Student loan interest rates double over last month - KFVS12 News & Weather Cape Girardeau, Carbondale, Poplar Bluff

Student loan interest rates double over last month

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Lawmakers failed to reach a deal before their July Fourth break after floating several proposals to stop an interest rate hike on student loans. Lawmakers failed to reach a deal before their July Fourth break after floating several proposals to stop an interest rate hike on student loans.
(KFVS) -

Heartland college students are already working to secure college loans for the fall semester but as of right now the interest rates are twice what they were last month.

Lawmakers failed to reach a deal before their July Fourth break after floating several proposals to stop an interest rate hike on student loans.

The rates on subsidized government loans jumped from 3.4 percent to 6.8 percent. The increase doesn't apply to existing loans, only to new subsidized government loans.

Lawmakers on both sides of the aisle agree the doubled rate is too high, but haven't been able to reach an agreement on how to lower the rates.

"We can get back on track on this and we will when we return in July," said Democratic Senator Dick Durbin of Illinois.

"I think we'll have a bi-partisan solution to that coming up," said Republican Senator Mark Kirk of Illinois. "That's something several senators are working on."

If lawmakers don't act, the rate hike will add thousands of dollars to the cost of a college education for people like Tori Bowden, a Southeast Missouri State University student working at KFVS to pay her way through school.

"It doesn't affect me directly right now, because I'm not paying them back right now," Bowden said. "But when I do finally graduate and get out into the real world, I want to be able to start getting more successful and move up hopefully in whatever career I'm in. Just knowing more and more of that money's going to interest, it’s just discouraging."

Lawmakers return to the capital Monday could schedule a vote as early as Wednesday on the issue.

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