Rates for new subsidized Stafford loans doubled from 3.4 percent to 6.8 percent, adding roughly $2,600 to students' education costs.
Lawmakers from both parties called the hike senseless but differed on how to restore the lower rates. Republicans have pushed for a link between interest rates and the financial markets. Obama included that link in his budget proposal, as did House Republicans. Democrats balked, saying it could produce government profits on the backs of borrowers if rates continued to climb.
Show commenting policy
TribLive commenting policy
You are solely responsible for your comments and by using TribLive.com you agree to our Terms of Service.
We moderate comments. Our goal is to provide substantive commentary for a general readership. By screening submissions, we provide a space where readers can share intelligent and informed commentary that enhances the quality of our news and information.
While most comments will be posted if they are on-topic and not abusive, moderating decisions are subjective. We will make them as carefully and consistently as we can. Because of the volume of reader comments, we cannot review individual moderation decisions with readers.
We value thoughtful comments representing a range of views that make their point quickly and politely. We make an effort to protect discussions from repeated comments either by the same reader or different readers.
We follow the same standards for taste as the daily newspaper. A few things we won't tolerate: personal attacks, obscenity, vulgarity, profanity (including expletives and letters followed by dashes), commercial promotion, impersonations, incoherence, proselytizing and SHOUTING. Don't include URLs to Web sites.
We do not edit comments. They are either approved or deleted. We reserve the right to edit a comment that is quoted or excerpted in an article. In this case, we may fix spelling and punctuation.
We welcome strong opinions and criticism of our work, but we don't want comments to become bogged down with discussions of our policies and we will moderate accordingly.
We appreciate it when readers and people quoted in articles or blog posts point out errors of fact or emphasis and will investigate all assertions. But these suggestions should be sent via e-mail. To avoid distracting other readers, we won't publish comments that suggest a correction. Instead, corrections will be made in a blog post or in an article.
- White woman sues sperm bank for giving her donation from black man
- Head of Secret Service resigns
- Girl missing for 12 years rescued in Mexico; mother arrested
- Detroit’s emergency manager questioned about bankruptcy plan
- ER knew ill man visiting from Africa, sent him home
- Hagel orders steps to fix military health care
- Records show Kissinger pursued strategy to attack Cuba
- White man convicted of murder of black teenager in Jacksonville
- Mexico expected to free former Marine soon
- DeLay conviction killed by top court
- Obama administration blasts Israeli housing project