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Saturday, May 21, 2022

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Senators reach short-term deal on student loan rate increase


A bipartisan group of senators reached a deal Wednesday to offer college students better rates on loans in the coming academic year with higher rates to be held off in an attempt to battle Congress’s decision made on July 1 to double student loan interest rates to 6.8 percent from 3.4.

According to USA TODAY, the agreement came one day after lawmakers met with President Barack Obama at the White House.

Although the deal will offer students lower interest rates through the 2015 academic year, rates will likely climb higher than they were before after the deal has run its course.

The interest rates would be linked to the financial markets, yet Democrats won a protection for students that rates would never exceed 8.25 for undergraduate students in the bipartisan debate.

Sen. Lamar Alexander, R-Tenn., the top Republican on education issues, told Politico the proposal would apply to students who have already taken federal loans at higher rates.

It would save students in 11 million families billions of dollars, Alexander said.

Yet according to Fox News, liberal advocacy groups are criticizing the plan.

“Instead of making student loans more affordable for both today’s students and tomorrow’s, this deal locks in long-term changes that provide short-term benefits for current students by increasing long-term costs for future students,” said Lauren Asher, president of the Institute for College Access and Success.

Under the deal, all undergraduates this fall would borrow at 3.85 percent interest rates, graduate students at 5.4 and parents at 6.4.

The agreement was estimated to reduce the deficit by $715 million throughout the next decade.

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