May 2011 Archives

The New York Times
By: David Streitfeld
May 31, 2011

SAN FRANCISCO -- The desire to own your own home, long a bedrock of the American Dream, is fast becoming a casualty of the worst housing downturn since the Great Depression.

The Washington Post
By: Ben Hallman
May 27, 2011

To millions of member-customers, credit unions are the financial equivalent of a trusted uncle, dispensing prudent loans for cars, homes, and education without the profit motive of traditional banks.

The Washington Post
By: Daniel de Vise
May 30, 2011

Top students seeking best deals spur bidding wars among colleges

Gillian Spolarich's college search played out like a romantic triangle. She was set on American University. But the College of Charleston was set on her. The Southern suitor sweetened its admission offer with a pledge of more than $10,000 in merit aid.

The Washington Post
By: Paul Kane
May 30, 2011

Setting the stage for a long summer of heated negotiations, the House is expected to reject a proposal Tuesday that would increase the nation's ability to borrow money without also making major cuts in federal spending.

Home Loans: A Call to ARMs?

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The Wall Street Journal
By: Annamaria Andriotis
May 28, 2011

Adjustable-Rate Mortgages, Out of Favor for Years, Are Looking Like a Deal.

One of the signature loans of the housing boom--the adjustable-rate mortgage--is looking more attractive than it has in years. For some buyers, it may be an even better deal than a fixed-rate mortgage.

New America Foundation (K2C)
By: Elizabeth Wu
May 27, 2011

Five and six year olds across San Francisco are graduating kindergarten this week with more than just a paper diploma--they also have their own personal college savings account.

The New York Times
By: David Leonhardt
May 26, 2011

The latest economic numbers have not been good. Jobless claims rose last week, the Labor Department said on Thursday. Another report showed that economic growth at the start of the year was no faster than the Commerce Department initially reported -- "a real surprise," said Ian Shepherdson of High Frequency Economics.

NPR
By: Tamara Keith
May 27, 2011

The Consumer Financial Protection Bureau will on July 21 officially become the nation's newest government agency -- and the only one with the singular aim of looking out for the best interests of consumers. The agency is controversial, and at the center of it all is the woman whom President Obama asked to set it up: Elizabeth Warren.

By: Amanda M. Fairbanks
May 26, 2011

NEW YORK -- Fueled by equal parts desperation and frustration, Dianez Smith took to the street.

The Huffington Post
By: Dorie Turner
5/25/11

ATLANTA -- A new $500 million federal grant competition announced Wednesday aims to do away with an uncoordinated system of preschool programs that often leave the poorest children without options and allow bad schools to go unchecked.

New America Foundation
By: David Rothstein
May 26, 2011

Jackson Hewitt, the nation's second largest paid tax preparation chain, filed for Chapter 11 bankruptcy on Tuesday. The tax giant's stock had been free falling since February when the IRS announced it would end the debt indicator, an administrative flag from the IRS that helped banks to make tax refund anticipation loans (RALs). It got worse when several of the smaller, regional banks were told by the FDIC that they were not financially stable enough to sell tax loans.

The Huffington Post
By: Amy Traub
May 26, 2011

Payday lending has been denounced as "a scourge on vulnerable citizens" and condemned as "modern day usury." Across the country, consumer advocates are fighting to rein in the high-cost, short-term loans that trap low- and moderate-income borrowers in thousands of dollars of high-interest debt. So why do some state legislators want to introduce these predatory financial products to New York?

The Wall Street Journal
By: Laura Saunders
May 26, 2011

The Internal Revenue Service, moving aggressively to collect more taxes from small businesses, is telling companies being audited to turn over exact copies of the electronic records kept in their business-software programs, according to a letter from an agency official to the American Institute of CPAs.

The New York Times
By: David Leonhardt
May 24. 2011

The last four presidents of the United States each attended a highly selective college. All nine Supreme Court justices did, too, as did the chief executives of General Electric (Dartmouth), Goldman Sachs (Harvard), Wal-Mart (Georgia Tech), Exxon Mobil (Texas) and Google (Michigan).

The Huffington Post
By: Sen. Jon Tester
May 25, 2011

Exactly four years ago, hardworking folks across the country finally got a pay raise ten years in the making.

The New Face of Microfinance

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The Huffington Post
By: Nicole Skibola
May 25, 2011

Simonida Cvejic flashes a devilish smile after I inquire whether her bootstrapped success is a cultural byproduct. "My mother's side is Liburni -- maybe that's why I am so stubborn."

The Washington Post
By Ylan Q. Mui
May 25, 2011

Liberal groups rallied around Harvard law professor Elizabeth Warren on Wednesday and renewed calls for her to lead the fledgling consumer watchdog agency, a day after she was accused of lying in a contentious congressional hearing.

The Rich Get Richer

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Brattleboro Reformer
May 25, 2011

In 2009, the federal government offered $384 billion in federal asset building expenditures, such as mortgage interest deductions, property tax deductions, estate taxes and preferential rates on capital gains and dividends, which together account for nearly two-thirds of those benefits.

The Wall Street Journal
By: Maya Jackson Randall
May 24, 2011

WASHINGTON--White House adviser Elizabeth Warren, in a heated House hearing Tuesday, touted the new Consumer Financial Protection Bureau as a vital new financial-markets cop while Republican lawmakers slammed the agency as a powerful financial regulator with too few checks and balances.

The New York Times
May 24, 2011

The Great Recession began with the bursting of the housing bubble. Today, nearly two years after the recession officially ended, the housing market is still in trouble.

The Washington Post
By: Neil Irwin
May 24, 2011

As Republican leaders urge a steep and swift reduction in government spending, they are making an un¬or-tho¬dox argument: that these cuts would strengthen economic growth not only in the distant future but almost immediately.

The Huffington Post
By: Zach Carter
May 24, 2011

WASHINGTON -- Facing heavy government layoffs from budget cuts, the North Carolina State Employees Credit Union says it will no longer seek to garnish the wages of borrowers who fall behind on a debt.

The Huffington Post
By: Robert Schwartz
May 24, 2011

For the past 10 years I have worked in two education sectors frequently tagged with the "creaming" label - charter schools and a nonprofit focused on STEM education for high-potential students. The debate as to whether or not this accusation is true is unimportant. In fact, I am going to tell you that I hope it is true. You see, our urban and rural schools have been doing better at educating lower achieving African American and Latino students in their attempt to close the achievement gap. However, while such schools have been moving students from below basic to proficiency more affluent districts having been moving students from proficiency to advanced and beyond only to exacerbate the opportunity gap.

The Huffington Post
By: Dan Sweeney
May 24, 2011

I flipped through the slideshow on Huffington Post today that ranked the nations with the worst income equality. New Zealand, Italy, the U.K. ... not the countries that first spring to mind. But then I got to the top. The worst countries for income equality: 4. The United States, 3. Turkey, 2. Mexico, 1. Chile.

USA Today
By: Kevin Carey
May 23, 2011

Skyrocketing college tuition is burdening a growing number of students with college loans they can't repay. Since student loans, unlike credit cards and mortgages, can't be discharged in bankruptcy, the financial consequences of default can last a lifetime.

USA Today
May 23, 2011

Government-backed "no-doc" loans given to people with little regard to their ability to repay. Soaring default rates. Taxpayers on the hook for tens of billions of dollars.

The Huffington Post
By: Carol Kellerman
May 23, 2011

The laws that authorize New York City's rent regulation system are set to expire on June 15, 2011. Expansion of rent regulations will not provide affordable housing to more low- and middle-income families in New York City and will only deepen and perpetuate the subsidy that families in unregulated housing are giving to those at all income levels fortunate enough to have rent-regulated apartments.

The Huffington Post
By: Amanda M. Fairbanks
May 24, 2011

LANSDALE, Pa. -- One midnight in April, Sabrina Malik pulls her red Chevy Blazer into her mother's asphalt driveway, removes the keys from the ignition, and stops to take a deep breath.

The Washington Post
By: Dina ElBoghdady
May 23, 2011

A Republican-led proposal circulated Monday would boost the down payment requirement for mortgages backed by the Federal Housing Administration, a move some industry experts said would shut potential home buyers out of the market.

The Wall Street Journal
By: David Benoit
May 23, 2011

More than a million Bank of America Corp. customers who overdrew their checking accounts could recoup some overdraft fees following a settlement that received initial approval from a federal judge Monday.

The Wall Street Journal
May 24, 2011

Anyone playing down the importance of housing at this point in the business cycle is missing the point: Housing is the business cycle.

The Washington Post
By: Jonathan O'Connell
May 22, 2011

Since its founding in 1976 by Muhammad Yunus, Grameen Bank has made more than $9 billion worth of micro-loans to 8 million poor and unemployed borrowers, a track record impressive enough to earn the man and bank the 2006 Nobel Peace Prize.

New America Foundation
By: Mark Huelsman
May 20, 2011

Following in the footsteps of Maine, Rhode Island, San Francisco, and others, North Dakota launched a new initiative Wednesday -- what's being called the Children FIRST program -- that provides college savings accounts at birth. Every newborn in the state will now be eligible for a $100 grant, and as is the case with Maine's Harold Alfond Challenge, the child must be signed up before his or her first birthday.

The Huffington Post
By: Jennifer Mishory
May 20, 2011

Amidst this tough economy, and perhaps because of it, many young people are trying something bold: they're starting a business. Where there are no jobs to be found, and the unemployment rate for young adults is astronomical, these new businesses can create jobs, spur innovation, and grow our economy.


The Huffington Post
By: Richard Buery
May 20, 2011

As our nation's political and economic upheavals play out in policy choices, it is clear that our country has not yet come to terms with what I believe is our most existential threat: economic inequality and social immobility. The 2010 Census revealed the greatest income disparity between rich and poor Americans since the Census Bureau began tracking household income in 1967. Today children are far more likely than they were 30 years ago to remain in the socioeconomic class into which they were born. Despite these distressing facts, the words "poverty" or "poor" were not mentioned by Governor Cuomo or Mayor Bloomberg in each of their 2012 "state of" addresses. Even though the few programs that help residents of America's poorest neighborhoods have significantly high benefits -- most notably for disadvantaged children -- and ultimately help to stimulate the economy, each level of governments' investment in these programs is plummeting.

Help Before Borrowing

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The New York Times
By: Maryann Haggerty
May 22, 2011

EVEN though the housing market remains sluggish, Bernell Grier says that her nonprofit agency is hearing from ''record numbers of people'' seeking advice on how home-buying works and whether they're in a position to own now that real estate prices have fallen.

Daily the Pak Banker
May 20, 2011

Karachi, May 20 -- Bank of America announced today that it provided $168.5 billion in community development loans and investments in 2010, benefitting low- and moderate-income (LMI), minority and underserved customers and communities. This capital translates, on average, to approximately $661 million every business day throughout the past year and continues the progress against a 10-year, $1.5 trillion community development goal Bank of America initiated in 2009. Despite adverse economic conditions, the company exceeded the annual run-rate in both 2009 and 2010, providing nearly $337 billion toward the 10-year goal.

Diverse: Issues in Higher Education
By: Jamaal Abdul-Alim
May 20, 2011

Such was the conclusion of a new report released Wednesday by the Pell Institute for the Study of Opportunity in Higher Education.

The Huffington Post
By: Mike Green
May 19, 2011

Each year, many of the 15 million students enrolled in public secondary schools ask the same question: What's the point of staying in school if the choices are a minimum-wage job upon graduation or a minimum-wage job now?

NPR
By: NPR Staff
May 20, 2011

Part of a series on young people and financial literacy

For many 20-somethings, financial independence marks their arrival at adulthood. But it can be a hard place to get to if you're also shouldering a lot of debt.

The Washington Post
By: Lori Montgomery
May 19, 2011

Senate Democrats decided Thursday not to release their spending plan to counter the budget blueprint approved last month by House Republicans, saying they will wait to see whether talks at the White House produce a compromise plan for reining in the national debt.

The Wall Street Journal
By: Maya Jackson Randall
May 18, 2011

WASHINGTON--Seeking to simplify the home-buying process, the new consumer protection agency on Wednesday unveiled mortgage disclosure forms aimed at helping home buyers understand the terms of loans and shop around for the best offers.

Lexington Minuteman (CFED)
By: Thomas M. Stanley
May 12, 2011

Lexington -- On May 5, I hosted a financial literacy forum at the State House on behalf of a bill I filed to establish a financial literacy curriculum in Massachusetts. This legislation will require that public schools teach a financial literacy curriculum developed by the Department of Elementary and Secondary Education to cover consumer financial education, personal finance and personal credit.

The Wall Street Journal
By: Jessica Silver-Greenberg
May 19, 2011

Credit-card issuers are marketing so-called professional cards--formerly reserved for small-business owners or executives--to individuals, a new report says.

The New York Times
By: Catherine Rampell
May 18, 2011

The individual stories are familiar. The chemistry major tending bar. The classics major answering phones. The Italian studies major sweeping aisles at Wal-Mart.

NPR
By: Chris Arnold
May 19, 2011

Part of a series on young people and financial literacy

About 14 million Americans are unemployed and looking for work, and millions more are facing foreclosure. Some have kids in college, and those struggling families must make tough choices about whether to borrow money to pay for school.

The Huffington Post
By: David Espo
May 18, 2011

WASHINGTON -- The White House and key lawmakers are considering reductions in student loan subsidies, farm payments and support for federal workers' pensions as they search for cuts that can clear the way for an increase in the national debt limit, according to officials in both parties.

The Washington Post
By: Michelle Singletary
May 18, 2011

For many families, the cost of higher education is out of reach, while others can manage it only if they take on debt that could take decades to pay off.

The Root
By: Cynthia Gordy
May 17, 2011

In a 2008 study sponsored by Radio One, Black America Today, the majority of participants between the ages of 18 and 30 said they wanted to be entrepreneurs.

The real debt crisis

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The Washington Post
By: Katrina vanden Heuvel
May 17, 2011

It's college commencement season in America, a time of excitement and celebration. For the millions who will graduate this year, the events of this month and next represent not just the end of college but the beginning of a new and meaningful chapter in their lives.

NPR
By: Zoe Chace
May 18, 2011


Morning Edition asked me to do a story about how technology has shaped generational shifts in financial literacy. I didn't want to do it, for reasons that will become clear shortly. But first, let's take the case of Sarah Marczynski and her father, Robert. Sarah, 23, graduated from the University of Tennessee, Chattanooga, last week.

The Washington Post
'By Philip Rucker & Lori Montgomery
May 17, 2011

Since January, six senators have engaged in difficult negotiations and made painful concessions in a politically dangerous quest for something that has long eluded Washington: a bipartisan compromise to control the nation's mounting debt.

The New York Times
By: Michael Cooper
May 17, 2011

From stronger-than-expected tax collections in deficit-ridden California to projected surpluses in struggling states like Michigan and Pennsylvania, a growing number of recession-weary states are finally announcing a bit of good budget news for the first time since the downturn began.

Rapid City Journal (CFED)
By: Journal Staff
May 16, 2011

The South Dakota Indian Business Alliance has formed a partnership with CFED, a national non-profit organization that works to create economic opportunity, to execute the Native Entrepreneurship Investment Research Project through a $50,000 Neighborhood Revitalization Grant from Citi Foundation. The Native Entrepreneurship Investment Research Project will conduct an in-depth market analysis of the small business development environment on South Dakota's nine Indian reservations, and use the results to create an investment strategy with Native community development financial institutions and tribal loan funds to address Native entrepreneur financing and capacity building needs.

The Wall Street Journal
By: Jeffrey Sparshott
May 16, 2011

WASHINGTON--The Treasury Department starting Monday will suspend investments in federal retirement and disability funds, the latest steps meant to keep the U.S. government from defaulting.

NPR
By: Larry Abramson
May 17, 2011

Part of a series on young people and financial literacy

Fairfax County in the Washington, D.C., suburbs has plenty of shopping malls. Finance Park, though, is the only one exclusively for tweenagers. Every eighth-grader in this large, suburban school system must show up at this mock-up of the real world, spend money and act like an adult for a day. Jacque Weir says she was magically transformed into "a single mom with an 8-year-old."

The Huffington Post
BY: Candice Choi
May 16, 2011

-- NEW YORK - Sallie Mae is lowering the interest rates it charges on its student loans. But the price cut likely won't attract a surge of new borrowers.

Contempt for the Poor

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The Huffington Post
By: Pat LaMarche
May 16, 2011

If you work with the poor in the United States it's very easy to believe that this country doesn't like "those people." According to the National Poverty Center nearly fifteen percent of the U.S. lived in poverty in 2009. It's counterproductive to detest 1/6 of the population especially when that translates into loathing fifteen and a half million children.

The Huffington Post
By: Amanda M. Fairbanks
May 13, 2011

NEW YORK -- While one's college graduation is normally a time of jubilation, Megan Muller can more than relate to the sense of defeat that now hangs over the class of 2011.

NPR
By: NPR Staff
May 16, 2011

Part of a series on young people and financial literacy

The amount of money Americans owe on student loans recently exceeded the nation's credit card debt. That may lead many to ask: Is it smart to borrow a lot of money to go to college? Student financial aid expert Mark Kantrowitz says that college debt is OK -- if you're careful.

The Wall Street Journal
By: Jessica Silver-Greenberg
May 14, 2011

Instead of paper checks, Oregon officials pay weekly unemployment benefits by loading the money onto debit cards that come with several unusual fees.

The Wall Street Journal
By: Emily Glazer
May 15, 2011

How can you prepare your child to make dollars and sense of a tumultuous economy? Start as early as possible.

The Washington Post
By: Debbie Cenziper
May 15, 2011

After a grueling summer day that began before sunrise - after four buses, two trains, two jobs and one college class - the only thing 20-year-old Daydette Sesay wanted to do was go home.

CNNmoney.com
By: Les Christie
May 13, 2011

For the first time in years, buying a home may beat renting.

The Washington Post
By: Karen Hube
May 15, 2011

Hube works for the Fiscal Timeshttp://www.thefiscaltimes.com/, an independent news organization that specializes in fiscal and economic matters. It is funded by Peter G. Peterson, who separately supports groups that advocate for long-term debt reduction.

The average American family has a lot riding on the current debate in Washington over whether "tax expenditures" should be placed on the budget chopping block as part of an effort to reduce the federal deficit.

KMBC (IDAs)
May 12, 2011

Matching Funds Help Students Afford College

INDEPENDENCE, Mo. -- While the Great Recession has cost people jobs, income and hurt families, one group that has been hit hard by the economy hasn't gotten all the headlines.

The Wall Street Journal
By: Maya Jackson Randall
May 13, 2011

WASHINGTON (Dow Jones)--Consumer groups have long criticized payday loans, and are expecting the new U.S. consumer watchdog agency to crack down on the expensive products they believe suck struggling consumers into dangerous debt traps.

The Atlantic
By: Kentaro Toyama
May 13, 2011

The United States' yawning income gap between the middle class and the top percentile isn't unique. It's part of a global phenomenon.

Bloomberg
By: Lorraine Woellert
May 13, 2011

House Republicans will seek to cap the bailout of Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac, the government-run companies that have drawn more than $160 billion from taxpayers so far, according to draft legislation.


The Washington Post
By Ylan Q. Mui & Dina ElBoghdady
May 13, 2011

A significant number of Americans are now willing to lose their house to save the stuff that's in it.

The New York Times
By: Binyamin Appelbaum
May 12, 2011

WASHINGTON -- When federal financial regulators next gather to compare notes and coordinate plans, one of the requirements of a banking law intended to prevent the next financial crisis, 5 of the 10 seats at the table will most likely be empty or filled by caretakers.

Bank Fees Attack: The Sequel

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SmartMoney
By: Annamaria Andriotis
May 13, 2011

In spite of new laws -- or perhaps because of them -- banks are finding new ways to charge customers.

After the financial sector imploded, Congress passed sweeping legislation designed to protect consumers from egregious bank charges. And yet, just a few years later, consumers are paying more for checking accounts, getting less for their debit card purchases and, some say, signing up for expensive "protection" programs just to stop a torrent of bank solicitations.

The Huffington Post
By: Arthur Delaney
May 11, 2011

WASHINGTON -- Many states shortchange the jobless by distributing unemployment benefits on debit cards loaded with obnoxious fees, according to a new study by the National Consumer Law Center.

The Washington Post
By Bill Turque
May 11, 2011

The Washington region is a hot zone of student achievement, with leading high schools offering a plethora of Advanced Placement and International Baccalaureate classes to prove that theirs is a rigorous path to college.

The Washington Post
By: Michelle Singletary
May 11, 2011

We the people -- the people who don't have the money to hire lobbyists -- need a strong Consumer Financial Protection Bureau.

The Wall Street Journal
By: Alex J. Pollock
May 12, 2011

Expect another 10 years before U.S. housing prices return to their 2006 highs.

It is nearly five years since the peak of the housing bubble, and that highly leveraged sector, with its $11 trillion in residential mortgage debt, continues to struggle. Home values just posted their biggest quarterly decline since late 2008, largely due to a steady stream of foreclosures.

The Wall Street Journal
By: Nick Timiraos
May 12, 2011

Two lawmakers, a California Republican and a Michigan Democrat, are set to unveil legislation Thursday to replace mortgage giants Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac with at least five private companies that would issue mortgage-backed securities with explicit federal guarantees.

The Forgotten Middle Class

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The Huffington Post
By: Stella Moga
May 10, 2011

Your paycheck is finally here and your mind immediately rushes to all of the monthly expenses you will have to pay: rent, utility bills, insurance, food, credit cards and last of all, the childcare bill. The shows we watch on television of struggling families that we once turned our heads to in disregard, have now become a mirror to our own lives. Many Americans are living paycheck to paycheck and can barely make ends meet. By default, to the government, they are deemed as the working middle class. In lieu of the recession, parents are losing their jobs, not getting raises, and run the possibility of being laid off because of budgetary issues. Parents are required to pay more, and they are receiving much less in return. Many Americans that could afford the best of childcare ten years ago, are now begging to qualify for the education vouchers that they so desperately need. Childcare has become a 'luxury' that they have had no choice but to deny, so that they are able to remain financially stable. Not to mention struggling families with college age children. With the sky rocketing cost of undergraduate education, how can these children ever receive a quality education and not be stuck paying off student loans for the next 50 years? Our financial challenges of today are making it more and more difficult for the next generation of Americans to thrive and succeed.

The New York Times
By: David Streitfeld
May 10, 2011

MONTEREY, Calif. -- By summer's end, buyers and sellers in some of the country's most upscale housing markets are slated to lose one their biggest benefactors: the deep pockets of the federal government. In this seaside community of pricey homes, the dread of yet another housing shock is already spreading.

The Wall Street Journal
By: Angus Loten
May 10, 2011

The U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission is forming a small-business committee to review fundraising rules for small private firms that critics say hinder access to capital and are stunting economic growth.

The Wall Street Journal
By Janet Hook & Carol E. Lee
May 11, 2011

The White House and Senate Democratic leaders, worried that a proposal to cap federal spending could gain traction in Congress, have mounted a drive to discredit the idea.

The Atlantic
By: Megan McArdle
May 9, 2011

According to data from Zillow.com, home prices fell 3% in the first quarter of 2011. This is the largest decline since 2008, and, says the Wall Street Journal, is causing some economists to take a more pessimistic view of how far we are from the market's bottom.

The Wall Street Journal
By Mark Whitehouse
May 7, 2011

$22,900: Average student debt of newly minted college graduates

Forbes
By: Daniel L. Bennett
May 9, 2011

Proponents of increased college participation, and thus subsidization, often argue that college education is the great income equalizer, as college graduates earn more than non-college graduates. While the income differential between the college and non-college educated continues to grow, the reason for the college wage premium may differ from that which is often preached. One economic theory - education as a signaling device - suggests that increased subsidization of college may actually increase income inequality, an effect that is opposite that typically preached by proponents for greater college subsidization. A few points are in order.

Bloomberg
By: Ari Levy
May 10, 2011

For the 25 percent of Americans who don't have credit or debit cards, a startup called PayNearMe Inc. wants to make paying utility bills or transferring money as easy as buying a Slurpee at 7-Eleven.

The Washington Post
By Brady Dennis & Dina ElBoghdady
May 9, 2011

State attorneys general are descending on Washington again this week for negotiations with federal regulators and the nation's largest mortgage servicers over the purpose of a multibillion-dollar fund aimed at helping troubled borrowers.

The Wall Street Journal
By: Naftali Bendavid & Matt Phillips
May 10, 2011

House Speaker John Boehner said Monday that any increase in the government's debt limit should be accompanied by trillions of dollars in spending cuts, and that those cuts should be greater than the amount of the debt-ceiling increase.

The Baltimore Sun
By: Eileen Ambrose
May 8, 2011


Last-minute attempts in Congress to limit the power of the people's agency

The new Consumer Financial Protection Bureau won't assume its powers until July, but efforts are under way to weaken the federal agency before it gets off the ground.

The Columbian (Bank On)
By: Gordon Oliver
May 9, 2011

Clark County program is in the planning stages.

An initiative to help banks put out a welcome mat to low-income households that don't use banking services is being considered in Clark County.

USA TODAY
By: Laura Petrecca
May 9, 2011

Lucy Valena was ready to brew up a java juggernaut.

The Wall Street Journal
By: Jason L. Riley
May 6, 2011

Minimum-wage proponents argue that a higher wage floor will improve the standard of living for poor families. The reality is that higher labor costs reduce employment, especially for young black men.

The summer months will bring summer job seekers, and prospects aren't good for the nation's young adults. Overall unemployment just inched back up to 9%, and the teenage unemployment rate in March was 24.5%. Black teens have been faring worst of all, with a jobless rate of more than 42%.

The Huffington Post
By: Jack Jennings
May 8, 2011

Amid the intense debates about how much progress the nation has made in raising student achievement and whether federal investments in education have produced results, one important trend tends to be overlooked -- namely, the notable gains made by African American and Latino students in reading and math achievement since 1971.

The Washington Post
By: Daniel de Vise
May 8, 2011

Like many students at Anacostia Senior High School in Southeast Washington, Clifford Taylor had college dreams but no college plan. His grades were marginal. By the start of his senior year in August, he hadn't taken the SAT.

The Oxford Press (CFED)
By: Rick McCrabb
May 6, 2011

HAMILTON -- Fewer than 4 percent of Americans saved a portion of their earned income, according to the Corporation for Enterprise Development.

The Wall Street Journal
By: Deborah Solomon
May 6, 2011

Republican senators effectively blocked President Barack Obama's ability to nominate a director for the new consumer financial-protection agency, saying they won't confirm anyone for the post--regardless of party affiliation--unless the agency is restructured.

NPR
By: Zoe Chace
May 6, 2011

The recession hit everyone -- rich and poor and in-between. The recovery, though, hasn't been so democratic; the "in-between" -- people living above the poverty line but below the average wage who made big plans during the last decade -- are now fighting just to get a job.

New America Foundation
By: Stephen Burd
May 5, 2011

Some clues are emerging about how House Republican leaders plan to deal with the budget crisis in the Pell Grant program in fiscal year 2012. In the report accompanying the fiscal year 2012 budget resolution that the House of Representatives approved last month, the House Budget Committee lays out policy options for lawmakers to consider as the appropriations process moves forward.

The New York Times
By: Morgan Smith
May 5, 2011

When Mansoor Kapasi first began taking his students to chess tournaments, the other parents wondered if they were part of a gang.

Forbes
By: E.D. Kain
May 3, 2011

The debate over the 2012 federal budget is largely a debate over the extension of the "middle-class" Bush tax cuts. The controversial Ryan budget passed by the House of Representatives makes those cuts permanent for all earners, and then cuts taxes even lower for the wealthiest Americans. The Obama budget takes a middle-of-the-road approach, extending the cuts only for those Americans who earn under $250,000 a year. The American public is split. According to a recent Gallup survey only 47% of national adults believe that we should redistribute wealth by heavily taxing the rich even though only 35% of adults believe that the current distribution of wealth in America is fair. Meanwhile, 57% of Americans think that wealth should be distributed more evenly across the population.

The Huffington Post
By: Amanda M. Fairbanks
May 4, 2011

NEW YORK -- Noelle Aldrich never planned on moving back in with her parents after graduating from college.

The Washington Post
By: Kevin Sieff
May 5, 2011

When Virginia officials decided every student should take a course on personal finance and economics, their goal was to ensure that high school graduates have practical skills in the wake of the global financial crisis.

The Washington Post
By: Michelle Singletary
May 4, 2011

As with any budget, there is always room to cut.

The New York Times
By: Nelson D. Schwartz
May 5, 2011

Bank of America plans to triple the number of local centers across the country that provide assistance to mortgage customers facing foreclosure, lifting the total to 40 from 12 by early summer.

The Wall Street Journal
By: David Wessel & Damian Paletta
May 5, 2011

GOP leaders and the White House are discussing a deal that would enact strict deficit targets and some spending cuts to win Republican votes for lifting the ceiling on how much the federal government can borrow.

The New York Times
By: Martin S. Feldstein
May 5, 2011

Cambridge, Mass.

REDUCING the budget deficit and stopping the explosion of our national debt will require more tax revenue as well as reduced government spending. But the need for more revenue needn't mean higher tax rates.

The Huffington Post
By: Jennifer Mishory
April 29, 2011

As Congress continues to debate a 2012 budget, Chairman Paul Ryan and others have proposed slashing Pell grants, a program that provides tuition aid for millions of low-income students. They argue that Pell is responsible for the rising cost of college tuition. But this argument is both factually wrong and at odds with the views of the vast majority of Americans who support Pell. It also misses the bigger question: how do we make our higher education system more accessible for young Americans, connect that system to in-demand jobs, and make our country more competitive?

The New York Times
By: David Leonhardt
May 3, 2011

It's obviously been a good week for the Obama administration. But it comes at a dangerous time, for both the administration and the economy. The excitement over tracking down Osama bin Laden could end up making the president and his advisers less panicked over the state of the economy. And they should be a little panicked.

The Atlantic
By: Derek Thompson
May 4, 2011

Half of American tax payers owe no federal income tax, and most of those filers actually net tax benefits from federal income taxes, according to analysis from the Joint Committee on Taxation in a letter to the Republicans on the Senate Finance Committee.

Goodbye, $5 ATM fees

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CNNMoney.com
By: Blake Ellis
May 2, 2011

NEW YORK (CNNMoney) -- Apparently people don't like paying $5 to withdraw their own money from an ATM.

The Washington Post
By: Brady Dennis & Ylan Q. Mui
May 3, 2011

The political tug of war over the new Consumer Financial Protection Bureau will enter another round Wednesday, when House Republicans forge ahead with legislation aimed at curbing the fledgling watchdog's powers even before it officially opens its doors in July.

The Wall Street Journal
By: Emily Maltby
May 3, 2011

There are more Hispanic-owned businesses than Asian-owned businesses. Likewise, there are more black-owned businesses than Asian-owned businesses. But the total sales at Asian-owned businesses exceeds the combined sales at black-owned and Hispanic-owned businesses.

Is Home Ownership Overrated?

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SmartMoney
By: James B. Stewart
May 3, 2011

For generations of Americans, It's a Wonderful Life pretty much sums up the benefits of home ownership. George Bailey takes over his father's savings and loan in Bedford Falls, builds Bailey Park, an idyllic affordable-housing development, and issues mortgages. In the alternative universe where George never lived, there's no savings and loan or Bailey Park; the townspeople have fallen into debauchery as tenants of the usurious Henry Potter; and quaint Bedford Falls, now renamed Pottersville, is home to sleazy nightclubs and pawnshops.

The New York Times
By: Evelyn M. Rusli
May 2, 2011

Kimball Thomas and Davis Smith, co-founders of the e-commerce site Baby.com.br, had just six hours in Brazil to pitch to prospective investors and recruit a promising executive for the chief operating officer role.

The New York Times
By: Binyamin Appelbaum
May 2, 2011

WASHINGTON -- A greater-than-expected increase in tax revenue has extended by about a month, until early August, the federal government's ability to pay its bills without an increase in the debt ceiling, the Treasury Department said Monday.

The Wall Street Journal
By: Randall Smith
May 3, 2011

The willingness of banks to lend money to consumers rose more than it has in 17 years, but sluggish loan growth is weighing on a key measure of profitability.

The Wall Street Journal
By: Naftali Bendavid & Damian Paletta
May 2, 2011

WASHINGTON--Sen. Mark Warner brings a buzzer to meetings of the "Gang of Six" senators who are working to craft a grand deficit-cutting deal. If talks get too tense, Mr. Warner, a Virginia Democrat, hits the button, which intones: "Bull-- detected. Take precautions."

The New York Times
By: Michael Winerip
May 1, 2011

ORLANDO, Fla. -- The bus ride from the homeless shelter to Fern Creek Elementary School was, as usual, raucous. A hundred times, Doretha Brown, the bus driver, had to yell for everyone to sit down. "This noise is what holds us up every morning and evening!" Ms. Brown shouted, although the Collins girls -- Brianna, 8; Tamara, 7; and Sydney, 6 -- could barely hear her above the din.

The Nonprofit Quarterly
By: Rick Cohen
May 2, 2011

San Francisco Chronicle reporter Kevin Fagan has a message for the press: "Considering the unparalleled wealth of this nation, we live in awful times for far too many people, and they show little sign of getting better soon. As a journalist, I feel there has never been a more critical time for reporting on poverty and its byproducts of homelessness and despair."

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