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11 alternatives to cut down on the cost of cash advances.


If you are in need of money and need cash fast? The prospect of fast and simple payday loans for cash could be seen to be a feasible option. But is it really the only alternative?

The Center for Responsible Lending calls payday loans “predatory” due to the legal reason. The easy access that payday lenders have to obtain cash to pay for their payday generally results in cost of borrowing being at the highest amount. According to the CRL estimate that the average annual cost of payday loans of 391 USD. This %…

The potential danger with payday loans lies in the high interest rates but the possibility of them being renewed could pose a risk. If you’re not sure to be in a position to repay the loan on its due date, you should consider to extend your credit. Consumer Financial Protection Bureau warns that some states allow extensions to payday loans. This is only the cost to lenders when you extend the loan period. When you’re done with the day, you’ll be charged costs for renewals, extensions as well as late fees. However, you’ll be held accountable for the original amount. It could result in an costly cycle of credit.

The advantages of cash-on-payday advances aren’t the only option for people facing financial challenges. Here are eleven another way to consider.

Create an arrangement to pay

If, for instance, you’re faced with the expense of the loan or credit card which makes it difficult to cover the necessary expenses, you should be aware of whether you’re capable of accepting an arrangement. Many card issuers offer hardship programs that permit the user to decrease or even eliminate payments that you’re not capable of making. The issuer may offer to lower the interest rate to help you control your debts.

If you’ve had a great relationship with a client in the past , the lender will be more likely to consider the request with a serious attitude. In any situation, it is important to be forthcoming about the situation.

Then you can make an application for an individual account

While banks are known for their inefficiency and openness however, they also have long procedure, but it is important to consider the nearby bank when in need of cash. If you need cash for a particular requirement, a personal loan from the bank or credit union is a good option and cheaper than payday loan.

“It’s more like a traditional loan designed specifically to provide you the money you need to cover the things you’d like to buy or refinance. You’ll be able set the repayment timeframe,” says Andy. Laino. Financial analyst at Prudential.

There is however no restriction on brick and mortar firms. Online lenders such as SoFi and Earnest allow you to review the terms and rates you qualify for, and without needing to conduct a thorough examination to see the score on your. While these lenders aren’t able to offer instant cash as cash advance loans can be but personal loans could be paid into your bank account within two days after the loan has been approved.

“Personal loan is often the most efficient method to lower debt, particularly for people who have significant medical bills or anticipating home improvements that are reasonable in costs,” Laino explains. “When you’re facing an expense which require more careful evaluation, you must consider the possibility of getting a personal loan. 

Credit card access your home equity

Homeowners could be eligible to get an interest-free credit line that is tax-deductible in accordance with Howard Dvorkin, personal finance expert and director of Debt.com. “For those earning a salary that is stable it could be the most efficient way to get funds quickly,” he says. The average HELOC cost is approximately five percent.

Take care to be aware when using your home as a means to make money quickly. “For those struggling financially, making use from the value of their homes could cause the home to be in danger should they are unable to repay this loan” Dvorkin said.

You can also get the loan to offer an alternative to payday loan.

Some credit unions can provide cash advances in exchange for payday cash advances. These are short-term loans designed to stop people who are consumers from payday loans which are characterized by high interest rates.

The loans are available in amounts ranging from 200 to $1,000, with periods ranging from one and six years. A credit company that offered the loan may charge processing fees that could be as high as 20 dollars per month, according to MyCreditUnion.gov. You must be active at the moment of purchase to be eligible for a APAL. You must also be associated with the institution for more than one month to be eligible.

Pay attention to the fact that loans for payday without collateral could be extremely expensive to pay back. The good thing is that the fees for PAL are fixed at 28% according to the law.

Advances of cash, made in cash are protected by credit card.

Cash advances made with credit cards isn’t the most cost-effective choice however, they are more secure than loans made for payday. Most lenders will charge an advance-type fee, typically around five percent and with at least 5-10. The average rate of interest for advances in cash is 25.

The most crucial thing is to repay the loan if the rate of interest is over the limit for. Contrary to balance transferred or purchase balance that earn interest from the moment you make it when you cash advance with credit card. If you let the balance to remain unpaid every month and you take out a loan to meet short-term requirements may become a credit problem that lasts for a long period of time.

It is possible that you may obtain an advance loan from an employer who is your

Cash advances from your pay will help you with cash flow issues. Certain companies do not offer these kinds of loans, and the terms differ. It’s important to keep in mind that it’s a loan that you’ll need to pay back within the timeframe you’ve made to set.

Make an application to submit an application to Paycheck Advance application. Paycheck Advance application

If you’re planning to include it into your budget, and to earn an income that is stable, you could make use of apps. Companies like Earnin as well as Brigit will reimburse you for the amount you received for no cost. There are no charges however some applications let you make gratuitous tips.

Get an amount of money in your retirement savings (k)

A method of taking advantage of another source of income in your workplace that is not part of your earnings and this is through retirement savings accounts, also known in the form of (401 (k). While the general wisdom advises trying to gain access the account before taking money from an account for retirement, that you could gain from it. an option (401 (k) credit may be an option if you’re in a bind.

The loan you take out through an account for retirement (k) is tax-deductible if you adhere to the regulations applicable. This means that you’ll have to be capable of repay the loan on time or in full when you leave your current position and begin an offer for a new position. The loan isn’t subject to approval to credit, and you won’t be charged a fee for interest on the account that you’ve created. If the loan is repaid within one more than one year repay the loan in one year or less, the effect on your earnings in the coming years is negligible. Be sure to notify your employers that you may not permit you to take a look at the benefits of pension plans (k) while you make repayments on your loan. This can slow your progress toward creating your nest savings plan in order to save for retirement.

Visit an Pawnshop

Pawnshops provide secured loans that don’t require credit checks or an extensive application. The money can be obtained quickly by placing the collateral on a thing that’s worth. After you’ve paid off the loan, as well as any costs within the period you’ve pledged to pay for your collateral , it will be refunded. If you don’t repay the loan on time the collateral you promised to remove. You made a promise to.

Be aware that the amount you are required to pay to the pawnshop may be different. The interest rates range from 12 to 240 percent, subject to rules of your state you reside in. The cost of storage and insurance may be a part or the total amount. This is a benefit if you’re unable to repay the loan and want to end the loan, it’s possible to do it without incurring additional costs or affecting your credit scores.

Use a peer-to-peer lending platform

Peer-to peer loans are a wonderful method of receiving cash faster through the connection of investors through an online loan platform such as LendingClub or Prosper. Investors who use these platforms are able to explore the loan options and pick which one they would like to transfer their money into. In exchange, they’ll be required to make payments for interest. There’s a chance that you’ll have to have to pay an initial fee that is a fraction of a cent.

The rates of interest for loans made through P2P are usually extremely low, particularly when the applicant has credit scores that are good. With LendingClub rates, the range is between 10.68 percent and 35.89 APR for one. The process for applying is usually less complex as compared to traditional banking. P2P loans can offer some other advantages. “A P2P loan can be more entertaining compared conventional banking” Dvorkin adds. Dvorkin.

The can request relatives or close relatives

When you’re contemplating becoming in debt because of the high cost of interest as well as other charges that are excessive is a significant worry, you may be thinking about reaching out to your family member or a friend of yours to seek financial assistance.

It’s not easy to grasp, but it’s an option you can consider if you wish to stay clear of the cost of interest and fees that come to payday loan. Be aware that borrowing from a friend you trust can turn a casual friendship into one that is formal. It is crucial to make sure that you’re able to repay the person whom you borrowed money from as the relationship may be destroyed in the event you fail to adhere to the conditions of the contract. Family members shouldn’t lend the amount they are in a position to.

Will personal loans become more expensive in 2023?


Image source: Getty Images

There are reasons to think they might.

Key points

  • Personal loans allow you to borrow money for any purpose.
  • Despite this flexibility, 2023 may not be the best time to pull one off.
  • Borrowing in general could become more expensive in 2023, to stem rising inflation.

If you need money, whether to cover home repairs, renovations or medical expenses, you might be inclined to turn to a personal loan. The advantage of personal loans is that you are not obligated to finance a specific asset, whereas with a mortgage, for example, you can only use the proceeds of your loan to finance the purchase of a house.

Personal loans also tend to offer the advantage of relatively affordable interest rates. And that’s important, because the lower the interest rate on your loan, the less money you spend when you borrow.

But while it’s easy to see the appeal of personal loans, they may not be your best borrowing option next year. Indeed, personal loan interest rates could rise, making these loans a less affordable route than usual.

Discover: These personal loans are the best for debt consolidation

More: Prequalify for a personal loan without affecting your credit score

Why Personal Loan Interest Rates Might Rise

There are different factors that determine the rate you get on a personal loan. One factor is your credit score, and it is an important factor.

Since personal loans are unsecured, that is, they are not tied to a specific asset, lenders rely on your creditworthiness as a borrower when disbursing this money. The higher your credit score, the less risk a lender thinks it takes. And lenders tend to reward low-risk borrowers with lower interest rates.

But another factor that goes into personal loan interest rates is general market conditions. And there are reasons to believe that borrowing will be more expensive across the board next year.

The Federal Reserve has aggressively raised interest rates in an effort to calm inflation and give consumers some much-needed relief. When rates rise, people tend to borrow less money, which could lead to lower spending. And while that might sound like a bad thing, we actually need to slow down spending a bit so that supply chains can catch up with demand and prices can come down.

But while higher borrowing rates can help slow the pace of inflation, they are likely to make life harder for consumers, including by leading to higher monthly loan payments. And so that’s a good reason to potentially avoid a personal loan next year. Signing one could mean paying a lot more interest than usual.

Other borrowing options to consider

Although personal loans can be quite affordable, next year you could pay more. And so, if you’re a homeowner, it pays to compare personal loan rates to home equity loan rates and see which option gives you the most competitive borrowing.

Many people are sitting on large amounts of equity in their homes since property values ​​are rising nationwide. And so if you’re in this boat, it’s worth seeing if a home equity loan will result in lower monthly payments than a personal loan.

On the other hand, if you don’t own a home, a personal loan could really become your most affordable bet in 2023 – even if you’re stuck with a higher rate through no fault of your own.

The Ascent’s Best Personal Loans for 2022

Our team of independent experts have pored over the fine print to find the select personal loans that offer competitive rates and low fees. Start by reviewing The Ascent’s best personal loans for 2022.

Senator Karla May’s “May Report” for the week of September 19, 2022 – Missouri Senate


Last week, my fellow lawmakers and I returned to the State Capitol to convene the annual veto session and an additional legislative session called by the Governor to deal with income tax cuts and various agricultural provisions. .

Veto session

Each year, the Missouri General Assembly meets for the constitutionally required veto session to discuss whether or not to override one of the governor’s vetoes. A two-thirds vote of the Missouri Senate and House of Representatives is required to override a veto.

Earlier this summer, the governor vetoed House Bill 2090, which included a provision that would allow qualified taxpayers to claim a $500 tax credit for those earning less than $150,000 and a $1,000 credit. $ for couples earning less than $300,000. The governor preferred to give an income tax cut to all Missourians, so he called lawmakers back for an extra session to pass this legislation. The Governor also vetoed the 1720 House Bill, citing a desire to establish a six-year sunset on farm tax credits included in the bill, instead of the two-year sunset that was adopted in HB 1720.

This year, both houses of the Legislative Assembly took no action on vetoed bills, and we adjourned to end the veto session on Wednesday, September 21.

Extraordinary session

The Governor has called lawmakers back for an additional legislative session to address his concerns about HB 2090 and HB 1720. The General Assembly can only pass laws on topics that the Governor has specified in his call, so we will focus on income and farm tax cuts. tax credits.

Senate Bills 3 and 5 would lower Missouri’s top tax rate from 5.3% to 4.95% starting in 2023 and contain triggers to continue lowering the top tax rate to 4.5% as long as Missouri’s economy grows. This legislation would also eliminate the lowest tax bracket. The Missouri Senate passed these bills on Wednesday, September 21 and sent them to the Missouri House of Representatives for consideration.

Senate Bill 8 was also introduced during the extra session to address the governor’s concerns. The bill includes several agricultural provisions, including the wood energy tax credit, the meat processing facilities tax credit, the ethanol tax credit, the biodiesel retail tax, biodiesel production tax credit, urban farm tax credit, rolling stock tax credit, farm machinery sales tax. Exemption and tax credits for agricultural production. This act also establishes a specialty crop loan program for family farmers and expands the definition of “small farmer” in the Family Farms Act to include farms with gross sales of less than $500,000 per year. The Missouri Senate passed SB 8 on Wednesday, September 21, and sent it to the Missouri House of Representatives for consideration.

At this time, we expect to complete an additional session in the next two weeks, so I look forward to sharing more of our progress with you then.

America’s reliance on credit cards is growing. Fed rate hike will make things more painful


Interest rates on nearly all credit cards and home equity lines of credit will rise after this latest rate hike, and borrowers with variable interest rates will quickly notice the difference, said senior industry analyst Ted Rossman. at Bankrate.

“It’s pretty much right now, within a reporting cycle or two,” he said.

At just over 18%, the average annual percentage rate (APR) on new credit cards is less than a full percentage point from its all-time high of 19% set in July 1991, according to Rossman. “The effect on existing credit card borrowers is probably worse,” he said, due to the rate hikes the Fed has already undertaken this year. “Chances are your credit card is already 2.25 percentage points higher than it was in March.”

Despite rising rates, credit card debt is fast approaching the all-time high set in the fourth quarter of 2019, Rossman said.

Personal finance professionals say the best strategy when rates rise is to pay down or consolidate debt, but as the prices of all kinds of goods and services rise, Americans are gorging themselves on debt of all kinds. Borrowers are opening new cards and charging more on the ones they already have.

“What they’re doing is borrowing future income by going into debt. That’s why we’re seeing a huge increase in credit card borrowing right now…to maintain their current standard of living,” Steve Rick said. , Chief Economist at CUNA Mutual. Band.

In August, the Federal Reserve Bank of New York said total household debt rose $312 billion in the second quarter to a total of $16.15 trillion. Credit cards were a big cause: in the second quarter, 233 million new credit accounts were opened, the largest increase since 2008. Of the new debt that accumulated during this quarter, 46 billion dollars were credit card debt.

TransUnion Credit Bureau found that there are more credit cards today and there are more debts on these cards. TransUnion said 161.6 million people in the United States – about half of the total population – have access to a credit card in the second quarter, a jump from 153.3 million a year earlier. During the same period, the average debt per borrower rose from $4,817 to $5,270.

Rising prices are fueling America’s appetite for credit. “Inflation is definitely a big factor. If the same services and goods they’ve always consumed are suddenly more expensive, consumers can use credit to help with short-term financing of those purchases,” said Michele Ranieri, Vice President of the United States. research and consulting at TransUnion. “For many consumers, credit is not just additional debt, but also serves as a necessary expense vehicle.”

Ranieri called this a positive development – ​​as long as borrowers can keep up.

“The fact that more consumers have access to credit is positive until we see a significant increase in delinquencies,” she said. However, she acknowledged that the rapid adoption of Buy Now, Pay Later plans, which are not usually reflected in conventional banking and consumer credit reports, could cloud the true picture of some debtors’ position.

“It takes years to accumulate the behaviors of new products like BNPL in order to analyze them accurately and integrate them into consumer credit scores and credit decisions,” she said. “We have been actively working with lenders to ensure that as much debt as possible is reflected in consumer credit reports.”

Low income borrowers, worse credit adding debt

Bank of America data reflects higher borrowing rates among lower-income Americans. Credit utilization, a ratio of the amount of available credit a person has used as a percentage of their credit limit, has been increasing since the start of 2021. According to Bank of America, households with annual incomes below $50 $000 have a credit of about 28%. utilization rate, compared to about 23% for households with income over $125,000.

“We recognize that the consumer is under pressure, but strong wage growth, a robust labor market and their higher savings deposit levels … are all buffers,” said David Tinsley, senior economist at Bank of America. Institute.

TransUnion found that over the past year, unsecured debt held by subprime borrowers has increased by about four percentage points. Observers worry that if economic conditions deteriorate, that debt could quickly become unmanageable, especially since subprime borrowers pay higher interest rates and typically earn less than prime borrowers.

Transunion said the rate of serious default — debt past due for 90 days or more — in the consumer credit landscape is within its pre-pandemic range, but has started to rise.

This is seen by some as a troubling sign, especially with further rate hikes on the table between now and the end of the year that will raise borrowers’ interest rates even further. “We’re starting to see delinquencies go up a bit, especially around subprime. There are sort of warning signs, especially around the margins,” Rossman said.

More debt means less money for holiday shopping

The combination of higher interest rates and higher prices overall could be a headwind for retailers this holiday season, especially if rising home heating costs eat up even more of the average family’s budget.
How does inflation affect my standard of living?

“It looks like the holiday shopping forecast is on the wrong side of the inflation divide,” Rossman said. “There are reasons to think that people will withdraw.”

A number of executives have already sounded the alarm bells, and the next round of corporate earnings will show if the dominoes are already starting to fall. Last week, FedEx reported weaker than expected results and withdrew its full-year forecast, raising concerns on Wall Street about what this portends for the months ahead, including the all-important winter season. retailer parties.

“We don’t expect this Christmas to be as robust as it was last Christmas,” Rick said. “It’s going to take a toll on people’s spending when they spend more money on interest…Something has to give. You only have a limited amount of income to split.”

Is cash-in refinancing a good idea? | Mortgages and advice


If you’ve been paying your mortgage for several years or if your home has appreciated in value, a mortgage refinance with drawdown allows you to access some of the value stored in your home. With a cash-out refinance, you’ll get a new mortgage for more than you currently owe, allowing you to keep the difference in cash.

A cash-out refinance can be a good idea if you have a good reason to tap into the value of your home, such as paying for college or home renovations. A cash-out refinance works best when you’re also able to get a lower interest rate on your new mortgage, compared to your current one. This can be difficult to do in a rising rate environment like today. So when does it make sense to consider cash refinancing?

What is a cash refinance?

A cash-out refinance is when you take out a new mortgage to pay off your existing mortgage and the new mortgage is more than you owe on your existing mortgage. The difference is paid to you in cash.

Cash refinances allow homeowners to tap into the equity in their home to pay for expenses such as medical bills, home renovations, debt consolidation, and other major purchases.

In 2021, 42% of all refinances were cash outs, according to Freddie Mac, probably due to low interest rates at the time, which made refinancing very important. Average rates, however, increased throughout 2022, exceeding 6% for the first time since 2008 on September 15, 2022.

Although rates may be higher, homeowners continue to build equity in their homes. In the second quarter of 2022, mortgaged homes saw their net worth increase by 27.8% compared to the previous year, according to CoreLogic. That’s an average increase of $60,200 per borrower in one year. With more equity to work with, cash refinancing might still be attractive to some people.

Regardless of the economic climate, it’s important to understand the pros and cons of cash refinances and calculate your personal numbers before moving forward.

How a cash-in refinance works

A cash refinance works the same way as a regular refinance, except the amount of equity in your home plays a bigger role. Lenders typically approve cash refinance for up to 80% of your home’s appraised value. This is called the loan-to-value ratio. (A regular refinance can usually have a higher LTV.)

Sean Grzebin, head of consumer origination for Chase Home Lending, shares this example: Say your home is valued at $200,000 and you owe $100,000 on your mortgage. This means you have $100,000 in home equity. With a maximum LTV of 80%, your new loan can be up to $160,000. Paying off your existing mortgage would leave you with around $60,000 in cash (minus fees or closing costs if you roll them into the loan).

Withdrawal rollover requirements

Getting approved for a cash-out refinance isn’t all that different from a regular refinance, but some lenders may hold you to higher standards, says Grzebin. “Cash-in refinances typically require a higher credit score and lower loan-to-value ratio to ensure the customer’s ability to repay the loan with higher monthly mortgage payments,” he says.

In addition to meeting the lender’s debt-to-equity ratio, credit score and income standards, you may also need to provide a “withdrawal letter,” says Nicole Rueth, senior vice president of the Rueth team at OneTrust Home Loans. “This is an additional document required for the loan that simply states your intention to use the money. It could be as simple as debt consolidation or home renovations,” says Rueth.

Another consideration is that you generally won’t get a valuation waiver with a cash refinance, adds Rueth.

How much money can you get from a cash refinance?

The key number to remember with a cash-out refinance is an 80% loan-to-value ratio, as that is the loan limit set by Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac. In other words, you can borrow up to 80% of your home’s appraised value. The more equity you have at the start, the more money you can withdraw.

Some lenders also have caps on the amount of money you can receive, even if your LTV would be less than 80%. Be sure to ask as you evaluate different lenders.

Advantages and disadvantages of cash-in refinancing


  • Best Rates. If interest rates are lower than what you’re currently paying, or if your financial situation has improved such that you might qualify for better rates and terms, then a cash refinance might be beneficial, Grzebin says.
  • Lower monthly bills. If you decide to use cash refinance for debt consolidation, you may be able to reduce your overall monthly expenses and relieve some financial pressure. This is especially true if you have high interest consumer debt.
  • More cash. If a cash injection helps you achieve a personal financial goal, whether it’s a home improvement or paying a medical bill, a cash refinance can provide you with the cash you need. Funds from a cash refinance can also be used to buy back a share from one property to another, which is why it’s a popular tool for divorced couples.

The inconvenients

  • Too much debt. In the event that your living situation changes after a cash refinance, you could end up putting your home at risk if you can’t afford to pay the new loan.
  • Higher payout. A cash-out refinance could result in higher payments than your previous mortgage, especially if you are unable to secure a lower interest rate. “Cash-in refinances may also require a slightly higher interest rate than standard refinances,” says Grzebin.
  • Go upside down. If the value of your home goes down, a cash-out refinance could result in you owing more than the home is worth. With the current 80% LTV requirement, however, Rueth says the risk is lower now than it was before the 2008 mortgage crisis, when lenders allowed more aggressive borrowing.

Withdrawal Refinance Alternatives

If you need the cash but don’t want to go the cash-out refinance route, you have other options that allow you to leverage the equity in your home.

Home equity line of credit

A HELOC exists as a separate loan, creating a second lien on the property. It’s not really a loan, however; it’s a line of credit you can draw on if needed. Closing costs are minimal. For the first five or ten years (depending on the terms), you only have to repay the interest on the amount borrowed, or a small minimum payment. After this period, you must begin to repay the principal plus interest.

The downside is that the interest rate is variable and tied to the prime rate. “As the Fed rate goes up and it’s expected to go up more than 4%, those home equity lines of credit will go up as well. Probably up to 6% or even up to 7%,” Rueth says. “So that higher interest rate on that variable line could be painful because that mortgage payment fluctuates.”

Home Equity Loan

A home equity loan is another name for a second mortgage. You take out a second loan against the equity in your home, so you’ll have an extra payment to make each month. The appeal of a home equity loan is that you can opt for a fixed interest rate. The key to making this product work for you is to make sure you don’t borrow more than you can afford to repay.

Refinancing by withdrawal HELOC Home Equity Loan
A loan payment Two loans to repay Two loans to repay
Generally fixed rate Floating rate Fixed rate
Lump sum Line of credit to be used as needed Lump sum
Easier to manage More flexibility in how much you borrow Predictable cost
Higher closing costs Reduced or no closing costs Reduced or no closing costs

Is cash-in refinancing a good idea?

“Cash-in refinancing can be productive — even in a rising interest rate market — when long-term circumstances suggest success,” Rueth says.

For example, if you have large debts with high interest rates, consolidation could help you in the long run. “Typically in a higher mortgage rate environment you also have growing consumer debt in interest rates. So if that is the case consolidating debt into a long-term fixed mortgage product could have a lot of sense,” says Rueth. .

The other main factor when considering a cash refinance is the equity in your home. Given that home values ​​have increased significantly, this could be a good time to act for some people. “We have opportunities today that many families might not have had just two years ago,” says Rueth.

Slack plans to strengthen its presence in the enterprise segment


Slack, a collaboration app aims to strengthen its footprint in the enterprise segment with a focus on middle-market organizations, the company’s senior executives said.

He believes that Salesforce’s established presence in the enterprise segment can be leveraged to deepen its presence in the segment. Matt Loop, Asia-Pacific manager at Slack, said activity area“Salesforce has an incredible presence in India with a ton of relationships in the enterprise segment, an area where we want to continue to grow our relationships with said organizations.”

Empowerment of organizations

Both Salesforce and Slack have similar missions of empowering organizations on their digital transformation journey. We align with many factors that bring value to customers. Slack is becoming the core of Salesforce’s overall offering, he added.

The company said it aims to provide services to traditional businesses that are still undergoing full digital transformation. It also intends to deepen relationships with customers who have already adopted the platform by building a broader ecosystem.

Medium-sized organizations

Rahul Sharma, Country Manager at Slack, said, “We are seeing strong interest from enterprise customers in India. This is due to the movement of talent from middle market organizations to enterprises. However, Slack is not limited to the middle market and enterprises, as the goal is to serve all organizations across the country, he added.

In addition to the enterprise segment, Slack also intends to deepen its presence in middle market organizations. “A substantial portion of Slack’s customers are midsize businesses,” Sharma said. The company said it has a strong presence in the small and medium enterprise (SME) and startup market. “We want to help SMB communities, the next unicorns that are currently being built from accelerators, grow their businesses on Slack,” Loop said.

Published on

September 21, 2022

Insurance and credit card companies focusing on Asian markets

KB Kookmin Bank officials open KB Daehan Specialized Bank Plc. in Phnom Penh in 2020.

South Korean credit card and insurance companies are rapidly expanding their overseas business into China and Southeast Asia.

Shinhan Card is currently doing business in Vietnam, Indonesia and Myanmar. In the first half of this year, its overseas net profit was 11.33 billion won, up 400 percent from a year ago. KB Kookmin Card has branches in Southeast Asia in Cambodia, Indonesia and Thailand, and their net profit has increased eightfold to more than 12 billion won during this period.

Woori Card founded TUTU Finance in Myanmar in 2016 and Woori Finance Indonesia earlier this month. BC Card acquired 67% of Indonesian IT developer Cranium on August 12. The developer’s clients include several state-owned companies such as Telkom and Bank Mandiri.

Samsung Fire & Marine Insurance aims to increase its overseas general insurance sales ratio to at least 50% by 2027 from the current level of 30%. Its overseas branches are currently located in seven countries, including China, Indonesia, Vietnam and Singapore.

Hanwha Life Insurance entered the Vietnamese market in April 2009 and later expanded its overseas business to China and Indonesia. Mirae Asset Life Insurance currently owns half of Prevoir Life Insurance in Vietnam and is strengthening its presence in the local variable insurance market.

The concentration of these companies in Asian markets is explained by the fact that their credit card and insurance sectors have yet to be further developed in the fast-growing and high-population region. For example, Indonesia’s population and annual economic growth rate are about 280 million and 5%, and Vietnam’s are about 100 million and 8%, respectively.

“Credit card use is still very rare in China and Southeast Asia and this is due to the lack of personal credit reporting systems for setting credit limits,” a source said. industry, adding, “That’s why big data from South Korean credit card companies credit scoring based on credit rating has a chance there.”

Amazon adds layaway as another installment payment option


Amazon has introduced a layaway option on some of its items, giving shoppers another installment payment option. (iStock)

Amazon has offered its shoppers a new way to fund their purchases that offers the benefits of an installment plan without the hassle of fees.

Amazon recently unveiled Amazon Layaway, a new payment option that allows shoppers to put certain items on hold and pay for them in five installments with no associated fees or credit checks. Plans can be started with any credit or debit card.

At checkout, buyers make an upfront payment of 20% of the total purchase cost. The item is then reserved and the price is locked in, with the remaining balance paid in monthly installments over the next four months.

If buyers need to cancel the layaway plan or fail to make payments, Amazon said it will refund all amounts paid without service and cancellation fees.

“Structured layaway programs like Amazon’s…reduce consumer risk and provide predictability,” said Zachary Johnson, associate professor of decision science and marketing at Adelphi University. “Consumers benefit because they are able to pay off future debt at a pre-determined rate or, if life changes, cancel the purchase for a refund or pay off their layaway products a little faster.

“Business-wise, Amazon benefits because its layaway program effectively provides it with interest-free loans taken out by consumers,” he continued.

Amazon created the program in response to customer demand for a year-round online payment option that doesn’t require credit checks and has no hidden interest or fees, according to a person familiar with. the program. .

A personal loan can be another option to help finance a major purchase or project. Credible makes it easy to see your prequalified personal loan rates from various lenders, all in one place.

Layaway vs. buy now, pay later

Layaway differs from buy now, pay later (BNPL), which has recently gained popularity.

“The benefit of Buy Now, Pay Later for consumers is the ability to receive purchases when needed, and there’s generally no interest rate on those purchases,” said Ansley Hoke, vice president. senior president of marketing at ScanSource. “However, with layaway, people can reserve products in advance and refund the purchase over a period of time, only receiving the product once it has been paid for in full.”

BNPL suppliers – such as Affirm, Klarna and Paypal – partner with retailers to allow shoppers to pay for purchases in installments at checkout. These interest-free payments are usually due a few weeks after purchase. However, missed payments may result in late fees and other penalties.

Layaway is part of a growing list of flexible payment methods that Amazon currently has. The retailer already offers monthly payments, which is a BNPL-like program, as a payment option for certain items. Although the program does not require a credit check and is not reported to credit bureaus, the retailer said it determines eligibility based on a customer’s purchase history with Amazon.com. Unlike layaway, the consumer must link to a valid credit card to make scheduled payments.

Amazon also offers its customers an BNPL option through its partnership with Affirm. The option requires a credit check and based on that, the consumer will be charged a finance charge, which can be an annual percentage rate (APR) of anywhere between 10% and 30%.

“By offering a more traditional layaway program, Amazon customers who don’t want or don’t qualify for credit and don’t want to risk their credit rating now have the ability to split large purchases,” Patrick Haggerty, a BNPL said expert and director of regulatory consultancy firm, Klaros. “The catch is that the customer has to wait until they’ve made all the payments before they receive the merchandise. This won’t appeal to everyone, but for Amazon and other retailers looking to increase sales, it good to offer options.”

If you have accumulated debt under BNPL programs and need help paying it off, you may want to consider using a personal loan. Visit Credible to find your personalized interest rate without affecting your credit score.

Flexible payment options could appeal to consumers in tough times

Experts said recession and inflation concerns are driving consumer demand for more choice in flexible payment options.

Financing options that allow installment payments, such as layaway and BNPL, can attract buyers who may not qualify for other forms of credit. These options may also attract buyers in an inflationary or difficult economic environment.

“For consumers, one of the reasons layaway and BNPL are growing in popularity is that it provides financial inclusion for people who don’t have access to credit cards or any other source of traditional loans. “said Vipin Porwal, CEO and Founder of Smarty. “Many programs also come with no interest rate for a certain period of time, so it can be a great tool for buying items that one wants to acquire right away while they work out issues with their finances right now. about inflation.”

If you are struggling financially, you might consider taking out a personal loan to help you pay off your debts at a lower interest rate. Visit Credible to find your personalized interest rate without affecting your credit score.

Do you have a financial question, but you don’t know who to contact? Email the Credible Money Expert at [email protected] and your question might be answered by Credible in our Money Expert column.

Iowa’s largest credit union lays off employees

Iowa State Flag. (Source: Shutterstock)

Iowa’s largest credit union recently laid off 42 employees due to “market corrections and rising interest rates.”

“This action was necessary due to market corrections and rising interest rates that directly impact GreenState’s operations,” GreenState Chief Marketing Officer Jim Kelly said in a prepared statement. “Employees affected by this move have received severance pay, as well as extensive insurance coverage.”

Prior to the layoffs, the $10.6 billion credit union had 761 full-time employees and 14 part-time employees, according to its NCUA call report for the second quarter.

Most of the workforce reductions have been in GreenState’s mortgage or commercial banking operations.

Kelly added that there were “no immediate plans for further layoffs”.

He also said the proposed acquisition of Premier Bank, canceled in August, had not been factored into the credit union’s decision to lay off employees.

“We still plan to be in Nebraska by the end of 2023,” he said. “In fact, we continue to seek locations in this market for our future branch network.”

Nationally, in the financial services sector as a whole, demand for mortgages has fallen by almost a third since last year due to rising interest rates.

Credit unions issued $72.5 billion in first and second lien residential loans in the second quarter, down from 14.2% a year earlier and down 1.1% from the first quarter, according to a CU time analysis of NCUA data. Additionally, first mortgages fell 5.3% from $58.1 billion in the first quarter to $55.1 billion in the second quarter.

In addition to GreenState, other Hawkeye State financial institutions have laid off employees, including Wells Fargo, one of the nation’s largest home lenders, which operates its mortgage division headquarters in Des Moines.

The bank’s mortgage division laid off 372 employees from May to Sept. 14, according to Iowa Workforce Development. Employers are required to report planned layoffs to affected employees and the state agency.

Wells Fargo plans to lay off 157 additional employees in Iowa by Oct. 25, for a total of 529 employees.

In its second-quarter financial filings, Wells Fargo said its home loans fell 53% from a year ago.

I’m afraid of being rejected if I reapply for my credit card John Lewis | consumer affairs


I’ve had a John Lewis card since the 1980s – first when it was a store card, then when it changed to a credit card.

It’s my preferred method of payment, both in-store and in-store, and I pay off the full balance each month. I’ve been doing it for 40 years.

But, following the company’s change of lender, they are asking cardholders to reapply and I’m afraid my application will be denied.

My sister-in-law, who is retired and a longtime cardholder, has been turned down, and the Trustpilot site is full of horror stories about denied claims or reduced spending limits.

Last year I gave up a job with a six figure income, sold my house and left London. I am two years below the legal retirement age, but I have settled my finances so that my purchasing power is greater than that of my thirty-something daughters.

If I apply and get rejected, will it affect my credit rating?

TM, Eastbourne

Your letter is one of a number of John Lewis cardholders who have encountered problems with the lender transfer from HSBC to NewDay – a process which requires customers to reapply and pass a credit check .

You were so worried that a rejected application would lower your credit score that you decided not to apply.

However, it would have been nice to go through the initial eligibility check which would have told you the likely outcome of the application. This involves a “soft search” and would not have impacted your credit score.

If you cleared this hurdle and proceeded with the full application, at this point a “difficult search” would appear on your credit file.

John Lewis says NewDay has a regulatory obligation to assess the creditworthiness of every customer and says 96% of those who have applied to date have been accepted.

Social media and news articles tell a different story, as previously spending customers were furious at being turned down or given tiny spending limits.

Other readers were upset that the apps are online and require a cellphone for security reasons. They also question the decision to no longer accept payment by check or at the counter.

John Lewis says using mobile for authentication protects customers from fraud, and the decision to stop accepting other payment methods is due to a lack of demand.

With its affluent clientele, for many this card is about rewards (points earned through spending are converted into John Lewis vouchers) and not additional purchasing power, so turning away loyal shoppers is a huge focus. It’s not the only rewards card available, so it’s time to shop around.

We welcome letters but cannot respond individually. Email us at [email protected] or write to Consumer Champions, Money, the Guardian, 90 York Way, London N1 9GU. Please include a daytime phone number. Submission and publication of all letters are subject to our terms and conditions

How buy now, pay later affects your ability to get a home loan – Forbes Advisor Australia


That dress you bought on Afterpay six months ago could impact your ability to get a home loan.

Banks and lenders will now treat any buy it now, pay later (BNPL) agreement as an outstanding debt when lenders assess home loans, which could fall on first-time home buyers.

Previously, buy now, pay later debts were listed as living expenses when borrowers assessed loans. But the industry watchdog, APRA, intervenedinsisting on changing the rules.

APRA clarified in a letter to lenders that buy now, pay later programs must be included in debt-to-income ratios. This change in lending standards must be followed by all banks and lenders from September this year.

Simply put, this means banks will have to consider your purchase now and pay later as “debt” when determining how much you can borrow. Coupled with rising interest rates, this may be another blow for Australians looking to buy their first home.

Size the sector

There are over 30 buy now, pay later companies in the Australian market, including stalwarts Afterpay, Zip, Klarna, Openpay and Commonwealth Bank’s new offering, StepPay, and NAB’s Now Pay Later.

According to a research report in the economic impact of BNPL by the Australian Finance Industry Association, there are 5.9 million active accounts in Australia, with a collective value of $11.9 billion. The average transaction value is $151, with some providers lending for purchases of up to $30,000.

Buy Now, Pay Later has been particularly popular among young Australians, who tend to view the modern version of lay-buy as a better alternative to credit cards. The industry exploded during the pandemic as trading volumes increased 43% in the first year Covid-19 hit, A Deloitte study shows.

The industry has so far escaped regulation, but consumer groups are pushing the government to put in place new rules to keep Australians out of debt, particularly as economic conditions change and the cost of living increases.

A recent CHOICE survey revealed that over the past 12 months, about 21% of people who used a buy now, pay later loan in the past 12 months used it to pay for essentials, such as food, groceries or utilities. The consumer group warns that while many consumers are using buy now, pay later responsibly, this is a potential debt trap for others.

Stricter restrictions are needed

Payments services chief executive Brad Kelly said the impact on customers buy now, pay later is a potential doomsday scenario, as lenders can operate under their own code of practice. He describes the area as a “small but noisy corner of lending space”.

The recent inclusion of buy now, pay later in debt for home loan application purposes means that a dress you bought 12 months ago through a lender could affect whether a lender Whether or not you approve your home loan application, he says.

“Even if you paid for the dress, the fact is that having a relationship with a buy now, pay later business will impact your ability to buy a home under this new change,” says Kelly.

The reason for this, he explains, is that lenders will be able to see that you had a buy-now-pay-later loan on your credit score, but they can’t see how much you’ve borrowed, or whether you’ve paid. this debt. back, he said.

This means the loan could be for $50 or up to $30,000. And the more buy-now-pay-later deals you’ve made, the more likely you’ll get away with it when trying to get a loan.

“Because of the way the law is written, the bank has to assume that these agreements are all maxed out because no credit checks have been performed (by BNPL’s suppliers) on these transactions,” Kelly explains.

Navigate a home loan

The best approach for potential lenders is to look at your debt-to-equity ratio, which refers to the proportion of your income that is used to pay off your debts. Paying off any purchase now, paying your debts later will lower your debt to income ratio, making you a better customer to lenders.

Keep in mind that debt could signal to a lender that you are having trouble managing your finances. If you have multiple buy now, pay later debts, that could also impact your credit score.

The key here is to not become too reliant on the industry to make purchases and to ensure your buy now pays off later debts are paid off when applying for a home loan.

In fact, some banks may require that your purchase be made now, that you pay off all of your debt later before they even consider approving your home loan application.

How to improve your chances of getting approved for a home loan if you used BNPL:

  • Don’t have multiple accounts with a range of lenders because it’s hard to quantify how much you owe.
  • Establish a savings plan and, ideally, ensure that you repay your financial commitment on time.
  • Don’t buy now, pay later if you have other debts and financial commitments, as this sends the message that you are not good at managing your finances.
  • Don’t try to hide the fact that you bought now, pay the debt later. Be upfront about it.
  • Try to pay off your purchase now, pay off all debt later before applying for a home loan.
  • Check your credit score before applying for a home loan and inquire about any past purchases now, pay future debts, or other unrecognized lending activity.
  • There is a range of buy it now, pay later companies and each offer different terms and conditions. Read the fine print to find out how your debt will be handled.

Reddit’s top tips for new credit card users


Image source: Getty Images

A credit card can be a powerful personal finance tool when used responsibly.

Key points

  • Getting a credit card can be a smart way to learn how to manage your money while building up credit.
  • The Reddit forums offer plenty of advice for new credit card users.

When used with care, credit cards can be a beneficial financial tool. You can use them to build your credit and learn how to manage your expenses responsibly.

Reddit is a great resource for new credit card users. You can learn about topics that are new to you while other users share their experiences and knowledge. There are many helpful personal finance resources on Reddit, including helpful credit card tips. Before you get your first credit card, make sure you’re ready. You may find the following tips for new credit card users helpful.

Pay your card balance in full

Reddit user MissPickleChips suggests new card users never carry a balance. She notes that just because you can wear a balance doesn’t mean it’s a good idea. You’ll be charged credit card interest if you don’t pay your balance in full each month, which can get expensive.

Check it out: This card has one of the longest 0% interest intro periods.

More: Consolidate your debt with one of these top-rated balance transfer credit cards

Only buy what you can afford

User pleiop recommends treating your credit card like a debit card. Only use your credit card to buy items you know you can afford. If you spend more than you can afford, you risk incurring credit card debt, which can quickly become a serious financial problem.

Aim for a card with no annual fee

Are you looking for credit card options? User gdq0 suggests giving priority to requesting a card with no annual fee. If you’re new to using credit cards, a card with no annual fee is the best and most affordable way to learn how to use a credit card responsibly.

Consider applying for a secured credit card

Reddit user GastonKobe recommends newbies apply for a secure card. If you’re new to credit cards and have little or no credit, applying for a secured credit card might be a good idea.

This is an ideal option if you are unlikely to be approved for an unsecured card with no annual fee. Keep in mind that secured credit cards require you to make a refundable deposit. Once approved and you make a deposit, you can spend up to the amount of your deposit.

You can show that you are responsible by making good spending and payment decisions. After a while, your card issuer may decide to upgrade your account to an unsecured credit card. If that’s not an option for the secured card you’re starting out with, you can always apply for an unsecured credit card at a later date.

Don’t rush to close your first credit card account

ToxicLogics suggests never closing your first credit card. It’s beneficial to have an older credit card on your credit report because your credit age makes up 15% of your FICO credit score.

If you get a no annual fee credit card as your first card, plan to keep that card in your wallet for many years. This will help you increase your credit age.

If you have a card with an annual fee, you can call your card issuer and request that this card be downgraded to a $0 card so that the account remains on your report.

If you’re new to using credit cards, that’s okay. We all have to start somewhere. The tips above can help you better plan for using your new credit card to build credit, avoid paying interest, and develop responsible credit card usage habits.

If you’re looking for your first credit card, check out our list of the best credit cards to help narrow down your options.

The best credit card waives interest until 2023

If you have credit card debt, transfer it to this top balance transfer card guarantees you an introductory APR of 0% in 2023! Plus, you won’t pay any annual fees. These are just a few of the reasons why our experts consider this card a top choice to help you control your debt. Read our full review for free and apply in just 2 minutes.

The scientific phenomenon that ruined your remains


According to Serious Eats, warmed flavor (WOF) is caused by the breakdown of polyunsaturated fatty acids (PUFAs) in the cell membranes of meat, poultry and fish. During the cooking process, the meat cells begin to break down, allowing fat to enter the muscle for tender, juicy results. However, cell breakdown also releases iron molecules, which react with oxygen, and the aforementioned PUFAs.

This creates free radicals and unstable atoms that damage cells as part of disease and aging, according to Medical News Today. They process the fatty acids in the meat, giving it an appetizing aroma, although Serious Eats points out that the meat is still safe to eat at this stage. If it were spoiled meat, it would have a strong sour smell. According to Serious Eats, WOF is worse in poultry and fish because they have higher PUFA concentrations than beef or pork.

To reduce WOF in cold-cut chicken and turkey, many companies process the meat with phosphates and vacuum pack it while still hot. Phosphates neutralize free iron molecules and a vacuum seal keeps oxygen out to prevent a chemical reaction. There’s not much you can do to prevent WOF in a home kitchen, but follow the advice of the pros and try to limit your meat’s exposure to oxygen from the moment it comes off the heat. As soon as you’ve served everyone, pack your leftovers in airtight, heat-resistant containers.

I like cashback cards better than travel cards. here’s why


Image source: Getty Images

Should we opt for cash back cards like me?

Key points

  • Some credit cards offer cash back on purchases, while other cards offer travel rewards.
  • I prefer cashback cards because of the flexibility they offer.

Credit cards can be broadly divided into a few different categories. Some are travel cards that offer bonus rewards for purchasing travel and often encourage you to use those rewards to pay for more travel. Others are cashback cards that reimburse you for all of your purchases.

Although I’ve had both travel cards and cash back cards, I much prefer the ones that offer cash back. Here’s why.

This is the big advantage of cashback cards over travel cards

The main reason I prefer cashback cards over travel credit cards is the increased flexibility these cards offer.

Check it out: This card has one of the longest 0% interest intro periods.

More: Consolidate your debt with one of these top-rated balance transfer credit cards

In most cases, if you have a travel card, you get the best value for your rewards points or miles if you redeem them for a vacation. You usually need to book through a special portal set up by your credit card company in order to get the maximum value for your points. And you often need to use your rewards points or miles for specific types of travel-related expenses, such as flights or hotels.

Now, if you’re absolutely sure that by the time you earn enough rewards to redeem, you’ll want to use those rewards to pay for trips, you might not mind. But, as the past few years of COVID-related uncertainty have demonstrated, it can be hard to know what direction your life will take and whether you’ll still be able and willing to use your points for a vacation in a few months or a few years. when you have collected enough.

I have two small children so it can be particularly difficult to predict what types of trips we will be taking and when as it very much depends on how my children are developing at the time and their ability to take the plane without disturbing the other passengers too much. I don’t want to be forced to book trips just to get the most out of my credit card, so cashback cards work better for me.

With a cashback card, I can Choose use the money I get from my credit card company to pay for a vacation if I want to. But I can also choose to do other things with the funds (for example, most often I invest the money in a brokerage account to save for my future). I’m just not willing to give up the flexibility that a cashback card provides.

What kind of cards are right for you?

Figuring out which credit card is best for you can be tricky, as it depends on both the types of things you tend to spend money on and your preferences for how you want to redeem your card rewards. credit.

If you want to cover the cost of your trips by using credit card points to pay for them, a travel credit card might be the ideal choice. But if you’re like me and want more choice in how to use your rewards without feeling like you have to book trips to maximize their value, a cashback card may also be the best fit for you.

The best credit card waives interest until 2023

If you have credit card debt, transfer it to this top balance transfer card guarantees you an introductory APR of 0% in 2023! Plus, you won’t pay any annual fees. These are just a few of the reasons why our experts consider this card a top choice to help you control your debt. Read our full review for free and apply in just 2 minutes.

Mortgage borrowers could save thousands with higher credit scores: Zillow analysis


According to Zillow, mortgage borrowers can save big by taking this crucial step before buying a home. (iStock)

Although mortgage savings may be harder to come by in a high interest rate environment, one step borrowers can take to potentially lower their monthly mortgage payments is to improve their credit scores.

A recent Zillow Analysis said borrowers with an “excellent” credit score – between 760 and 850 – could save up to $103,626 in mortgage interest payments over the life of a 30-year fixed-rate loan, based on the current price of a typical home, $354,165. Buyers with “fair” credit scores – between 580 and 669 – can pay up to $288 more on their monthly mortgage payment than those with “great” credit.

“When considering buying a home, the best first step you can take is to fully understand your financial situation, what you can afford, and your outstanding debts or obligations,” said Libby Cooper, vice president of Zillow. Home Loans.

She added that some steps low-credit borrowers could take to improve their scores include disputing any reporting errors and paying off as much debt as possible. This could increase the home loan a borrower qualifies for and potentially help them save hundreds in monthly mortgage payments.

If you think you’re ready to shop around for a mortgage, consider using Credible Marketplace to help you easily compare interest rates from multiple lenders in minutes.


Equifax sent bad credit scores to lenders

Zillow’s analysis shed light on the high cost of reporting errors by any of the big three credit bureaus for borrowers. Equifax recently revealed that it sent poor credit scores to lenders, potentially affecting borrowers’ interest rates or even causing their loan applications to be turned down.

Equifax said as many as 300,000 people have experienced a score change of 25 points or more, enough to move a borrower’s credit rating from good to fair or from fair to poor. However, lenders typically pull scores from all three credit bureaus when underwriting a mortgage,

Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac probably only bought a small number of loans affected by bad credit, according to the wall street journal. Mortgage lenders who may have purchased higher-rated loans before the error was disclosed owed money to government-sponsored entities (GSEs). GSEs should, conversely, reimburse lenders for fees charged on loans underwritten at lower scores.

If you want to take advantage of current mortgage rates, you might consider refinancing your loan to lower your monthly payment. Visit Credible to find your personalized interest rate without affecting your credit score.


High interest rates could mean borrowers are locked in longer

The current high interest rate environment only exacerbates the situation for borrowers with low credit ratings, as it leaves them little room to refinance at higher rates, even if their credit rating improves. , Zillow said. This potentially leaves many borrowers stuck longer with the high cost of poor credit.

Homebuyers nationwide are also facing record house prices, adding to affordability issues. House prices rose 15.8% a year in July, according to CoreLogic. Meanwhile, borrowing rates have roughly doubled since last year, when rates were below 3%, according to Freddie Mac Data. Mortgage rates have fluctuated this year, but currently hover around 6%.

One silver lining to rising house prices is that Americans have accumulated a record amount of equity in their homes. According to data reported by ATTOMreal estate data curator.

Rick Sharga, executive vice president of market intelligence at ATTOM, said that after the continued appreciation of home prices, “it’s no surprise that the percentage of equity-rich homes is the highest than we’ve ever seen and that the percentage of seriously underwater loans is the lowest.”

Sharga noted that even if home price appreciation begins to slow, homeowners are likely to continue to leverage the record amount of equity they have for the remainder of 2022.

If you want to take advantage of rising home prices, you might consider taking out cash refinancing to help pay off debt or fund home improvement projects. Visit Credible to find your personalized interest rate without affecting your credit score.

Do you have a financial question, but you don’t know who to contact? Email the Credible Money Expert at [email protected] and your question might be answered by Credible in our Money Expert column.

Martha’s Vineyard: Governor Ron DeSantis takes credit for sending 2 planes carrying migrants to Massachusetts



Two planes carrying migrants were sent by Florida Gov. Ron DeSantis to Martha’s Vineyard on Wednesday night, his office said, infuriating Democratic politicians and prompting a frantic response that included humanitarian aid from locals and assistance from officials. from Massachusetts.

It is the latest in a series of moves by Republican governors to ferry migrants to northern liberal enclaves to protest what they say are insufficient federal security efforts at the southern border. Located off the coast of Massachusetts and long known as a posh summer destination for wealthy vacationers, Martha’s Vineyard provided an unusual and unexpected place for migrants to send.

Lawmaker says DeSantis used migrants for his own political advantage

“We’re not a sanctuary state, and it’s better to be able to get to a sanctuary jurisdiction, and yes, we’ll help facilitate that transportation so you can go to greener pastures,” DeSantis said Thursday, a day after claiming credit for sending the two planes to the island. “Every community in America should share the burdens. Not everything should fall on a handful of red states.

Massachusetts U.S. Attorney Rachael Rollins told reporters Thursday she would speak with Justice Department officials about DeSantis sending the migrants to Martha’s Vineyard, saying she did not yet have enough information. information to say whether he had broken any laws in doing so. She added that their first priority was to make sure people arriving were treated with respect.

About 50 migrants arrived at Martha’s Vineyard on Wednesday on two planes, according to Massachusetts State Senator Julian Cyr, a Democrat who represents Martha’s Vineyard. The two planes arrived just after 3 p.m. ET, Cyr said, and white vans took the migrants to Martha’s Vineyard Community Services.

Edgartown city administrator James Hagerty told CNN on Thursday that officials believe all of the migrants were from Venezuela, and a local fire chief said earlier in the day that the migrants included seven families. , with four children aged 3 to 8. .

“There was no advance notice to anyone in Martha’s Vineyard or Massachusetts that these migrants were coming to my knowledge,” Cyr said.

City officials and state officials are in contact on next steps, but Cyr stressed that the current focus is on supporting the migrants who have arrived.

In addition to island residents’ response efforts, the Massachusetts Emergency Management Agency is expected to be on the ground to coordinate efforts.

Terry MacCormack, press secretary for Republican Massachusetts Governor Charlie Baker, said in a statement obtained by CNN affiliate WBZ, “The Baker-Polito administration is in contact with local authorities regarding the arrival of migrants in Martha’s Vineyard. Currently, short-term accommodation services are provided by local officials, and the administration will continue to support these efforts.

DeSantis’ claim drew a strong backlash from Democratic officials in Florida and the White House.

“Even for Ron DeSantis, this is a new low,” Florida Democratic President Manny Diaz said in a statement. “There’s nothing DeSantis won’t do, and nobody he won’t hurt, in order to score political points.”

Charlie Crist, the Democratic candidate for governor of Florida, said in a statement, “This is just another political stunt that is hurting our state. Tonight, the 4.5 million immigrants who live in Florida must be wondering if they are next.

And the White House on Thursday denounced DeSantis’ decision and Republican Gov. Greg Abbott of Texas’ decision to intentionally send two busloads of migrants to Vice President Kamala Harris’ residence in the nation’s capital. Those migrants were safely transported to a local church, according to a Department of Homeland Security spokesperson.

White House press secretary Karine Jean-Pierre accused governors of using migrants as “political pawns” and said their actions constituted a “cruel and premeditated political coup”.

The latest measures follow in the footsteps of Republican Governor Doug Ducey of Arizona, who began sending migrants to Washington, DC, earlier this year. Abbott has since expanded its efforts to include New York and Chicago.

Migrants released from government custody often move to other cities in the United States during their immigration process. It is unclear whether the migrants who arrived at Martha’s Vineyard knew where they were going.

Despite the unexpected arrivals, some islanders have worked quickly to provide some essential services.

“This is a community gathering to support immigrant children and families. This is the best in America,” Massachusetts State Rep. Dylan Fernandes, a Democrat who represents the island, said in a series of tweet which included photos of the migrants receiving food and beds.

“Our island has sprang into action by bringing together 50 beds, giving everyone a good meal, providing a play area for the kids, making sure people have the healthcare and support they need. need,” Fernandes wrote in another Tweeter. “We are a community that comes together to support immigrants.

Martha’s Vineyard officials say they are working with a coalition on the island to provide “shelter, food and care for people” who arrived on the island on Wednesday, according to a statement from the Management Association. county emergencies.

The Edgartown Police Department said no additional supplies were needed for the migrants who arrived Wednesday and asked people to refrain from dropping off additional items to keep traffic flowing.

A media representative from Martha’s Vineyard Community Service helping coordinate services for migrants praised the community’s response, saying some local restaurants were offering free food.

Resources from a programmatic perspective include coordinating food, clothing and translation services, the representative said.

The migrants slept at St. Andrew’s Church on Wednesday night, which often helps house those in need, the representative said.

Some of the migrants on Thursday morning said they were cold and the service center helped bring more clothes, the representative said.

Meanwhile, Hagerty said on Thursday that migrants would have been told before arriving on the island that they would find employment and accommodation there.

“They received community service packets before they got off the plane,” he said, adding that he was not sure which third party provided the information packets to the migrants.

CORRECTION: This story has been updated to reflect that the Massachusetts Emergency Management Agency is involved in the response to the arrival of migrants. It has also been updated with additional reports.

Apple Card credit chief quits startup


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As Apple prepares for new financial services, Apple Card credit manager Abhi Pabba has left the company

Pabba will join a credit card startup called X1 to be its chief risk officer, a job he knows well. Prior to Apple, Pabba worked at Capital One on credit card authorizations, analyzing cardholder metrics such as consumer spending, number of credit accounts that end up delinquent, and average credit scores. approved.

“I would say these three [metrics] are of a pretty high standard, but you know, Capital One takes great pride in being very, very thorough with these things, and of course Apple had similar standards as well,” Pabba said in a report of CNBC.

His new job at X1 may involve developing the company’s underwriting policies. The startup plans to use data such as bank account access, FICO scores, or information from companies such as Plaid, a financial data transfer company.

Apple is working on a new service with Apple Pay called Apple Pay Later. It’s a feature coming later in 2022 that offers to split purchases into four weekly payments.

Although Apple continues to partner with Goldman Sachs for the Apple Card, it has created a subsidiary called Apple Financing LLC for Apple Pay Later. It will operate independently from Apple’s main corporate entity.

EXPLANATION: What you need to know about “buy now, pay later”


NEW YORK (AP) — Since the start of the pandemic, the “buy now, pay later” option has exploded in popularity, especially among young and low-income consumers who may not have easy access to traditional credit.

If you’re shopping online for clothes or furniture, sneakers, or concert tickets, you’ve seen the option at checkout to split the cost into smaller installments over time. Companies like After-payment, To affirm, Klarnaand PayPal all offer the service, with Apple expected to enter the market later this year.

But with the increase in economic instability, the unpaid ones too. Here’s what you need to know:


Called “interest-free loans,” buy-it-now-pay-later services require you to download an app, link a bank account or debit or credit card, and sign up to pay in weekly or monthly installments. Some companies, such as Klarna and Afterpay, perform soft credit checks, which are not reported to credit bureaus, before approving borrowers. Most are approved within minutes. Scheduled payments are then automatically deducted from your account or charged to your card.

The services generally don’t charge you more than you would have paid upfront, which means there’s technically no interest, as long as you make the payments on time.

But if you pay late, you may be subject to a flat fee or a fee calculated as a percentage of the total you owe. These can reach $34 plus interest. If you miss multiple payments, you could be barred from using the service in the future, and the delinquency could hurt your credit score.


In the United States, buy-it-now and pay-later services are currently not covered by the Truth in Lending Act, which regulates credit cards and other types of loans (those repaid in more than four installments).

This means you may have a harder time settling disputes with merchants, returning items, or getting your money back in the event of fraud. Companies can offer protections, but they are not obligated to do so.

Lauren Saunders, associate director at the National Consumer Law Center, advises borrowers to avoid linking a credit card to buy now, pay later applications whenever possible. If you do, you lose the protections you get from using the credit card while exposing yourself to owing interest to the card company.

“Use the credit card directly and get those protections,” she said. “Otherwise it’s the worst of both worlds.”


Because there are no centralized reports on Buy Now, Pay Later, these debts won’t necessarily show up on your credit profile with major credit rating agencies.

This means more businesses can afford you to buy more items, even if you can’t afford them, because lenders don’t know how many loans you’ve taken from other businesses.

Payments you make on time are not reported to credit rating agencies, but missed payments are.

“Right now, buy now, pay later usually can’t help you build credit, but it can hurt,” Saunders said.

Elyse Hicks, consumer policy adviser at Americans for Financial Reform, a progressive nonprofit, said people might not be considering seriously enough whether they will still be able to afford the payments in the future.

“Because of inflation, people may think, ‘I’m going to have to get what I need and pay for it later in these installments,'” she said. “But are you still going to be able to afford the things you’re affording now six months from now?”


Retailers accept buy-it-now fees and pay for services later as products increase basket sizes. When shoppers have the option of paying for their purchases in installments, they are more likely to purchase more goods in one go.

When Apple recently announced it would be creating its own buy now, pay later service, 23-year-old Josiah Herndon joked on Twitter about “paying for 6 carts of (things) I can’t afford with Apple, Klarna, Afterpay, PayPal Pay in 4, shop, pay in 4 and confirm.

Herndon, who works in insurance in Indianapolis, said he started using the services because it took him a long time to get approved for a credit card because his age meant he didn’t have no extensive credit history. He has since used them to pay for high-end clothes, shoes and other luxury goods. Herndon said he aligns payment schedules with his paychecks so he doesn’t miss payments, and called the option “very convenient.”


If you have the ability to make all payments on time, buy now, pay later, loans are a relatively healthy, interest-free form of consumer credit.

“If (the loans) work as promised, and if people can avoid late fees and don’t have trouble managing their finances, they have a place,” said Saunders of the National Consumer Law Center.

But if you’re looking to boost your credit score and are able to make payments on time, a credit card is a better bet. The same applies if you want strong legal protection against fraud and clear, centralized loan reporting.

If you’re unsure whether you’ll be able to make payments on time, consider whether the fees charged by buy-it-now and pay-later companies will incur higher fees than the penalties and interest charged by a credit card company or other lender.


As the cost of living rises, some shoppers have started splitting payments on essentials, rather than big-ticket items like electronics or designer clothes. A Morning Consult poll released this week found that 15% of ‘buy now, pay later’ customers use the service for routine purchases, such as groceries and gas, raising alarm bells among financial advisors .

Hicks points out that the growing number of overdue payments is a sign that buy now, pay later could already be contributing to unmanageable debt for consumers. A July report from ratings agency Fitch found app chargebacks rose sharply in the 12 months to March 31, up 4.1% for Afterpay, while chargebacks on credit cards were relatively stable at 1.4%.

“The growing popularity of this is going to be interesting to see over these different economic waves,” Hicks said. “The immediate fallout is what’s happening now.”


The Associated Press receives support from the Charles Schwab Foundation for educational and explanatory reports aimed at improving financial literacy. The independent foundation is separate from Charles Schwab and Co. Inc. The AP is solely responsible for its journalism.

Copyright 2022 The Associated Press. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed without permission.

Democrats want to bring back Biden’s child tax credit since it reduced poverty

  • A measure of the poverty rate fell to its lowest level last year, according to a new report from the Census Bureau.
  • Expanding the Child Tax Credit has helped cut child poverty by about half, and some Democrats want to bring it back.
  • Poverty could rise next year since programs like direct payments were only temporary.

The poverty rate fell to 7.8% in 2021, the lowest level on record due to extraordinary federal assistance last year, according to a new Census Bureau report released Tuesday.

Much of that stems from stimulus checks, enhanced unemployment benefits and a monthly child allowance briefly established as part of President Joe Biden’s stimulus bill.

The new report also indicates that the number of children living in poverty has been reduced by approximately half. The data comes from the Supplemental Poverty Measure, a measure that takes into account federal assistance such as food stamps, the child tax credit and wages. The official poverty rate, which does not take into account aid such as MPS, rose to 11.6%.

The PMS rate for children was 5.2% in 2021 after being almost twice as high at 9.7% in 2020. In 2009, the PMS rate for those under 18 was 17.0% .

Experts said the enhanced child tax credit was among the federal relief programs with the biggest impact.

“This is what policy success looks like,” Chuck Marr, vice president of federal tax policy at the Center on Budget and Policy Priorities, told Insider. “This is a historic achievement to reduce child poverty by a record amount through the expansion of the Child Tax Credit.”

“Generally, you might see a steady decline,” Joshua McCabe, a policy pundit at the libertarian-leaning Niskanen Center, told Insider. “But in this case, at least for the kids, it was a pretty big drop.”

Marr said that “what led to this reduction in poverty was that for the first time the child tax credit was fully available to low-income children, just as it is available to children in the middle class”.

He added that since the expanded child tax credit has expired, “the challenge now is for Congress to extend it.”

Some Democrats want to restore the expanded child tax credit

The Enhanced Child Tax Credit provided up to $300 per monthly check per child to parents for six months. But resistance from Republicans and Sen. Joe Manchin of West Virginia prevented Democrats from expanding it as part of their ill-fated Build Back Better plan in 2021. No child benefit was included in the Democratic bill. on health, climate and taxes adopted last month.

Now some Democrats like Sens. Sherrod Brown of Ohio and Michael Bennet of Colorado want to use an expiring portion of the 2017 Republican tax cuts to bring Republicans to the negotiating table for a deal by year’s end. The White House supports them, Axios reported.

“We shouldn’t be extending corporate tax relief at the end of this year without also extending the expanded child tax credit,” said Bennet, Brown, Sen. Cory Booker of New Jersey and Reps. Rosa DeLauro of Connecticut. , Ritchie Torres of New York, and Suzan DelBene of Washington said in a statement Tuesday.

These figures follow a recent comprehensive analysis by the research organization Child Trends, which found that child poverty has fallen by 59% since 1993, with children of all races and states having less need for multiple parameters during this period.

Nearly 28% of children were classified as poor in 1993, according to the researchers, “poor” defined as not having the income deemed necessary to meet basic needs. By 2019, that metric had fallen to around 11% — and that’s not counting what temporary pandemic relief has done to further reduce that.

Research from Child Trends suggests that the expansion of the social safety net has only helped reduce child poverty over the years, even in light of economic crises like the Great Recession.

Sharon Parrott, president of the Center on Budget and Policy Priorities, said in a statement without the child tax credit expansion, “some 2.1 million additional children would have lived in families with incomes below the poverty line”. This number was also highlighted in a Census Bureau article.

There was also some other positive news from the Census Bureau on Tuesday as well. The share of Americans with health insurance soared to 91.7% in 2021, a slight increase from the previous year. This is partly due to the enhanced Affordable Care Act grants made available to people under the stimulus act. It allowed low-income Americans to pay a small amount or nothing for private health care.

Without measures like the expanded child tax credit, poverty likely increased in 2022.

“I certainly fear that without these economic impact payments and child tax credits, we will see an increase in poverty in 2022,” Elise Gould, senior economist at the Economic Policy Institute, told Insider. “So we know that some of these measures have helped reduce things like food insecurity. So, unfortunately, I think without them we’re going to see an increase in hardship in 2022, even though we’ve had a growing economy. .”

Everything you need to know about the cheetah relocation project, the species | Latest India News


Eight cheetahs will fly from Namibia to Kuno National Park in Madhya Pradesh on Saturday for the reintroduction of the species to India after it was declared extinct in the country seven decades ago in 1952. The big cats were vaccinated, fitted with satellite collars, and are currently isolated at the Namibian center of the Cheetah Conservation Foundation (CCF) in Otjiwarongo. Here’s everything you need to know about the project, the species based on information from CCF, an organization dedicated to saving the cheetah in the wild that has coordinated with Indian authorities and scientists for translocation for 12 years. :

What is the status of the cheetah? What are the most recent census details and where are the populations distributed?

According to the study “Disappearing spots: The global declin of cheetah Acinonyx jubatus and what it mean for conservation” published in Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences (PNAS), there are fewer than 7,100 cheetahs left in the world. The CCF estimates that the number should be somewhat higher, but still less than 7,500. This explains several micro-populations in the Horn of Africa that were not included in the PNAS study, some of which are currently studied by the CCF.

The cheetah is listed as vulnerable by the World Conservation Union’s (IUCN) Red List of Threatened Species. Two subspecies, the Asian cheetah (Acinonyx jubatus venaticus) and the Northwest African cheetah (Acinonyx jubatus hecki) are classified as critically endangered. The historical distribution of the cheetah in Africa covered a substantial part of the continent, but due to the contraction of its range in the last century, the cheetah is only found in 9% of its historical range, of which 77% is found outside protected areas. The species is nearly extinct throughout its Asian range except for a remnant population in Iran of about 20 or fewer individuals. Acinonyx jubatus jubatus is the cheetah of southern and eastern Africa and its range includes the eight countries of Namibia, Botswana, South Africa, Zimbabwe, Angola, Zambia, Tanzania and Kenya.

It is the largest population of wild cheetahs in the world. Smaller and fragmented populations of Acinonyx jubatus soemerengii, the Horn of Africa cheetah, also called the Somali cheetah, are found in parts of Ethiopia and some countries in the Horn of Africa, although that their number has never been officially recorded.

What was the checklist for selecting suitable habitat for translocation to India, type of prey base needed, how many square kilometers per adult needed, etc. ?

Our research shows that in the semi-arid regions of Namibia, cheetahs use a huge home range of around 1500 km2. Home range size requirements in India are likely to be lower due to more productive habitats. It is imperative that potential threats to cheetahs at release sites are addressed or plans are in place to mitigate them. A habitat suitability survey should be conducted at each site to ensure that there is sufficient vegetation to support viable prey populations to support introduced cheetahs over the long term. Such studies have been conducted at potential release sites. The reintroduced population must be protected from anthropogenic threats and the potential impact of unusually high competition between cheetahs and other predators must be managed. Due to the cheetah’s large home ranges and a tendency to occur at low densities, release sites must be part of a larger suitable landscape or metapopulation management is required.

How and when did African and Asian cheetahs diversify into distinct subspecies?

Online research tells me that cheetahs in Southeast Africa and Asia diverged from each other 50,000 to 100,000 years ago. The divergence time between A. j. venaticus and Aj jubatus was estimated 4,700 to 67,400 years ago. The extent of the separation of Aj venaticus from the African subspecies was unclear. mtDNA data placed the separation between Aj jubatus and A. j. venaticus slightly more recent than that of Aj jubatus and Aj soemerengii. Microsatellite data suggest that the divergence with Aj soemmerengii is the most recent event. It is important to keep in mind that the divergence values ​​between Aj venaticus and the other subspecies might have been stochastically increased due to a recent postulated bottleneck in Aj venaticus. O’Brien et al (2017) estimate a divergence time between Aj venaticus and Aj jubatus around 6500 years ago.

In what type of climate do African cheetahs survive and would they be able to adapt to conditions in India?

Cheetahs are very adaptable and had a wide distribution until 100 years ago, especially in parts of India. They will be able to survive most climatic conditions in India. In some parts of Africa, where cheetahs are found, temperatures can vary from very very hot during the day to cold at night. Cheetahs can adapt to seasonal changes. They also face extreme rainfall and wet seasons in Africa, much like in India. For hunting, cheetahs do well in open savannas and grasslands and can also be found in areas with moderate woody ground cover. Cheetahs also benefit from tall grass or bushy areas that allow them to remain undetected while stalking their prey. Habitat at release sites in India is an important consideration, and CCF believes the cheetah will do very well in Indian landscapes.

What were the factors to consider for the success of the translocation and individual survival?

Assessing the success of cheetah translocations is complicated. The results of many incidents are not published and those that are published potentially suffer from positive publication bias. Successes are more likely to be published than failures. Success is generally based on reproductive output, but programs often use different definitions of this term. A meta-analysis of documented cheetah translocations determined that at least 727 cheetahs were translocated to 64 sites in southern Africa between 1965 and 2010. Six of the 64 release sites were considered successful based on natural recruitment (births ) exceeding adult mortality three years after introductions. began.

In many other projects, the number of cheetahs released was low and no long-term monitoring was carried out. If such long-term monitoring had been implemented and documented, other sites could have been considered successful. The main factor associated with breeding success in a carnivore translocation program is the suitability of the release site for the target species and, in the case of outdoor releases, the suitability of the surrounding area. Important characteristics of the release site include habitat and prey availability, potential for intra- and interspecific competition, and the ability of the animal to leave the site.

Have transfers already been made in Africa or to other continents?

In Namibia, CCF began translocation research in the early 1990s. CCF teams have translocated over 100 Namibian cheetahs to help support populations in other parts of Namibia and in South Africa. His rehabilitation research began in 2005 and since then he has rehabilitated over 65 orphaned cheetahs and assessed and released over 650 wild cheetahs trapped in the Namibian landscape.

CCF research paved the way for India. The first translocated cheetahs in Namibia were released into fenced and unfenced national protected areas in the 1960s and 1970s in South Africa, to reintroduce or reinforce existing populations. Legislation passed in South Africa in the 1960s returned the right to use wildlife to landowners, paving the way for the development of private reserves. In 1991, landowners in South Africa began supplying private reserves with cheetahs for tourism, and translocations increased between the mid-1990s and mid-2000s. To mitigate conflict, a compensation-relocation program was conducted in South Africa between 2000 and 2006. Cheetahs perceived as livestock predators were captured by landowners and moved to private reserves and national parks. But vacant territories encourage the immigration of new individuals, which can increase human-wildlife conflicts. Predator removal is counterproductive to encouraging landowners to co-exist with large carnivores, and the impact of repeated removals on wild populations has been the main reason for the suspension of this program in South Africa.

What is the translocation protocol?

In 2010, CCF’s Laurie Marker wrote a document that outlines the logistical steps to bring a small group of male and female cheetahs from southern Africa or another range state along with wild cheetahs to begin the process. of introduction. The animals would first be placed in large fenced areas to adjust to their new environment. They would be fitted with satellite collars to allow scientists to track their movements and monitor their health. After a short stay, they would be released into a larger enclosure, to familiarize themselves with their new environment, where they would stay for a month or more before being released into the National Park. Their movements would be monitored by research teams, and if a cheetah strayed too far, the animal would be brought back to the park. This document has been developed over the years, and now it has been absorbed into the 310-page Action Plan for Cheetah Introduction in India.

What role does the CCF play in the project?

The CCF is assisting the Supreme Court of India Appointed Committee of Conservation Experts to introduce the African cheetah to the Indian landscape by participating in site visits, conducting assessments, training field officers and identifying appropriate cheetahs for the project. It is also helping the Namibian government prepare the Namibian cheetahs that will make the transcontinental journey. Members of the CCF introduction team will accompany the cheetahs in India from the CCF center in Otjiwarongo, Namibia to Kuno National Park.

Major credit card companies will soon classify purchases at gun stores


Major credit card companies are reclassifying purchases at gun stores and ammo stores — a change that could pull the curtain back on gun purchases.

Visa, American Express and Mastercard will begin implementing the plan, separating gun and ammunition purchases from other types of purchases for the first time. They were previously classified as general merchandise.

This decision comes as arms sales continue to increase.

“Sales have certainly increased over the past few years compared to the past five years,” said Vincent Vasquez, manager of an Arizona gun store.

The FBI reports having made 78,571,988 background check for arms purchases over the past two years. That’s more than in any two-year period since record keeping began in 1998.

Cyndi Starr is one of many first-time gun buyers.

“I made this decision after months of back and forth,” Starr said. “I would never want to hurt anyone, ever, but I’ve been close enough to some violent or potentially violent situations that I’ve had that split second where it’s like, ‘What’s my backup?’ “

Gun violence Prevention campaigners hope the new classification of credit card purchases will help differentiate people like Starr from those who intend to use a gun to hurt people, helping banks see and report suspicious activities.

But, of course, not everyone is on board.

Over the weekend, the NRA said it was about creating a “national registry of gun owners.”

The policy is only intended to separately classify purchases from arms and ammunition stores, not specifically what was purchased. It’s a simple label change that proponents hope will help reduce gun violence.

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Strategies for Buying a Home When Prices and Mortgage Rates Are High


In December, Alexandra Lewis and her fiancé Kevin Cawley learned that the rent for their apartment in Alexandria, Va., would go up from $1,900 to $2,300 a month in February. It was just too high, said Lewis, a social worker. The rising rent prompted her and Cawley, a DC government employee, to consider buying a house.

Although she expected mortgage rates to be around 2% – a friend had secured a mortgage around that rate at the start of the pandemic – Lewis was shocked at how much the rates had increased.

“I think the market was just going up and down and we ended up locking in a day where it was at 4.6%, unfortunately,” Lewis, 26, said.

Lewis may have been disappointed at 4.6%, but rates continued to rise. The latest survey by Freddie Mac puts the average for a 30-year fixed rate mortgage at 5.89 percent. Rates are only slightly above the historical average of 5.07%, according to the Mortgage Bankers Association (MBA).

According to National Association of Realtors (NAR). House prices remain high but have started to decline. The June Case-Schiller index showed prices were up 18% year-on-year, but were up 19.9% ​​in May. Lawrence Yun, NAR’s chief economist, said the housing market is in recession in terms of declining sales and construction.

All of this makes finding a home more difficult for first-time buyers, but not impossible. Lewis and Cawley had savings and good credit going to them. Plus, they compromised on a second-best location where their money stretched further. They also tapped into additional funds through a home ownership program.

Housing hotspots threatened by falling prices from recession

“The concept of affordable housing is one that seems like a huge challenge for potential buyers these days,” said Mark Hamrick, senior economic analyst for Bankrate.com.

Mortgage bankers and real estate agents advise clients that just because you can afford a house doesn’t mean you have to spend so much.

“I try to advise clients not to be housing poor,” said Wendy Banner, an associate broker at Long & Favor in Bethesda, Maryland. “Salary increases are not automatic. People are more reluctant to buy what they might do in the future.

Banner suggests setting a budget based on what a buyer is comfortable spending on housing each month.

“Monthly mortgage payments for a typical American home have increased by more than $400 since January. Those who are serious about buying are forced to carefully consider their budgets,” said Jonathan Lee, vice president of Zillow Home Loans.

Here are some strategies buyers can use:

  • Make a list of must-haves and must-haves. “You’ll never get 100% of what you want,” said Tania Tinsley Little, a broker with eXp Real Estate in Raleigh, North Carolina “Aim to get 65-70% of what you want.”
  • IImprove your credit ratings. A better score can reduce the cost of borrowing money. “Check your credit score before you start,” Hamrick said.

The housing market picks up in 2019

  • Meet more than one lender. “Talk to a lender first,” said Susan Sonnesyn Brooks, a DC-based agent with Real estate agents Weichert, which represented Lewis and Cawley. “Before you go to see this house, see if you are qualified.” Lewis and Cawley prequalified with a lender before looking for homes. Although they were prequalified for a $500,000 mortgage, they limited their search to properties listed up to $420,000. “We didn’t want to go all out,” Lewis said.

MBA economist Joel Kan suggests getting your documents in order, such as tax returns, tax returns, bank statements and pay stubs. “Get everything you need to complete this loan,” he said.

  • Check how long a house has been on the market. Overpriced homes tend to stay on the market longer. The longer a home stays on the market, the more likely a seller is to accept a price drop. “The days on the market have gotten a little longer,” Little said.
  • Adjust your expectations. Lewis and Cawley were looking to buy a house in Montgomery County. But homes in their price range — up to $500,000 — were either too small or needed too much work. A four-bedroom, two-bathroom home on the market for $382,000 in Hyattsville, Md., a town in Prince George’s County, was more what they were looking for, even if the location wasn’t. . “It kinda felt like my childhood home, two stories up on a hill,” Lewis said. “It pulled a chord with me.”
  • Discover home ownership programs. The lender used by Lewis and Cawley, Movement Mortgage, told them about a Maryland Mortgage Program called 3% flexible loan, which comes with a down payment assistance loan equal to 3% of the first mortgage. Their total down payment was $25,000, $15,000 cash and $10,000 from the Maryland program. Although their monthly mortgage payment of $2,616 is more than their rent would have been, “why would we continue to rent when we could buy something and build equity,” Lewis said.
  • Make a larger down payment. Larger down payments can lower your interest rate. “A lender looks at the risk,” Yun said. “A bigger down payment means less risk. You may be able to negotiate a rate a quarter of a percentage point lower.”
  • Apply for financial assistance. Ask a relative to lend you or provide you with down payment funds. Find someone to co-sign your loan. If you’re single, have a parent or grandparent co-sign the loan, Little said. You might get a better mortgage rate.
  • Pay points to lower your fare. A point is a commission paid to a lender equal to 1% of the loan amount. Sometimes that makes sense, but it depends on how much the upfront cost will lower your mortgage rate and how long you intend to live in your home, Lee said.
  • Consider an adjustable rate mortgage. An adjustable rate mortgage (ARM) can have a slightly lower rate than a 30-year fixed rate, Kan said. If you plan to sell the house before your mortgage is reset to a higher rate, this may be an option. But beware, if rates are higher when you reset your loan, it can be costly, creating a higher monthly payment. Some ARMs adjust every six months after the initial lockout rate and some don’t have an increase cap, Banner said.

Ending Anti-Trans Discrimination in Credit Reporting Practices


By Brandon J. Wolf | ORLANDO – No, your eyes don’t deceive you. LGBTQ people in America are under attack. Right-wing radicals, in their quest to dismantle democracy and install a Christian nationalist regime, are (once again) obsessed with scapegoating LGBTQ people, using our existence as a political lightning rod.

As a result, each day has become more treacherous for the community than the last. Don’t get me wrong, their tactics are nothing new. Transgender and non-binary people, as they often have been, are squarely in the crosshairs. Their existence is debated, their humanity questioned. They are told when and where to use the bathroom, when and where their names will be respected, when and where they can walk safely – when and where society will allow them to be.

And as the onslaught unfolds across the country, many of those desperate to see LGBTQ people relegated to second-class citizenship are turning to Florida, under the reckless leadership of Governor Ron DeSantis, for their clues. It must be said: DeSantis does not care. He doesn’t care about Floridians, the state’s economy, or the constitutionality of his extremist policies. And he certainly doesn’t care about the health and well-being of the populations he crushes along the way.

Ron DeSantis cares about Ron DeSantis. He is enamored with the idea of ​​being president, drunk on the potential of his power. And, therefore, is willing to do anything – and step on anyone – to score another Fox News chyron and reap a few more six-figure donations.

The governor’s attacks on LGBTQ people come from all angles. Dragging his signature Don’t Say LGBTQ Law across the finish line, DeSantis twisted his legislative minions into knots, publicly haranguing anyone who dared challenge him. He took aim at Disney, one of the world’s most recognizable brands, decimating a local government to drive the point home.

He bullied the Agency for Health Care Administration into withdrawing Medicaid funding for gender-affirming care, throwing tens of thousands of transgender Floridians into uncertainty for weeks to come. He bludgeoned the Board of Medicine into considering such heavy-handed action, potentially jeopardizing the licenses of healthcare providers to provide the best possible care to their patients.

Its Department of Education has told school districts to ignore Title IX protections for LGBTQ students, warning (falsely) that offering discrimination protection to these young people could put districts in legal jeopardy. And he used the Department of Business and Professional Regulation to target an LGBTQ-owned small business, threatening to tear them down for daring to host a Sunday drag brunch.

Governor DeSantis is so drunk on ego that he’s weaponizing any agency he can get his hands on against a population fighting to keep their heads above water. And along the way, he reignited vile anti-LGBTQ rhetoric to justify his naked cynicism. His office led to a flurry of the term “groomer” being launched across the country, with his now former publicist trafficking the trope during a desperate Twitter rant.

The strategy is simple: denigrate and dehumanize LGBTQ people to score voting points with the base and justify cruel policies aimed at erasing us. If you can reduce LGBTQ people to something less than human – an ideology, an agenda – your most ardent supporters will give up any freedom necessary for you to stop us. Program censorship. Book ban. The government dictates what medical care a person can access, what haircuts they can wear, what clothes they can wear. An end to green-lit freedom in the service of the political ambitions of the man who says he can put an end to the LGBTQ “contagion”.

If that sounds like a bossy nightmare, it is. But this isn’t just a Florida or Texas nightmare, it’s a crisis circling the nation’s trachea, threatening to choke us all. What DeSantis unleashed in Florida — the weaponization of every apparatus of government against his constituents to lock in his grip on power — is not an endgame. It’s a test.

There’s nothing he’d appreciate more than the chance to use the US Department of Education to snatch up protections for transgender students in every corner of the country. He would salivate at the chance to use the full power of the federal government to strike down his political opponents, dismantling any company that dares to fly a Pride flag in June. Right-wing extremists look to DeSantis for the roadmap to an authoritarian America not only because they want to emulate his political success; but because they want to see him on the stand.

Your eyes don’t deceive you. And yes, it is heavy and overwhelming. It is by design. The DeSantis Doctrine is a doctrine ripped from the teachings of Donald Trump and put on political steroids: create a storm so chaotic and all-consuming it seems inevitable. Crush your opponents making them feel like fighting back is hopeless. But fighting back is our only hope. Apathy is the fuel of systems of oppression. Despair is an ally of the status quo. Our best option is our only option: refuse to be erased and demand political accountability for unbridled cruelty.

Our community is no stranger to attacks like these. For centuries, our presence has been over-sexualized, demonized, and used to instil fear in those around us. We dare to imagine a world where people are celebrated exactly as they are. And for that, we have long been political targets. But that means we’re no strangers to what’s to come either.

Throughout history, with our backs to the wall, we have won by telling our stories, living our truth and demanding equality. This moment forces us to rediscover this strength. It forces us to stand firm with the trans and non-binary community, refusing to dump them in the short-sighted hope of being spared by the right-wing monster. It forces us to mobilize our people – LGBTQ and allies – to see our very humanity as a reason to wade into political struggle. It forces us to make the November elections a referendum on hatred, refusing to let it fester and consume the country.

LGBTQ people are under attack in America, a cancer barrage led by Florida Governor Ron DeSantis. Our job now is to stop its spread.


Photo courtesy of Brandon J. Wolf

Brandon J. Wolf is publicist for Equality Florida, the largest statewide LGBTQ+ equality rights organization.

Additionally, Wolf is Vice President and Co-Founder of Project Dru, an Orlando-based LGBTQ+ 🌈 advocacy organization whose mission is to spread love, promote GSAs, and send future leaders to college in honoring his best friend Drew Leinonen, one of 49 people lost in the 2016 Pulse nightclub mass shooting, of which Wolf is also a survivor.

$500 Payday Loans Online: Guaranteed Approval for Bad Credit at Gad Capital


Customers can obtain payday loans from direct lenders in the form of short-term personal loans. Depending on when this happens, the period will end on your next payment or 31 days after the loan agreement. It rarely exceeds 31 days, depending on the contracts. The borrower must make the check payable to the lender. When signing the contract, this check must be presented. The amount of the check indicates the total amount of the sanctioned pay day. The amount credited to your account is the same as the approved amount, less interest and applicable fees.

This means that the lender receives the interest on the loan amount up front, but you have to repay the principal at the end of the time. Some debtors can quickly withdraw money from their bank account via the Internet.

These loans have attractive terms for potential borrowers. There is no need for a credit check or teletrack for these cash advances. This means that the loan will be granted even if the borrower has a history of default.

You should expect to pay between 15% and 30% of the loan principal in interest on a payday loan. These cash advances are expensive compared to traditional personal loans. Conventional loans, on the other hand, may not be your best option in an emergency.

People usually look for payday loans when they have an immediate financial need. Because no credit check or paperwork is required, they are much faster than traditional personal loans. If you need a $500 payday loan right now and are looking for direct lenders that offer $500 payday loans, keep reading.

What is a $500 payday loan?

Payday loans are small, short-term loans you can get if you need money fast. When a loan is obtained, it is common for the borrower to repay it in a month or less. Ask the direct lender how your loan works.

The fact that internet lenders have a high acceptance rate for loans up to $500 is a significant advantage. Even if your credit score is as low as 500, you can still get a payday loan and the money you need right now. Payday loans offer everyone a fair opportunity to manage unexpected financial needs because they do not require faxing, can be approved quickly, and do not undertake extensive credit checks.

What should I do with my $500 online loan?

There are no restrictions on how the money can be spent for internet loans. Most people use payday loans to cover unexpected expenses such as medical bills, car repairs, utility bills, rent, and other necessities. You should only take out a loan like this if you need money for an emergency.

What is a $500 loan without credit check?

A payday loan, often called a cash advance, is a quick way to get funds from a lending institution ranging from $100 to $500. The amount you can borrow is often proportional to your monthly salary. Your credit score isn’t that important, and if you need $500 but have bad credit, lenders will review your personal information and decide within seconds, based on what they find.

Which is worse, having no credit, bad credit, or no credit? Welcome! You cannot receive a wide range of financial assets without bad credit. This question will be approached differently by different payday loan companies. Even if you have a low credit score, this won’t be a problem, as many creditors just check it quickly. All you need if you need a $500 loan right away is proof that you are making enough money each month.

Are there credit checks for a $500 loan?

Direct lenders like GadCapital generally perform light credit checks rather than in-depth checks. This means that they only consider general information about your income and other vital details. They do not perform the thorough checks required by the credit bureaus, but instead rely on other data companies. Do not worry ! These queries will not affect your credit history.

Why should I get a $500 loan with bad credit?

When people need money to meet unexpected expenses like medical bills, car repairs, and utility bills, they usually turn to payday loans. It is not uncommon to want financial assistance due to sudden expenses. This is the main reason people with bad credit can get a $500 payday loan.

What are the criteria for a $500 loan?

Most borrowers will be able to meet the exact requirements for online payday loans and be considered. To qualify for a $500 loan, you must first meet the conditions below.

  • Have a stable income
  • be 18 or older
  • be a US citizen or permanent resident
  • and have a cell phone, email address and checking account.

The standards of some credit institutions may differ slightly from those of others. Certain state laws may impose additional restrictions. Before applying, you should research the prerequisites for your specific field. The majority of them are quite simple for the average person to do.

How does a $500 loan work?

You must submit a loan application form to qualify for a $500 loan. Our network distributes your loan application to over a hundred direct lenders. This process is completed entirely with digital equipment in less than 90 seconds. The credit institution will contact you if your application is approved.

Read the terms and conditions of the loan carefully, especially the sections that deal with fees, charges, etc. If you have no further questions, you must sign the contract. Funds will be deposited into your account no later than the next business day, depending on the lender’s cut-off times.

You will be able to support yourself as soon as you receive the funds. When payment is due, the lender withdraws the funds from your account. Determine if the budget has sufficient funds to avoid late payment penalties.

What types of $500 loans can I apply for?

Traditional lenders, like banks, prefer larger loans; therefore, a loan of $500 is unlikely to be considered. They also won’t lend you money if you have bad credit. The good news is that resourceful lenders are now ready to give you a $500 loan.

Car title loans

With these loans, you can borrow a few hundred or a few thousand dollars for a few months. You could lose your car if you don’t pay. Only 15 states allow this type of financing.

Payday loans

Payday loans are the best way to get $500 without going through a credit check. They are short-term, so you should expect to pay the money back within a few weeks.

A personal loan of $500

This is a short-term loan where you repay the money in monthly installments rather than all at once. Most of the time, you will need to borrow at least $1,000 to qualify for one of these loans.

Can I qualify for a $500 payday loan despite my bad credit score?

The field of finance is subject to continuous change. Traditional lenders will primarily consider your credit score when deciding whether or not to give you a loan. Payday lenders never check a borrower’s credit history. They place more emphasis on your current income as a predictor of your ability to repay the loan, as they believe this is the most important aspect.

A borrower’s credit history is rarely reviewed throughout the loan application process. Your new application will likely be denied if you have already defaulted on a payday loan.

The good news is that it will only take a few minutes to complete the application, and once it is approved, you will receive the funds the next business day.

How can I increase my chances of getting a $500 loan?

  • 100 payday lenders will assess your application through our referral service. Fear nothing. They get called and don’t get your details until you pay.
  • Show your earnings. Most lenders won’t lend you without a stable income.
  • Prepare to spend 5 minutes filling out the loan application form and 15-20 minutes reviewing the terms and conditions.

$500 loan – how much does it cost?

Most of the overall cost of a loan is made up of principal, interest, and sometimes other fees. The APR is used to calculate interest. This varies from lender to lender and state to state. To help you understand the numbers, we’ll use an example of a $500 payday loan with a 30-day term and an average APR of 300%.

Charlotte Robel Content Manager at Gad Capital

As Content Manager for Gad Capital, Charlotta Robel wants to help you learn the specifics of financial matters and help you find the best solution for your needs, whether it’s borrowing money or to earn money in other ways, or to improve the quality of your credit score.

She holds a doctorate in medicine with a specialization in philology is one of the most renowned universities. Certified member of the New York State Business and Digital Asset Assessment Board. Charlotta holds an undergraduate education from a major European school. She is fluent in English, German, Italian and Russian. For over 10 years, Charlotta has been involved in blogging and content writing, reviewing feature or article writing, editing and many more.

Avoid credit card skimmers at the gas pump


BIRMINGHAM, Ala. (WBRC) – Filling up with gas is so common we can get complacent, but you need to be careful in order to avoid credit card fraud.

A lot of times when we’re filling up our gas tanks, we’re in a rush to get somewhere, but Clay Ingram with AAAAlabama says you need to pause and take a moment to better protect yourself.

Gas skimmers are devices that thieves attach to the card slots of gas pumps. They can be used to record and store credit card information, but there are simple things to avoid falling victim to them.

You may notice that many pumps have serial numbered safety stickers. If it’s torn, someone may have tampered with it. Avoid them as much as possible!

Ingram also says going inside to pay is the safest option, but if you can’t, be sure to use a credit card instead of a debit card. He adds that there are also some pumps that are less likely to have a skimmer.

“Usually when we see these skimmers attached to the pump, they’re usually doing them on the pumps furthest from the line of sight of the interior of the store, so furthest from the front door of the store,” said Ingram said. “So if you have a choice, also use the pump which is a bit closer to the door and might also offer a bit of protection.”

It encourages you to inspect the card scanner before swiping your card. If it looks like someone has tampered with it, use another pump and notify the gas station attendant immediately.


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Copyright 2022 WBRC. All rights reserved.

I used my VA loan to buy a property that generates passive income

  • As an Air Force veteran, I have access to VA loans, which require no down payment.
  • I used the VA loan twice to buy myself a house. When I moved, I turned my first house into a rental.
  • I hope to one day use the VA loan to purchase a multifamily property that I can live in and rent out.

I spent a lot of time researching military benefits. As a naturally thrifty person, joining the Air Force has unlocked a wide variety of tools for my financial success. This has included the Post-9/11 GI Bill, a high interest savings account, and health insurance provided by VA. But one of the biggest perks I experienced was the VA loan, which I used multiple times.

Most military people have heard of the VA loan. Federally insured, these loans will allow eligible service members to put 0% down on a home loan without having to pay mortgage insurance premiums.

And while the interest rates on these loans tend to be a bit higher than standard mortgages, a low credit score requirement and no down payment have helped make home ownership affordable for many.

You can get more than one VA loan

Perhaps the best part of the VA loan entitlement is that, unlike many service member benefits, your eligibility does not end with your service. This means veterans can benefit from the same loan options as their active duty counterparts – and the loan can be used multiple times.

Now, when I say multiple times, I don’t mean you can get one loan, pay it off, and then get another VA loan. There is a fairly common misconception that you can only hold one VA loan at a time, but the truth is that you have a specific amount of money that you can borrow against. If your first home does not exceed this amount? You can get another loan.

That doesn’t mean you can go willy-nilly and buy every property you see. Most of the time, you will need to have a good reason for buying another home.

This is largely because any home you buy with a VA loan is meant to be a primary residence. So if you already have a home, but want a second one just 50 miles away, chances are the banks will consider it a vacation property and won’t approve you for another loan.

I have used my VA loan entitlement twice so far

In my case, I first purchased property in August 2017 after accepting a job offer in Washington, DC. A few years later, I went back to school, changed careers, and decided to return home to California. Because I hadn’t used all of my rights—and because I was doing a huge move across the country—I was able to qualify for a second VA loan.

The path VA Loan Entitlement is calculated is a little tricky, and the government’s own websites aren’t particularly intuitive. But, essentially, eligible service members receive two levels of loan entitlement.

The base tier includes $36,000 of VA support. Since the VA only guarantees 25% of your loan at any given time, this essentially gives you $144,000 in purchasing power.

However, there is a second tier of entitlement available to members for the sum of $125,800 (meaning you can borrow up to four times that amount). Add those two together and you have a buying power of $647,200. (Be aware that these loan limits only apply when you are looking for a second VA loan. You have no loan limit on your first VA loan.)

My first condo cost $330,000 and my second $400,000. Since the total of those two loans was over that $647,200, I had to put down a down payment on my second property, but if you’re not using the full entitlement, you’d still only need 0% advance payment.

I applied for and received my second VA loan in June 2019. Luckily, since it had been over a year since I purchased my original property, I was able to rent it out with no problem.

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I am earning passive income on my first property

Today, I call California home again (when I’m not traveling, at least). Together, my two VA loans have been a huge boon. Not only am I able to earn additional income on my original condo, but not having mortgage insurance for my second property saves me hundreds of dollars every month.

Although I am no longer in the Air Force, I will always be grateful for the opportunities it gave me. My next goal? Selling my single-family condo and moving into a four-unit residence using – you guessed it – my VA loan.

Kiplinger Staff: Retirement: Has Equifax Botched Your Credit Score? | Economic news


QUESTION: I heard that Equifax sent bad credit ratings to lenders. How do I know if I was affected by this error?

ANSWER: Equifax, one of the top three credit reporting companies, released a statement in early August indicating that a coding error led consumers to poor credit scores. The algorithm issue took place between March 17 and April 6, 2022, with approximately 300,000 consumers being raised or lowered by 25 points.

The most pressing question on the minds of many consumers is whether they have been affected. And, unfortunately, the answer is not as clear and dry as one might think.

“There’s absolutely no way a consumer would know if their scores were higher or lower during that three-week period because of the scheduling issue,” says credit expert John Ulzheimer, author of “The Smart Consumer’s Guide to Good Credit”. You should be familiar with scoring models and know exactly how Equifax misprogrammed your credit report, he adds.

People also read…

However, there is a roundabout way of trying to figure it out. And it starts by asking yourself: have you applied for credit? Credit here means you applied for a new rewards card, mortgage, home refinance, or car loan within that three-week period.

If your answer is yes, the next thing you need to ask yourself is: was your application denied or approved at higher interest rates than you expected?

Next, check either your “Adverse Action Notice” or your “Risk-Based Pricing Notice”, which details the terms and conditions to which you have been approved. Both notices must state which report was pulled by the lender to determine your eligibility for the loan.

If your Equifax report was pulled, contact the lender and ask if your request was affected by the coding issue.

Remember, this is a programming problem, Ulzheimer says. The information in your Equifax – as well as reports from the other two major reporting companies Experian and TransUnion – has not been affected and should be accurate.

Indeed, if your “adverse action notice” or “risk-based pricing notice” indicated that your request was determined using your Experian or TransUnion report, the lender may legitimately consider you a risk.

In this case, you need to increase your credit score through healthy credit habits. This includes paying your credit card and other loans on time, as well as keeping your credit utilization ratio – the amount of available credit you use – below 30%.

Emma Patch is an editor at Kiplinger’s Personal Finance magazine. To learn more about this and similar money-related topics, visit Kiplinger.com.

Growing MGA Business in Trade Credit, Surety and Single Risk Business – A Reinsurer’s View | Point of view


I have seen comments in the media about investors preferring to put their capital in MGAs rather than insurance companies. Certainly, we are seeing an increasing number of new proposals from AGG on the single risk market which focus on medium and long-term credit operations and political risks.

Admittedly, MGAs are not new to the market and cover a range of businesses from multi-line portfolios of over $1 billion to monoline niche products of $10 million.

GAs are well established in surety markets such as Italy, Norway and South Africa. And Trade Credit MGAs have been active for many years in the UK, Australia and Canada. Reinsurers apply an additional layer of due diligence motivated by some skepticism around the MGA concept. But why is that and what does it mean for MGA’s business cases for reinsurance capacity?

Main areas to consider for a reinsurer

Trade credit and bonding AMGs showed higher earnings volatility than their group of insurance underwriters, including cases of complete portfolio collapses with loss ratios that would not normally be seen at an insurer.

An MGA is an additional link in the underwriting chain with the need for cost compensation and part of the profits. In a non-proportional reinsurance market this would not be a problem, but the majority of credit risk reinsurance programs are proportional where the cost structure of the reinsured business is one of the critical parameters.

Does a MGA have the potential to underwrite its specific credit related business at a lower loss ratio throughout the economic cycle compared to the peer insurance group to allow reinsurers the same margin despite the higher cost?

“Reinsurers are applying an extra layer of due diligence driven by some skepticism around the MGA concept”

What might make a lot of sense for an insurer from a combined ratio perspective no longer works for a reinsurer after adding the endorsement to compensate the insurer for its own costs.

Let’s look at the insurance market because no AG can issue a policy without the capacity of a licensed insurer. In trade credit, surety and single risk, the policyholders/beneficiaries are mainly large companies, banks, public entities and multilateral institutions.

For most of them, a very strong credit rating is essential when selecting the counterparty to insure with. An MGA, particularly in the single risk market, will need to have access to at least A-rated insurance paper to be considered by policyholders. However, as most insurers rated A and better already write these product lines in-house, the available pool of insurers who could qualify from a rating perspective while writing any of these lines through of an MGA is very limited.

Reinsurers will generally not view the MGA as the sole counterparty and will view the insurance company only as an exchangeable front entity. Ideally, the insurer is an existing customer and the reinsurer already has in-depth knowledge of the insurer’s underwriting culture.

The credit risk insurance business must perform well throughout an economic cycle and for this reason reinsurers generally commit commensurate capacity in these classes assuming a long-term relationship, as the Exiting the treaty after one or two years will leave them with extreme risk on average four to five years in surety and single risk, with some policies spanning 10 to 15 years.

Liberty Mutual Re supports MGA’s business in the trade credit, surety and single risk business segment subject to a high level of confidence that the insurer/MGA partnership is long-term, with the insurer retaining a portion substantial risk and having full risk monitoring supported by its own credit expertise.

MGA’s business plan should be realistic because aggressive growth takes you down the credit curve quickly.

Uwe Haug is Head of Business Development and Underwriting Strategy – Financial Risk Reinsurance at Liberty Mutual Reinsurance

How to cancel a credit card


When you have a credit card that you don’t use, canceling it might seem like a no-brainer decision. This is especially true if the card has an annual fee or if you are prone to overspending. But if you’re not careful, getting rid of a card can have unintended consequences, like a drop in your credit score.

This is because credit reporting agencies look closely at the amount of credit you have access to, and deleting one of your cards can significantly reduce that amount. Fortunately, there are ways to reduce the damage or even avoid it altogether. Here are five simple steps to canceling a credit card, the right way.

Steps to Cancel a Credit Card

1. Pay or transfer the remaining balance

It is possible to close a credit card if you still have a balance on it. You will still owe the money, but you will no longer have access to the charge on the credit card. For this reason, it’s usually best to pay the balance in full before canceling. This will ensure that the account will appear on your credit reports as “paid as agreed”.

If the balance is too high, consider transferring it. Currently, the best balance transfer cards offer up to 21 months interest-free on transferred balances. Note that this type of card usually requires good or excellent credit. You will also pay a balance transfer fee, usually between 2% and 5% of the total amount transferred.

Is it sometimes a good idea to cancel before paying your card in full? It’s possible if you’re the kind of person who would benefit from avoiding the temptation to rack up more expenses by paying off what you owe, says Kenneth Chavis IV, financial planner at Los Angeles-based wealth management firm LourdMurray. “It’s a behavioral debt management strategy,” he explains.

2. Spend or transfer rewards

Points and miles from co-branded hotel and airline credit cards will remain in your rewards program account even when you cancel the card. However, this is not the case with general rewards cards like the Chase Sapphire Preferred or American Express Gold. You will need to spend or transfer these rewards to avoid losing them.

You can usually transfer your points to the issuer’s airline or hotel partner. Keep in mind that transfer times can vary significantly. While most programs allow instant transfers, others can take up to 14 business days to transfer your rewards.

3. Contact your bank

Call your bank or contact them through their online message center and let them know you want to close your credit card. Be sure to request written confirmation of your closed account status and remaining $0 balance. This way, you will have proof in case the bank incorrectly reports the account closure to the credit bureaus.

4. Check your credit report

The bank is unlikely to immediately report your closed account. Give it four to six weeks and check your credit report to ensure that the account is marked as closed at your request and paid as agreed. Contact your credit card issuer if this is not the case and file a dispute with the credit bureaus if the bank does not correct the error. Note that correcting an error with one credit bureau may not affect your credit reports with other bureaus. For this reason, it is best to go through the dispute process with each office separately.

5. Discard the card

You can destroy a plastic credit card using scissors or a paper shredder. If you have a metal credit card, mail it back to the credit card issuer. Your bank can send you a prepaid envelope at your request. Alternatively, you can simply return the card to a local bank branch.

Does canceling a credit card hurt your credit?

According to popular credit advice, canceling a credit card is a bad idea because it can hurt your credit. Closing a card can negatively impact your credit usage, the second most important credit factor after payment history. A credit utilization rate is the percentage of available credit that you are using. You want to keep this number below 30% to avoid losing credit points.

Let’s say you have two credit cards with a credit limit of $2,000 and a total of $500 in credit card debt. Your credit utilization rate is 25%. If you close a card but your balance stays the same, the ratio will drop to 50%. In this scenario, your credit will likely suffer damage.

Fortunately, there are ways to lessen that damage, according to Beverly Harzog, author of five books on credit and personal finance. First, if you have another credit card, you can try requesting a credit limit increase to compensate for the loss of available credit.

However, it’s best to only do this if you’re in good standing on your card to avoid the opposite result: a credit card issuer may look into your case and decide to lower your credit limit instead. “I always say don’t draw attention to yourself if you can’t stand up to scrutiny,” Harzog warns. “If you’ve had a sloppy payment history, don’t try this.”

If you canceled a card because it didn’t fit your spending habits, you can also apply for another one. If you get a similar or higher credit limit, you can mitigate any reduction in your credit score. If you’re looking for a new map, check out Buy Side’s picks for the best cash back and best travel credit cards—two of the most popular categories.

Can I cancel a credit card I just applied for?

You can cancel a credit card at any time. If you’ve applied and quickly realized the card isn’t right for you, you can close the account. Keep in mind, however, that a credit card application triggers a thorough investigation of your credit file, which can cost you credit points. The request stays on your credit for two years and impacts your scores for one year whether you close the card or not.

If you open a card just to get a sign-up bonus and cancel it after you’ve earned and spent the rewards, this is a practice known as “credit card churning”. Although it’s not illegal, it can hurt your credit if you frequently unsubscribe due to all the tough requests.

Plus, lenders also notice this type of behavior and may become skeptical when you apply for more credit, says Yanely Espinal, outreach director at Next Gen Personal Finance, a nonprofit organization offering a personal finance program for teachers. colleges and high schools.

“It makes them think that maybe your financial reputation isn’t so great because you’re borrowing money from so many different people at the same time,” she notes.

Should I cancel my credit card?

How many credit cards do you keep depends on your buying habits and your willingness to play the points game. There may be valid reasons for getting rid of a credit card, but it’s a good idea to consider alternatives first.

For example, if the card does not offer enough value for your expenses, you can call the credit card issuer and request a product change. This means you’ll get a different credit card, but you’ll keep the same account and credit limit.

Issuers have different rules for product switches, but it doesn’t hurt to explore your options before deciding to close your credit card account. For example, Bank of America is quite flexible with product switching rules. Let’s say you don’t travel enough to justify paying $95 a year for the Bank of America® Premium Rewards® credit card. You may be able to upgrade to a cash back card with no annual fee like Bank of America Unlimited Cash Rewards. Chase, on the other hand, is stricter and only allows product changes within the same card family.

If you’re struggling with overspending, it may be good for your financial well-being to get rid of your credit card. Still, there are other options.

See if you can lock your card from your online account or mobile app, suggests Espinal. This stops all new charges while allowing previously authorized and recurring charges.

A card blocking allowed Espinal to reimburse the balance of one of its cards while avoiding adding more. “And then I was out for a drink with a friend of mine and went to try to use the credit card,” she says. “It was a bit awkward…I totally forgot I had it locked, but that was a good thing because if I wasn’t planning on spending with that card, it would have been a great way to help me control myself.”

Any advice, recommendations, or rankings expressed in this article are those of the WSJ’s Buy Side Editorial Team, and have not been reviewed or endorsed by our business partners.

Looking for a home loan? Find out the lowest interest rates based on your credit score


Buying your own home is one of the biggest financial decisions. You consider several aspects before borrowing the funds for the long term, such as 15 to 20 years. Loan processing involves several due diligences before the fund is finally released to the borrower.

When you decide to buy a house, the first thing that comes to mind is money. How will you organize the funds? Some people are self-financing, while others choose to borrow from financial institutions such as banks and housing finance companies.

The home loan interest rate is very important in the loan processing process. It decides your future repayments and how long you will repay the entire loan without delay or default. Almost everyone expects to borrow at a lower interest rate, but it is not possible. Several factors are useful when taking out a home loan.

Your credit score is very important as some banks offer lucrative interest rates to customers with higher credit scores. Interest rates can vary from lender to lender, but often a higher credit score works in favor of borrowers.

Read also: Why invest in international funds and how to do it

A lower rate is important because even a 0.5% interest difference can save you a lot of money when you start paying off your loan. People should check their credit scores when looking for a home loan. They need to know which lender offers the lowest interest rates to customers with credit scores of 750 or higher.

Your credit score can go up or down depending on your financial habits. Maintaining a good credit rating is important to ensure quick access to funds from financial institutions. If your credit score isn’t good enough to take out big loans like a home loan, it makes sense to follow financial discipline and improve your credit score.

You need to pay your bills on time and avoid delays and defaults on your outstanding loans. Find out the reasons for a lower score and see how you can improve to get the best deal when borrowing a home loan. Another strategy for borrowing in money-making transactions is to borrow jointly. If one person has a poor credit score and another has a high score, the bank may consider offering you the home loan you want. You can also borrow a higher amount jointly compared to individually.

Also read: Want to improve your eligibility for a personal loan? Follow these 4 tips

Some banks offer home loans based on your credit score. It helps you borrow at a lower interest rate from banks and other financial institutions. Banks offer good deals to people with higher credit scores considering the risk factor. People with higher credit ratings are often treated as low-risk accounts, with less chance of default or loan arrears. This is why a good credit score is always considered an advantage.

The table below compares home loan interest rates from selected banks and housing finance companies based on credit ratings. You can compare and make the decision based on what suits your needs. Always do your due diligence and read the terms and conditions of the loan agreement before making the final decision.

Home loan interest rates corresponding to different levels of credit rating

Note: The table consists of home loan interest rate data from banks and NBFCs which show their home loan rate linked to credit score on their website. The interest rate is indicative and in the actual situation, the rate may vary depending on various factors and the general conditions of the bank. Data as of September 06, 2022.

Compiled by Bankbazaar.com

How to get a bad contractor arrested


Hint: it’s all in the contract

MEMPHIS, Tenn. – One of the most common calls WREG problem solvers receive involves contractors who get paid but never complete the job.

A recent arrest caught our attention since law enforcement agencies often don’t hold contractors accountable for charges.

“The majority are being handled civilly,” said Lt. Kevin Johnson of the Memphis Police Department’s Economic Crimes Bureau. “A lot of times what we get is people have a solid civil case, but it doesn’t rise to the level of a criminal case.”

Johnson explained why they’re struggling to enforce a Tennessee state law making “fraud by a home improvement contractor” a criminal charge. The law has only been around for 10 years and the wording is vague. When legislators wrote “no substantial part of the contract work was performed”, they did not define “substantial”.

Bobby Ellis’ arrest in July was an exception, police said. Ellis was paid $35,000 and only worked one day, which cleared his case.

“Fortunately, most of the cases we’ve pursued have been easier to the extent that no work has been done,” Johnson said.

But officials said they have prosecuted only a handful of contractors in the past three years. They hope that could change with public awareness of how the law works.

“Knowing that there is a criminal sanction would certainly help citizens in that fewer people would try to take advantage of people like this,” Johnson said.

According to the police, the key to protecting themselves and helping them file charges if necessary lies in the wording of the contract.

Here’s what they said consumers need to know to protect themselves:

  • Contracts must have detailed information on specific work expectations, including a timeline. Prosecutors could use it in court to prove that a “substantial” amount of the planned work was not done.
  • Contracts should also include a contractor’s address. The law requires the submission of a written request for reimbursement.
  • Wait 90 days call the authorities since the contractor has this time to respond.

If you make these changes, you are giving law enforcement their best chance to help you and make requests for an arrest if necessary.

“If they think they’ve been victimized, they should contact the economic crimes office,” Johnson said.

The MPD Economic Crimes Bureau can be reached at 901-636-3350.

You also have other options, such as filing a complaint with your state’s contractors board or filing a lawsuit.

Police say the prosecution is working, as evidenced by the fact that they have no repeat offenders.

I have a problem? Contact WREG Problem Solver Stacy Jacobson at 901-543-2334 or [email protected]

Police are looking for a vehicle burglar in Clarksville who used a stolen credit card in Goodlettsville


CLARKSVILLE, TN (NOW CLARKSVILLE) – The search is underway for the person(s) who broke into multiple vehicles in Clarksville in the past month. Two of the vehicle break-ins are being investigated by Clarksville police detectives.

According to a Clarksville Police Department press release, one or more unknown persons broke into several vehicles and stole personal items around 5:15 a.m. on August 22. The burglaries were reported to Acme Athletics at 2231 Madison St. and Orange Theory. Fitness at 1011 Winn Way.

About an hour after the initial report, one of the victim’s credit cards was used at a Goodlettsville Kroger store to purchase a $500 gift card, detectives said.

Investigators obtained video footage from a security camera showing a man making the transaction at an automated cashier. In the video, you can see the tattoos the suspect has on both of his forearms. The tattoo on his right forearm appears to read “Tandrina”.

The man was last seen driving a royal blue four-door car in the parking lot. The Clarksville Police Department is asking for the public’s assistance in identifying this suspect.

Anyone with additional information or video footage is encouraged to contact Detective Alquzweeni at (931) 648-0656, ext. 5366. To remain anonymous and eligible for a cash reward, call the Clarksville Montgomery County Crime Stoppers tip line at (931)-645-8477, or go online and submit a tip at P3tips.com/591.

How to manage credit cards in times of inflation | Credit card


Faced with 40-year highs in inflation, American consumers are turning to credit cards at an accelerating rate.

According to the credit bureau Equifax, consumers opened 28.4% more credit cards in the first quarter of 2022 compared to the same period a year earlier. What’s more, the Federal Reserve Bank of New York found that credit card balances increased by 13% between the second quarter of 2021 and the same period in 2022, the largest year-over-year increase in more than 20 years.

If you’ve noticed that your expenses have increased with rising prices and you’re worried about getting into credit card debt, here’s what you need to know. There’s good news, too: if you use your credit card responsibly, the right card can help mitigate the impact of inflation.

How Credit Card Debt Can Exacerbate Inflation Problems

Credit cards can provide valuable benefits to their users, and if you’re in financial difficulty, they can help support you until you’re back on your feet.

But it’s easy for things to get out of control with credit card debt, especially if you’re already struggling with higher costs across the board. “The increased use of credit cards probably means that people are feeling the pinch of higher prices and are using credit cards as a way to make ends meet,” says Thomas Tunstall, senior research director at the University of Texas at the San Antonio Institute of Economic Studies. Development.

And if you’re not careful, it can make your situation worse. Here are some of the ways credit card debt can harm your financial health:

  • High interest rates. Credit cards carry relatively high interest rates, with an average of 16.65%, according to the Federal Reserve. In addition, credit card interest rates are usually variable, which poses an additional danger. “Rising costs are usually associated with higher interest rates as the Fed raises its benchmark,” Tunstall says. “This means that interest rates for credit card debt are likely to rise, increasing the cost of any unpaid debt.”
  • Minimum monthly payments. Because credit cards have minimum monthly payments with no structured repayment plan, your balance can swell quickly if you pay the lowest amount required each month.
  • No more grace period. Credit cards generally offer a grace period between your statement date and the due date each month. During this time, you can pay off your balance in full and avoid interest charges. However, if you carry a balance from one month to the next, you lose your grace period, which means that interest begins to accrue on the date of the transaction.
  • Impact on your credit score. As your credit card balance increases, your credit utilization rate, which is one of the most influential factors in determining your FICO credit score. Higher utilization rates correlate with lower credit scores.

How to Leverage Your Credit Cards to Fight Inflation

If you don’t rely heavily on credit cards to fight inflation, you may be able to use your cards to fight higher prices instead.

  • Tap your cashback. Many credit cards offer cash back on your purchases, which you can use to help pay off your balance. In fact, most cash back credit cards allow you to request statement credits directly to your account.
  • Bonus rewards can help. Some credit cards offer higher rewards rates on certain purchases. Shop around for rewards credit cards that offer accelerated rewards rates on everyday spending categories, such as groceries, gas, streaming subscriptions, or restaurants. Just make sure you don’t spend money you can’t afford to pay back just to earn rewards – the card’s interest rate will always exceed the rewards rate.
  • Open a new card with a low introductory rate. If you have credit card debt or need to make a large purchase soon, you might consider a card that offers an introductory annual percentage rate of 0%. Depending on the card, you may be able to get 0% APR on purchases, balance transfers, or both, with promotional periods ranging from 12 to 21 months. While these cards won’t reduce the burden of your debt, they can make it easier for you by paying it off without interest.

Jay Zigmont, Certified Financial Planner and Founder of Childfree Wealth, stresses the importance of understanding the terms of any 0% APR card, including the transfer fee it charges, which is typically 3% to 5% of the balance that you transfer. . “Only use a 0% card if you’re 100% sure you can pay it off within the time limit,” he says. “Don’t play credit card roulette with 0% APR cards because you’ll get caught.”

How to avoid taking on too much credit card debt

If your budget was already tight before the recent price spike, your options may be limited. “If you were living paycheck to paycheck and inflation hits, you either have to make tough choices or put it on a credit card,” Zigmont says.

But many consumers may have access to different ways to cut costs and limit their reliance on credit cards to get by. Potential approaches include:

  • Review your budget and reduce discretionary spending, such as dining out, entertainment, and other unnecessary expenses.
  • Cancellation of unused subscriptions.
  • Reduce services, such as meal and grocery delivery apps, that charge extra for something you can do yourself.
  • Shop around for auto insurance to make sure you get the lowest rate.
  • Avoid using credit cards for every purchase to minimize debt-related expenses.
  • Make multiple credit card payments each month to keep your balances and therefore your usage rate low.
  • Looking for ways to reduce your expenses through coupons, deals, cash back apps and more.

Steps to Manage Credit Card Debt

If you’ve ever racked up credit card debt due to rising costs, or had credit card balances before inflation skyrocketed, there are steps you can take to improve your situation. debt:

  • Stop using your credit card. If you’re trying to pay off credit card debt, using your cards for new purchases may feel like you’re barely making any progress. Consider switching to a debit card or cash for a while to focus on eliminating your debt.
  • Decrease spending. If possible, reduce some of your discretionary spending so you can afford to spend more on your monthly payments.
  • Search in consolidation. Consolidating your debt with a balance transfer credit card, personal loan, or another option might be worth it if you have good credit and can take advantage of lower interest rates. Carefully study each possibility of debt consolidation to determine if it’s right for you.
  • Ask about credit counseling. If your credit is not in good condition and paying off your debts is unaffordable, a credit counselor may be able to help you through a debt management plan. For a modest fee, these plans allow you to pay off your debt over three to five years, often with lower payments and interest rates.
  • Consider other approaches. If your situation is serious and you are already in arrears, you may consider debt settlement or even bankruptcy last resort. Note, however, that these options can significantly damage your credit score, so it is essential that you carefully consider all of your options and consult with a credit counselor or bankruptcy attorney before proceeding.

Although persistently high inflation degrades your purchasing power, the right credit card strategy can make the difference. It is essential that you take the time to research and carefully evaluate each approach to determine which is best for you, your current situation and your financial goals.

Cart assistants in malls pay a ‘fee’ to be allowed to collect tips from shoppers


‘Car keepers’ at Brackenfell Centre, Cape Town, say they pay R30 a day on tips from shoppers to a company called Customer Assistants. Photos: Tariro Washinyira

  • People who watch cars and help customers in malls often pay a significant portion of the tips they receive to an “agency.”
  • Daily charges can be as high as R50 per day and any shortfall must be made up the following day.
  • We asked Jon McGowan, sole proprietor of one such company, to explain how the business model works. In response, we received threats of legal action.

In almost every mall and mall, people help customers push carts and pack groceries in the trunk of their car, help customers park, and ensure their vehicles are safe while shopping. they do their shopping. They survive on tips from buyers. In some malls, these “customer assistants” have separate clothes, which they usually have to buy from the company watching them.

The Private Security Industry Regulatory Authority (PSIRA) says only registered security guards can guard cars. The “car guards” have therefore been renamed “customer truck assistants”. For convenience, we will refer to “customer assistants” as car guards.

Although the business has been around for decades, most shoppers don’t know that in many cases car sitters are paying for the “privilege” of being allowed to collect tips. And if the tips they receive that day fall below the daily “rent” – around R30-50 for a day shift, R15-25 for a night shift – they have to pay the shortfall on the next day’s income. And in many cases, if they take a day off, they still have to pay the fees. We’ve spoken to guards who say they work from 7 a.m. to 7 p.m.

GroundUp has been told that to secure a place in some malls, a ‘purse’ of between R1,500 and R4,000 must be prepaid to a business. The “car guards” we spoke to told us that they are not registered with the Unemployment Insurance Fund and that they have never seen a work contract. They have no job security and receive no social assistance of any kind.

A car-sitter management company works as a customer assistant, assigning places and collecting rent from the men. (We found no women in this work.) The sole proprietor is Jon Derek McGowan.

McGowan’s company is the ‘car guard’ agency for a number of shopping centers and malls in the Western Cape, including Brackenfell, Parow and previously Zevenwacht (Blackheath).

When the Covid pandemic hit, McGowan sent letters in April 2020 to ‘car guards’, saying they were indeed ‘key staff and personnel’, and an ‘essential service’ and should therefore be permitted to continue working during the level 4 lockdown.

“You are only allowed to work on the site if you have paid your daily R30 deposit,” a guard at the Parow shopping center told us.

“I have to eat little and make sure that at the end of the day I have the daily deposit of R30. We stay up all day in the cold, rain and even if we are tired, we are expected to smile, wave and be friendly with customers in order to get something. If you don’t get a tip that day, you tell the supervisor, then the next day after work, you pay double,” he said.

In 2021, a refugee organization, Africa Revival (ARF), took McGowan to the Commission for Conciliation, Mediation and Arbitration (CCMA) on behalf of 75 “car guards”, almost all Burundian refugees. They argued that they were exploited and should be treated as employees. Thirteen of them had worked for more than five years, and there were individuals who had worked for eight and ten years, according to CCMA documents.

The CCMA case was withdrawn. It was apparently because the guards had no paper proof that they had paid McGowan.

ARF Reverend Ngendakumana said they represented 25 guards at Brackenfell Mall, who said they paid McGowan’s company R30 a day, and 50 guards at Zevenwacht Mall. When fees were increased for Zevenwacht, a number of them protested. For this they were fired.

Burundian car attendants estimated that they earned R3,000 gross per month, out of which they had to pay daily costs. This is consistent with academic research on this subject.

Research in Durban that profiled ten guards at a free shopping center found they earned an average of R108 a day, on which they paid the guard R35, leaving them with R73.

It’s unclear what the “car guards” get in return for these daily “bay fees”. Our efforts to obtain explanations from the agencies that manage them as well as from the management of the shopping centers were in vain. But in a 2014 article in Next city an official from one of the agencies reportedly said his company ensures that car guards are “easily identifiable, well-prepared, well-managed and accountable”.

David Esau, Provincial Chief Inspector for the Western Cape Department of Labour, said a survey is being carried out at all sites to determine whether ‘car guards’ are considered employees or volunteers, and will they are employees, what type of contract did they enter into.

Business responses

“Car guards” at Brackenfell Shopping Center wear vests and jackets with the CS logo. They say they pay 150 rand for the vest and 250 rand for the jacket. One guard, who couldn’t afford the jacket, was working in shirt sleeves with just the vest.

In email correspondence, McGowan said he ran an “honest, respectful and reputable business.” He said: “The business model has been around for over 25 years. Everyone seems to know and understand how the basic floor plan works, except those who wish to cause malice, slander and/or trouble to others who not only enjoy working in a company established as customer assistants, but oppose those who attempt to undermine those who run an honest, respectful and trustworthy business”.

He said his staff were happy and treated well. He also threatened to sue GroundUp for defamation.

He did not answer our questions asking for clarification on the business model.

François van der Merwe, director of operations at the Parow Center, said he could not comment because he did not know what the arrangement was between McGowan and the guards. “Mr. McGowan (Customer Assist) is doing a service for mall customers,” he said.

Venessa Roux, Acting Property Manager at Brackenfell Center, said: “Unfortunately, we cannot share any information with you as it would constitute a breach of our agreement with the relevant service provider…Notwithstanding the above, we believe these charges are untrue and we reserve all of our legal rights and remedies if you refer to us or the name of Brackenfell Centre.

Jacques Erasmus, Managing Director of Excellerate Real Estate Services (Pty) Ltd, said: “McGowan was the former owner of Customer Trolley Assistants and no longer holds that position.

He explained the current situation to Zevenwacht as follows: “Customer trolley assistants are casual workers who have freely chosen to work in the mall knowing that tipping is at the discretion of the customer.

“As a service provider, Nogada [the current company] has to pay the mall a rental on a monthly basis as a tenant to provide services in the parking areas and Nogada simply provides the customer cart assistants with the opportunity to support their families,” Erasmus said.

Brackenfell Shopping Center customer assistant car guards share an expired box of food left for them by a regular customer.

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Don’t trust credit karma? Here are 3 other ways to get your credit score


Image source: Getty Images

Want to see your credit score for free?

Key points

  • With over 110 million members, Credit Karma is an online credit service that provides users with their credit score for free.
  • Recently, the FTC ordered the company to pay $3 million for misleading consumers with credit card offers.
  • There are other ways to get your credit score for free, including Experian, Credit Sesame, and many credit card companies.

Do you use Credit Karma to get your free credit score? Over 110 million members do. Credit Karma is an online credit service that provides real credit scores from two of the major consumer credit bureaus. What’s the catch? Credit Karma lets you monitor your credit information for free, but receives compensation from third-party advertisers and when customers are approved for loans or credit cards through their site.

Unfortunately, the Federal Trade Commission (FTC) has just ordered the company to pay $3 million to its users. The FTC said Credit Karma falsely claimed consumers were “pre-approved” and had a “90% chance of approval” to get them to apply for a credit card. According to the FTC, nearly a third of people who applied for these offers were ultimately turned down and this misrepresentation impacted their credit scores. Credit Karma said it disagreed with the FTC but was managing to avoid disruption. Although Credit Karma, which is owned by Intuit, is one of the most popular free credit score sites, here are three other ways to get your score for free.

Credit Score vs Credit Report

Your credit score is one of the most important financial numbers in your life. Financial institutions use it to determine if you qualify for a loan or a credit card, as well as your interest rate. Your score can also determine how much you pay for your insurance premiums, and many employers and landlords pull your credit as part of the screening process.

Your credit report, on the other hand, lists your bill payment history, loans, current debt, and other financial information. It shows where you worked, lived, and whether you were sued, arrested, or declared bankrupt.

Federal law gives you the right to get a free copy of your credit report every 12 months. Until December 2022, everyone in the United States can get a free credit report each week from all three national credit bureaus (Equifax, Experian, and TransUnion) at AnnualCreditReport.com. It is important to note that your credit report and your credit score are two different things.

Free credit reports provided by national credit reporting agencies do not include credit scores. Although you are entitled to a free credit report, you are not entitled to a free credit score. To get your score, you can buy it from one of the three major credit reporting agencies or other third-party companies that use one of the credit bureaus. Beware of programs offering “free sheet music” if you sign up. They may offer a free trial period, but they’re usually not really free. Credit Karma was one of the first sites to offer a free credit score. Here are other sites where you can also get a free score.


Experian is one of the three major credit bureaus. Experian allows you to get your FICO score for free. Checking your credit score is considered an informal request and will not reduce your credit score. If you want your VantageScore, a credit score developed by the three national credit bureaus, you’ll have to pay $7.95.

Sesame Credit

Credit Sesame is a credit and loan company, similar to Credit Karma. You can get your free credit score from TransUnion with a free Credit Sesame account. You can upgrade to a premium Credit Sesame plan to get credit report and credit score information from all three bureaus. Like Credit Karma, Credit Sesame collects a small commission from financial institutions, but only after securing a loan or credit card.

Your credit card company

Your credit card company may provide a free score. The following card issuers do:

In some cases, you don’t need to be a customer to register. You can sign up and receive your weekly Capital One TransUnion credit score reports even if you don’t have a Capital One card. Chase also gives you a free credit score with Chase Credit Journey. It’s free for everyone and you don’t need to have a Chase account. Chase Credit Journey uses Experian’s VantageScore 3.0®. Contact your credit card companies to see if they offer a free credit score.

With so much at stake, it’s important to maintain a good credit rating. Frequently checking your credit score will help you better understand your current financial situation. It can also help you detect any inaccurate information. These three ways to get your score are worth using to monitor your credit to make sure it’s healthy!

Alert: The highest cash back card we’ve seen now has 0% introductory APR until almost 2024

If you use the wrong credit or debit card, it could cost you dearly. Our expert loves this top pick, which features an introductory APR of 0% until nearly 2024, an insane payout rate of up to 5%, and all with no annual fee.

In fact, this map is so good that our expert even uses it personally. Click here to read our full review for free and apply in just 2 minutes.

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Swipe your credit card wisely, keep these 5 tips in mind


Tips for using a credit card properly

India has seen a boom in credit card spending, especially after the outbreak of the Covid-19 pandemic.

According to data from the Reserve Bank of India, in May, total credit card spending in the country hit a record high of 1.14 trillion rupees. Be it reward points, rebates, or credit card cash back, people prefer online transactions these days.

Credit cards also allow cardholders to spend money without worrying about their bank balance.

However, being careless with your credit card spending can also have a negative impact on your personal finances.

Practices such as delaying credit card bill payment will not only result in penalties, but will also impact your credit score. Therefore, it would be better to remember some things before swiping the card.

Here are some tips to help you make better use of your credit card:

Check statements

Swiping the credit card is easy, as is checking statements. But, many still tend to avoid checking their dues and credit statements every month.

Adopting this habit can help you keep track of your expenses. This will allow you to spot errors and correct them before they have a negative impact on your credit score.

Punctual refunds

Paying your credit card bills on time should be your top priority. Late bill payments can result in penalties and increase the interest rate on your unpaid bill. Avoid this by setting up reminders for bill payments.

Don’t slip it so often.

Credit cards have some advantages, but swiping them too often can leave a bad impression on your lender.

Relying on your credit card for small expenses indicates that you are heavily dependent on credit. This can affect your creditworthiness.

Lenders are always monitoring your credit card transactions and may refuse to approve new loans if you have a huge outstanding credit card.

Monitor Credit Utilization Ratio (CUR)

CUR is the ratio of the credit you have used to the total credit given to you by the lender and is usually expressed as a percentage.

It’s important to maintain a healthy credit score because a high CUR can lead your lender to assume that you’re mismanaging your finances and highly dependent on credit.

To avoid this, pay off your credit card balances on time or upgrade to a higher credit limit with the bank.

Spend within the limit

Spend only when you are sure to repay the amount on time. Overspending on unnecessary purchases can rack up a huge credit card bill that you may struggle to pay later.

It’s best to keep spending under the limit, which will also reflect in your credit report and prove beneficial when looking for loans.

Types of Credit Cards – Forbes Advisor


Editorial Note: We earn a commission on partner links on Forbes Advisor. Commissions do not affect the opinions or ratings of our editors.

Different types of credit cards meet the different needs of cardholders. The right card will help you achieve your financial goals responsibly while providing the best possible value.

Many credit cards are best suited for a specific purpose, such as earning rewards, building credit, financing large purchases, helping businesses finance expenses while earning rewards, or financing past credit card debt through credit cards. Incentive balance transfer offers. Check out our guide below on the many types of credit cards to learn more about which ones might be right for you.

What are the different types of credit cards?

Credit cards with rewards

When cardholders use a rewards credit card to make purchases, they can earn rewards including cash back, points, or miles. Welcome bonuses offer new cardholders the chance to earn a reward for spending a specified amount on a card within a certain period of time.

For people who use credit cards frequently or for large purchases, rewards cards can be especially profitable. Travel Cards offer those who travel often (or frequently use specific airlines or hotels) extra miles and points that can be applied to free tickets or rooms, upgrades and status changes, as well as lounge access and certain travel protections.

For branded rewards cards, the same concept applies: frequent shoppers at certain retailers will often see the greatest benefit in earning high rewards rates or deep discounts when using the card online with a co-branded retailer. or to finance in-store purchases. .

Reward cards also do a good job of incentivizing cardholders. But if you’re trying to limit your credit card use, either because you might run into a large balance or because you want to limit your spending, a rewards card may not be right for you.

Premium Rewards Cards

Premium rewards cards typically charge a hefty annual fee in exchange for high reward earning potential and even more benefits. These cards are ideal for those who are good at handling credit cards. Typically, premium rewards cards require excellent credit for application approval.

Since interest rates on premium rewards cards are often high, they are best suited to cardholders who pay balances in full each month. If you often maintain a card balance, the fees and interest you’ll pay may cost more than the value of the rewards you could earn.

Balance Transfer Cards

Balance transfer offers allow cardholders to fund existing credit card debt, often for little or no interest during an introductory period. After the introductory period, a standard or regular APR applies. These “intro APR periods” can vary in length from six to 20 months or more.

Cards with balance transfer offers may also offer rewards or other benefits. If you’re trying to manage existing credit card debt, a balance transfer card can be a financially beneficial option even long after you complete the balance transfer.

To qualify for balance transfer offers and cards with 0% promotional interest or a low ongoing rate, you’ll likely need good credit. These types of cards are probably more available to those who have existing credit card debt but whose credit remains intact.

You’ll typically incur a 3-5% fee on balance transfers, so do the math to make sure a transfer will actually save you money.

0% Introductory Buy APR Cards

Cards with a 0% introductory APR allow cardholders to finance large purchases as long as you have a plan in place to pay it off before the zero interest period ends. After the end of an interest-free period, a regular APR will apply. The best introductory APR cards offer interest-free periods of a year or more to pay off purchases.

It is important to keep in mind that when using an introductory 0% APR card, you need to monitor your credit utilization rate. Ideally, your credit usage should never exceed 30% of the overall credit available on all revolving accounts.

Student cards

College students, who traditionally have limited credit histories and incomes, can use student cards to help establish and grow their credit. Rewards and lines of credit on student cards tend to be modest compared to non-student cards. However, they often offer lower rates and fees than subprime cards, don’t require a deposit, and offer additional benefits when used instead of paying with cash or debit card.

Credit cards can help students manage their cash flow and learn sound financial management. Students who use their cards responsibly can graduate with a good credit history and good credit score, important factors when applying for a car or home loan.

Secured credit cards

Secured credit cards can open doors for people with no or poor credit history and can help establish or restore credit. The best secure cards also offer (somewhat limited) rewards and perks. A secured card will require a security deposit which the card issuer will use to secure or guarantee the account with. If approved for a secured card, you will need to deposit an amount equal to the desired line of credit.

If a cardholder maintains a credit utilization rate of 30% or less of available credit and continues to pay bills on time, a secured card will help build credit and establish a good credit history. A cardholder will generally receive a security deposit if the account closes in good standing or is upgraded to an unsecured card with the same issuer.

Retail credit cards

Some retailers offer co-branded store credit cards. These can be open-loop cards, meaning cardholders can use them anywhere, or closed-loop cards, meaning they will only work for purchases made from the retailer .

With the best store cards, you can access special rewards, discounts and promotions. With the worst store cards, interest rates can be astronomical and fees lurk like brambles in the tall grass. As with any financial product, make sure you understand all the fine print before applying.

Charging cards

Charge cards differ from regular credit cards in that they require cardholders to pay off a statement balance in full each month. While being required to pay off your entire balance each month might not sound appealing, it’s something that should ideally be done with any credit card and it’s a useful tool for managing debt. silver. You get the convenience of a card without the risk of your debt piling up.

Business credit cards

A designated business credit card is one way to keep business and personal finances separate. Like personal cards, the best business credit cards can offer great rewards and additional perks.

Small business cards work much like consumer credit cards. Small business owners will typically need to provide personal guarantees to qualify for a business credit card; A business owner’s personal credit rating and history can also determine which small business card is best for them.

Large corporations, government entities, and non-profit organizations may be eligible for certain corporate cards. Corporate cards provide a line of credit to an organization, not the business owner. Corporate cards depend on and affect business credit and therefore may not be available to small businesses, sole proprietors or independent contractors.

What type of credit card should I get?

Choose a credit card based on your credit score, spending habits and financial priorities. Do you want rewards? Additional benefits? An introductory period in April? Do you need a balance transfer?

Whatever type of card you have in mind, make sure you meet each card’s credit requirements and that its features suit your lifestyle and needs. There are hundreds of credit card options on the market and with the help of resources, including those from Forbes Advisor, you can choose the right one for your financial situation.

How many types of credit cards should I have?

It can be beneficial to use multiple types of credit cards as long as you manage them responsibly. Make sure you are prepared to take responsibility for each credit account and the responsibility associated with managing multiple accounts. There is no simple answer as to the ideal number of cards you should carry, as financial wants and needs vary widely from person to person.

Find the best credit cards for 2022

No credit card is the best option for every family, every purchase or every budget. We have selected the best credit cards so as to be the most useful for the greatest number of readers.


Many types and classifications of credit cards exist. Some cards earn rewards in the form of miles, points, or cash back and offer other benefits, while other cards can help you fund debt from another credit card with a lower APR. Other cards help consumers build credit and still others are used to finance major purchases. Small businesses and corporations use business credit cards to earn rewards and fund expenses. Some cards can serve multiple purposes.

Choose a card with the benefits that best meet your needs based on who you are and why you need a credit card. It is also perfectly acceptable not to have or use a credit card.

If you want a card, be sure to research the different card offers and fully understand the terms before applying so you are prepared to use the card responsibly if you qualify.

SkorLife gives control over credit data back to Indonesian consumers – TechCrunch


Indonesian credit bureaus currently have about 92 million credit files, but the founders of SkorLife say many people struggle to access their own data. That’s why they created the app, which not only lets people see their credit history for free, but also gives personalized advice on how to improve the data. The Jakarta-based startup announced today that it has raised $2.2 million in pre-seed funding.

AC Ventures participated in the round, which also included Saison Capital and angel investors like all the founders of OneCard; Advance.ai’s Jefferson Chan; Will Arifin of KoinWorks of KoinWorks; Lummo’s Krishnan Menon; Arip Tirta of Evermos of Evermos; Harshet Lunani from Qoala; Willy Arifin of Init-6; Lummo’s Krishnan Menon; Arip Tirta of Evermos; Harshet Lunani from Qoala; Achmad Zaky of Init-6; and executives from Northstar Group, Stripe, Google, Boston Consulting Group, Gojek and CreditKarma.

SkorLife claims that the private alpha version of its app has been downloaded over 3,000 times and is growing organically by 50-60 new users per day. This exceeds its internal target of 7x and the app will soon be available for public download. The company’s new funding will be used for product development, new hires and marketing. SkorLife currently has 10 employees and plans to increase the headcount to 40.

CEO Ongki Kurniawan was previously Country Director of Stripe Indonesia and has also held senior roles at Grab, telcoXL Axiata and Line, while COO Karan Khetan is a serial entrepreneur whose latest startups include 5x and BookMyShow Southeast Asia. East. The two met in 2018 when Grab set up a partnership with BookMyShow to offer ticketing services through Grab’s super app.

Ongki Kurniawan and Karan Khetan, founders of SkorLife

Kurniawan tells TechCrunch that the two spent a lot of time exploring different ideas. The first was to digitize the “pawnbroker”/secured lending industry, but the unit economics did not work.

“However, we have found that many Indonesians resort to pawning their property because they think they will be rejected if they go to banks,” he said, adding that seven out of 10 loan applicants are actually rejected. “This was validated after speaking with a number of industry experts. We learned that the borrowing pool of Indonesian consumers is small.

During their research, Kurniawan and Khetan also found that many Indonesians do not have access to their credit scores and other data that would help them see how banks determine their creditworthiness, meaning they lose the opportunity to access affordable loans.

The founders of SkorLife say creditworthiness is underused in Indonesia, where most financial institutions assess a person’s ability to obtain lines of credit based on their “financial creditworthiness”.

“The thing to remember is that not everyone with high income will pay their debt and everyone with low income will not pay their debt,” Kurniawan said.

Kurniawan said most Indonesians don’t know they can access their own credit history and credit ratings, and believe that only financial institutions and banks have access to this information.

If they figure out how to access it, they have two options. The first is the free route, where they request data from the OJK (Indonesian Financial Services Authority). But the problem with this is that they either have to go to an OJK office or wait days for an appointment online. The second paid route involves customers visiting three accredited credit bureaus in Indonesia to obtain their credit reports. But these reports cost money, and Kurniawan says they are several pages long “and are not designed to be digested by consumers as they are intended for use by analysts at financial institutions.”

SkorLife solves these problems by giving people free access to credit scores they would otherwise have to jump through hoops to get. Its main product is a credit-building app that allows people to instantly view and monitor their credit scores, credit reports, and other credit bureau data, for free. It also helps users dispute inaccurate information on their credit reports. If someone doesn’t have a credit history yet, the app will help them start building scores.

Through the app, customers can view their BI Check Score, or nationally recognized credit information that is used by almost all financial institutions to make credit decisions, as well as their credit score, which is generated by the credit bureaus to determine the possibility of someone defaulting on a loan within the next 12 months.

They also see what factors go into their credit score, including their payment history, credit usage, balance against their secured credit accounts versus unsecured credit accounts, the age of each of their credit accounts, identity monitoring to see if a financial institution is doing a hard check on their data, the total number of credit accounts they have, active and inactive, and outstanding balances.

This data is then used to create personalized AI-powered insights for each customer that they can use to improve their credit scores. The app also offers educational content and features that make it easy for customers to dispute inaccurate data.

Some examples of information include payment history and the ability for customers to check billing dates and set reminders, credit age (or encouraging customers not to close a long-open card ) and the use. SkorLife recommends that customers keep credit card limit usage below 30% to improve their score.

In a statement, AC Ventures Founder and Managing Partner Adrian Li said, “The opportunity in Indonesia is huge. Even though the space is relatively untapped, the size of the consumer credit market is already north of US$185 billion. That said, it has always been a challenge here because lenders have never been able to draw holistic conclusions about borrowers based on limited and fragmented information. But with these treasures of data just waiting to be unlocked and put to meaningful use in a consumer-facing app, we’re excited about SkorLife’s vision and mission to put people back in control of their financial future.

How Student Loan Forgiveness Could Impact Your Credit Score


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Student debt can make it harder to start a business Where buy a house – and one of the reasons for this is that lenders take into account your existing financial obligations.

Now that President Joe Biden has announced plans to forgive up to $20,000 for millions of student borrowers, many people will end up with a better track record and possibly an improved credit score.

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Biden said in late August that most federal student loan borrowers would be eligible for some remission: up to $10,000 if they didn’t receive a Pell grant, which is a type of aid available to undergraduates. low-income cycle, and up to $20,000 if they did. Meanwhile, other recent changes coming for student borrowers, including a second chance for those who haven’t repaid their loans, could leave them in even better financial shape.

Learn more about personal finance:
What Biden’s student loan forgiveness means for your taxes
Are You Earning Too Much For Student Loan Forgiveness?
Applications for student loan forgiveness could open within weeks

Here’s what all of this could mean for your credit.

Don’t expect a “huge” effect on your credit score

Student loan forgiveness will likely have a modest impact on your credit score, said Ted Rossman, senior industry analyst at CreditCards.com.

“I don’t think it will be huge,” Rossman said.

This is because student loans are considered “installment loans”, meaning a loan that you repay over a period of time with regular payments. These don’t weigh too heavily in your credit utilization rate, which is how much of the credit you have you use, he explained. Your usage rate can represent up to 30% of your score.

However, any score increase may help you secure more favorable terms with other lenders.

President Biden announces student debt relief plan

Less debt can help you qualify to borrow more

Owing less on your student loans will improve your “debt-to-income ratio,” which is the portion of your monthly income used to pay off your existing debts.

Lenders take this ratio into account when deciding how much you can afford to borrow. Some use what is called the 28/36 rule, which specifies that no more than 28% of your gross monthly income is spent on housing costs and no more than 36% in total on debts. (A few mortgage lenders have even higher limits.)

Forgiveness that reduces or even eliminates your monthly student loan payments could lower that ratio, “potentially helping you qualify for a mortgage, car loan, or larger credit card limit,” says Rossman.

Credit report changes can take months after application

Currently, the US Department of Education saying the loan cancellation application will be available in early October, and borrowers could see relief within six weeks.

Borrowers can then expect to see their debt reduced or cleared on their credit reports within about three months, Rossman said.

Owing less will help you make further progress in paying off your credit card debt, which will increase your savings and investments.

Ted Rossman

Senior Industry Analyst at CreditCards.com

He recommends that you regularly check your report for free on AnnualCreditReport.com to ensure that the three credit rating companies – Experian, Equifax and TransUnion – are showing your correct balance. You can check your credit report every week for free until the end of 2022.

Be sure to keep a record of your reduced debt with your student loan officer in case you need it as proof.

Borrowers in default have the possibility of erasing their file

The Ministry of Education has also recently announced that it would help some 7 million student borrowers out of default.

Once the so-called “Fresh Start” program launches, borrowers will begin by choosing a repayment plan at MyEdDebt.Ed.Gov or by calling the Department of Education’s Default Resolution Group at 800-621-3115, said higher education expert Mark Kantrowitz.

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Your loans must then be transferred from the servicer who handles federal student loans in default, Maximus, to a new servicer. Once you have a new repairer and are signed up for a payment plan, the default should be automatically wiped from your record, Kantrowitz said.

The opportunity is temporary. Borrowers will have a one-year window to switch to a new repayment plan, starting when the Covid-19 suspension of payments ends. This is currently set to happen on December 31.

New payment plans could also help borrowers’ credit

Along with President Joe Biden’s announcement last week about canceling student loans, he said the Department of Education is preparing to offer borrowers with undergraduate loans a new income-driven repayment plan that could cut their monthly bills in half. The plan could reduce the average annual student loan payment by more than $1,000, according to the White House.

Kantrowitz said this could have “a big impact on mortgage underwriting” because other monthly financial obligations you have are very important to lenders.

The plan is not yet available to borrowers, but they should keep checking for updates.

You can also take advantage of a lower or eliminated monthly student loan payment to move forward on your other financial goals, Rossman said.

“Having less will help you make more progress paying off your credit card debt, which will increase your savings and investments,” he said.

Costs of a natural disaster


Summarizing the cost of a natural disaster into a dollar estimate eliminates the mental, emotional, and human costs of a natural disaster. It is easy to calculate the economic costs, but it is impossible to assess the psychological or emotional cost of people who have been displaced, who have lost a loved one or who have lost all their capital in a flood or other natural disaster.

The 2022 floods caused the kind of destruction the country had never seen, eclipsing the 2010 floods. Over 30 million people were displaced, while over a million homes were completely or partially destroyed. This effectively means that one million households have nowhere to live and have lost their principal capital.

The areas affected by the floods are already among the most economically backward areas of the country. A natural disaster acting as an economic shock effectively wiped out the little capital that more than a million households had. Hundreds of thousands of animals died in the floods, and in a region where livestock are not only a source of income but also a source of nutrition, such a loss can prove fatal.

Flood-affected areas are also those with low financial inclusion, where most savings are in the form of gold, silver, houses or livestock. As the rain wiped out all these assets indiscriminately, it will be impossible to estimate the loss of private wealth of an already economically vulnerable group. Such losses can potentially have a negative effect on the psychological health of the household, potentially scarring them for life.

Another very ignored facet is that of education. Hundreds of schools have been destroyed and it will be some time before any reconstruction begins, let alone be completed. School enrollment in the country is already extremely low, even compared to comparable economies. With more than 30 million people displaced, almost half of them children and young adults, access to education was permanently impeded until the end of reconstruction. The loss of school days, or even a year, sets an entire generation back – a cost that can never be quantified.

There may be hundreds of thousands of people with serious health conditions, conditions or special needs. Their suffering from the disaster would be magnified in the absence of dedicated medical facilities, as all attention would be diverted to immediate relief. Their suffering would be drowned in a larger crisis, while individuals would continue to suffer.

Households have lost thousands of hectares of crops, orchards and vegetation which were not only a source of income but also a source of subsistence. A complete annihilation of agricultural production means a significant impact on household income while eroding the availability of capital that could be used for planting in the coming crop cycle. The economic and psychological impact of losing a source of sustenance cannot be captured in the mind by a dollar estimate.

More than 5,000 kilometers of roads have been ravaged, straining supply chains in the process and driving the movement of goods from one part of the country to another. Such constraints would potentially lead to higher commodity prices as demand exceeds supply. In a scenario where much of household wealth has been wiped out and incomes have eroded, the limited supply of even the most basic staples is leading to runaway inflation in the affected areas.

The economic loss that can be attributed to households is staggering. As the devastating floods destroyed over a million homes, it is estimated that there was a potential erosion of wealth of over $1.6 billion. Nearly $1.2 billion of this was the erosion of wealth in Sindh, the highest of any province. Rebuilding these homes is estimated at around $2.5 billion, implying a huge cost for households that have already lost a substantial portion of their wealth and capital. Similarly, crop and livestock losses are estimated at over $2.5 billion. Indeed, the country’s most vulnerable economic segment has seen more than $5 billion of its private wealth wiped out and now remains at the mercy of the state and donors.

The country needs a reconstruction plan, and it needs it fast. The reconstruction must be sustainable. No lessons were learned from the 2010 floods, with catastrophic consequences. If lessons are not learned and infrastructure is not developed to withstand climate shocks, such destruction could become a recurring feature that not only takes a heavy toll on the economy, but also on people’s mental and physical health.

The state must intervene, otherwise a few additional economic and climatic shocks would completely neutralize the sovereign’s ability to operate or care for its inhabitants. It is time for the human cost to be considered paramount and for reconstruction to be done by prioritizing humans over donors or contractors.

The author is an independent macroeconomist.

9 Steps to Getting the Perfect Mortgage as Rates Rise


Image source: Getty Images

Following these nine steps can make a huge difference in the cost of your mortgage.

Key points

  • Mortgage rates have repeatedly hit record highs during the pandemic.
  • Rates are now much higher – over 5.00% for a 30-year fixed rate loan, on average.
  • Homebuyers will need to shop around more carefully and take more steps, like paying off debt and organizing paperwork, to get an affordable loan.

In the midst of the pandemic, qualifying for an affordable loan was easy enough for most homebuyers. Rates repeatedly hit record highs and it was possible to get a 30 year fixed rate mortgage for less than 3.00% if you had reasonable financial credentials.

Things have changed, however. Rates have increased significantly and now exceed 5.00% on average for the popular 30-year loan option. This obviously made borrowing much more expensive.

That doesn’t mean future homeowners should give up on getting a reasonably priced mortgage, though. Although no one will get a rate close to 3.00% anymore, it is possible to get the cheapest loan possible in today’s market by following these nine key steps.

1. Improve your credit score

Credit is one of the most important things lenders look at when setting your rate. If you can improve your credit score, you will become a much more competitive borrower. A score above 720 to 740 can help you get the best rates available at the time you borrow.

Improving your credit score can be done by reducing the amount of your available credit used, becoming an authorized user on someone’s credit card with a strong credit history, or asking your lenders to remove intentionally negative information if you’ve generally been a good customer who pays on time, but you have a mistake or two in your past.

2. Pay off your debt

Paying off your debt helps improve your credit score, which can help you get an affordable loan. It also improves another key metric that lenders look at: your debt-to-income ratio. It’s the ratio of debt to what you earn. The lower it is (which means the less debt you have), the more competitive your rate will be because you will be perceived as a less risky borrower.

3. Set a budget

You will want to budget realistically for how much you can afford to borrow. This will help you qualify for a more competitive loan since you reduce the risk to a lender by only borrowing what you can easily afford to repay. If you can borrow less, your mortgage will also be more affordable than if you had taken out a bigger loan, even if you can’t get the lower interest rate.

4. Organize your documents

Lenders are going to ask for a lot of paperwork, and it’s best to have it ready so you can act quickly with approval before rates go up even more. You should expect to provide tax returns, payslips, bank statements, and other proof of assets.

5. Decide which type of loan is right for you

There are many types of mortgage loans. A 15-year loan is an alternative to a 30-year loan, for example. It will come with a lower rate, but higher monthly payments because you’ve shortened the time to pay off your loan in full. Think carefully about the different tenure lengths to make the best choice for your needs.

6. Get multiple quotes from lenders

Since loan rates and terms vary by lender, you don’t just want to get the first loan someone is willing to give you. You should get multiple quotes for your mortgage from at least three different mortgage lenders, and ideally more. Online lenders, local and national banks, and credit unions are all worth looking into.

7. Get pre-approved

Once you’ve found an affordable loan, get pre-approved. This means submitting all of your financial details and getting an approval, provided you find an eligible home and don’t make big changes to your financial situation.

When you get pre-approved, you usually have the option to lock in at the current rate being offered to you at that time. This can help you avoid any rate hikes that may occur over the next few months.

8. Shop for the perfect home

You’ll want to make sure you find a home that your lender will allow you to borrow to buy. Specifically, look for a home that is priced within your budget and reasonably priced given market conditions. Lenders require an appraisal, and if a professional appraiser says the home isn’t worth as much as you’re offering, it could create problems getting final mortgage approval.

9. Avoid mistakes before closing

Finally, you want to make sure you don’t do anything that could jeopardize your mortgage before closing. Avoid changing jobs or borrowing more money, two red flags that could worry a lender.

By following these nine steps, you should hopefully be able to get a mortgage you’re happy with, even if rates are higher than they were a short time ago.

The Best Mortgage Lender in Ascent in 2022

Mortgage rates are at their highest level in years and should continue to rise. It’s more important than ever to check your rates with multiple lenders to get the best possible rate while minimizing fees. Even a small difference in your rate could reduce your monthly payment by hundreds.

This is where Better Mortgage comes in.

You can get pre-approved in as little as 3 minutes, without a credit check, and lock in your rate at any time. Another plus? They do not charge origination or lender fees (which can reach 2% of the loan amount for some lenders).

Read our free review

4 steps to lower your credit card interest rate


If you haven’t paid off all of your credit cards each month, you’re not alone. According to the Federal Reserve Bank of New York, US household credit card debt increased by $100 billion between the second quarter of 2021 and the second quarter of 2022.

Depending on how much debt you owe, you might not feel confident about getting out of it. However, learning how to negotiate credit card debt can provide you with a way to get relief.

Why should you negotiate credit card debt?

Negotiation can help you get out of debt faster. However, you won’t always be successful, and negotiation shouldn’t be your first course of action.

Consumers often consider negotiating after their debt has been assigned to a collection agency or after the creditor has hired a service provider to handle the communication, says Daryl Holman Jr., founder of debt elimination startup Revival. . “There are hardship plans that can arise before this stage, but the best thing for borrowers is to make their payments on time if they have the ability to do so.”

If you are unable to make payments on time but your debt has not yet been collected, negotiating with your credit card company is a much better option than ignoring the debt altogether.

“If you have an account with a large balance that is already overdue, a large amount of money in the bank, and negotiation skills, it may be a good idea to negotiate a (lump sum) credit card debt settlement,” explains Leslie Tayne. , financial lawyer and managing director of Tayne Law Group in New York.

Understanding your options when negotiating credit card debt can help you reach a manageable deal. Note that if you have had credit card debt, go to a collection agency, you can negotiate with the collection agents.

What are your options?

When negotiating with credit card companies, you can look for a lump sum settlement, a hardship agreement, or a relief agreement.

Lump sum payment

This option obliges debtors to make a bulk payment in advance for an amount less than the debt owed. Once creditors receive lump sum payments, you can expect the account to be listed as paid in full on your credit report.

“A lump sum settlement is the best route for you because you’ll usually get the best deal from your creditor,” Tayne says. “Plus, your debt will be gone.”

Keep in mind that settling your debt for less than you owe will hurt your credit score, although settling is always better than having it written off your credit report.

Hardship Agreement

Hardship plans are also called forbearance and can provide temporary relief to borrowers in need. For example, your creditor could reduce your minimum payment amount or interest rate or stop late fees, according to credit bureau Experian. However, unlike a lump sum settlement, you will still have to repay your total outstanding balance. After the hardship period ends, your regular account terms will return.

Training agreement

A ripple agreement is when the lender agrees to change the terms of the card, according to Experian. The creditor may reduce your minimum payment requirement or annual percentage rate or waive fees you have already incurred. If you still receive regular income, this option could be a solution to pay off your debt more quickly.

Advantages and disadvantages of negotiating credit card debt

There are pros and cons to negotiating credit card debt, whether your goal is to reach a lump sum settlement, a hardship agreement, or a relief agreement.


  • Can provide financial assistance. Depending on the option you pursue, you may be able to reduce your debt, reduce interest and/or lower fees.
  • Potentially slows bankruptcy. Negotiating your credit card debt can save you from having to declare bankruptcy. If creditors come to an agreement with you, they can avoid not receiving a refund if you go bankrupt.
  • Mental and emotional relief. Dealing with creditors can be stressful. In addition to receiving financial help, negotiating your debt can ease fears of being sued or facing other consequences.

The inconvenients

  • Tax implications. When you pay less than you owe under a lump sum agreement, the Internal Revenue Service treats any forgiven debt as taxable income. That could result in a higher tax bill for that filler year, Tayne says. Make sure you are financially ready for this.
  • Credit implications. When your credit report shows that a credit account is settled, it will negatively affect your credit score. However, this is not as bad as having the account listed as unpaid. Some creditors will close the account when you negotiate, according to Experian, and this can negatively impact your score.

How to negotiate your debt

There are a few steps to keep in mind when preparing for your negotiations with your credit card company.

1. Check the debt

Make sure you know how much you owe your credit card issuers before developing a negotiation plan. Typically, issuers sell outstanding debts to collection companies when they’re six months overdue, so you may not be able to negotiate with credit card companies on older items.

Once you’ve taken stock of your debt, move on to step two.

2. Choose an option

Explore the different options based on your financial situation and goals. A lump sum settlement may get you the best deal, but a hardship agreement may be a better choice if you only need temporary relief.

Also, it helps to have a list of terms you would like to apply. For example, you can request that your settled debt be shown as fully paid on your credit report, even if you settle it. The creditor may not agree, but it will help your credit if they do.

3. Contact your creditor

You can start by talking to a customer service representative from your credit card company. Throughout the negotiation, be polite, but stick to the terms that work for you. If you fail on your first call, don’t be discouraged. Call again and speak to another representative or supervisor who can provide decisive recourse.

4. Ask questions

During the negotiation, make sure you understand what you are required to do and what the creditor promises to do if you meet the terms of the agreement. If you don’t know what something in the agreement means, you should ask for an explanation. Some questions to ask might include:

  • How long will the process take?
  • How will the status of the account be reported to the credit bureaus once the terms of the agreement have been met?
  • When can I expect the written agreement?

5. Get everything in writing

Make sure you get all the terms you want in writing before agreeing to a deal, says Scott Glatstian, attorney at Rosenblum Law. If the creditor has agreed to declare the account as fully paid, for example, this should be clearly stated in the agreement.

What to do if you need help negotiating your credit card debt

If you don’t feel comfortable negotiating your credit card debt on your own, there are other options.

For-profit debt settlement

For-profit debt settlement companies specialize in getting creditors to accept lump sum payments that are less than your total debt. However, beware of this option – some companies use high-risk tactics and there are fees.

The company will likely ask you to stop payments to the creditor altogether in hopes of getting a lump sum settlement. However, creditors could simply refuse to deal with the settlement company, according to the Consumer Financial Protection Bureau.
. In this scenario, you’ve racked up more late fees and penalties on the account and taken hits to your credit, and you still owe the debt.

Non-profit credit counseling

Nonprofit credit counselors work with you and your creditors to develop a debt management plan. You can find credit counselors through entities such as the Financial Counseling Association of America and the National Foundation for Credit Counseling.

According to the NFCC, counseling is often offered free or at low cost. Counselors can help you not only with the credit card debt in question, but also with budgeting and other ways to stay on track financially.

Alternatives to negotiating with your credit card company

Depending on your situation, an alternative approach might be more appropriate. Some options include:

  • Debt consolidation loans. A debt consolidation loan simplifies paying off your debts by combining two or more accounts into one loan. You are left with a due date, interest rate, and minimum payment to track each month. You may also be able to get a lower interest rate on a debt consolidation loan than a credit card.
  • Balance transfer credit cards. A balance transfer credit card can be an alternative to negotiating credit card debt if a high interest rate is causing your problems. Eligible borrowers can choose a card with a lower interest rate or a promotional 0% APR and transfer all or part of their credit card debt to it. If you are using a 0% introductory APR, make sure you make payments on time and pay the full balance before the end of the introductory period.

EPA Takes First Step to Designate PFAS as a Hazardous Chemical Under CERCLA | MG+M The law firm


On August 26, 2022, the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) announced proposed regulations to designate two types of per- and poly-fluoroalkyl substances (PFAS) as “hazardous chemicals” under the Comprehensive Environmental Response, Compensation and Liability Act (CERCLA).

PFAS are a class of synthetic chemicals widely used as surfactants in industrial and consumer products, including but not limited to: fire-fighting foam, cosmetics, clothing, kitchenware, and carpets. . They are known for their bio-persistence and, unlike most other chemicals, do not “break down” in the human body when consumed. The EPA proposal applies specifically to perfluorooctanoic acid (PFOA) and perfluorooctane sulfonic acid (PFOS), two of the most commonly used types of PFAS.

In the press release announcing the proposed rule, the EPA says its proposal “is based on significant evidence that PFOA and PFOS may pose a substantial hazard to human health or well-being or the environment.” . The EPA goes on to state, “PFOS and PFOS can accumulate and persist in the human body for long periods of time, and evidence from laboratory studies and human epidemiology indicates that exposure to PFOA and/or PFOS can cause cancer, reproductive, developmental, cardiovascular, hepatic and immunological effects.

While the language used by the EPA and other regulators strongly suggests to the public that there is a medical consensus that exposure to PFAS causes cancer and other adverse health effects, it is not the case. Despite the fact that PFAS have been widely and heavily used for decades in the United States, no epidemiological study to date has found a “causal effect” – as opposed to an “association” – between exposure to PFAS and the cancer. A “causal effect”, as opposed to an “association”, is demonstrated when exposure to a particular substance shows a statistically significant increase in the number of certain health problems, such as cancer, compared to what would be expected in a environment not exposed population.

The EPA’s proposed designation of PFOA and PFOS as “hazardous substances” under CERCLA, if adopted, is important for a number of reasons. Companies that continue to manufacture and sell products containing PFOA or PFOS will be required to monitor and report releases of the chemical to the government, and will be regulated by the Department of Transport under the Transportation of Materials Act. dangerous.

Perhaps most importantly, the designation of PFOA and PFOS as “hazardous” chemicals under CERCLA will result in potentially unlimited liability for some of the nation’s largest industries, including aviation, plastics and petroleum. Under CERCLA, the federal government can order any party found responsible for contaminating land with a “hazardous” substance to pay cleanup costs. The federal government can – and most often does – cast a very wide net by assigning responsibility for the costs of remediation and/or removal of hazardous substances from a designated site. For example, companies or individuals may be assigned liability under CERCLA simply for purchasing land known to be a source of past contamination, for exercising “substantial control” over the operations of the facility or contamination has occurred or for the transport of hazardous substances. (Kaiser Aluminum & Chemical Corp. v. Catellus Development Corp. (976 F.2d 1338 (9th Circ. 1992; US. v. Bestfoods, 524 US 51 (1998)). CERCLA penalties can also be applied retroactively, which means that those contributing to the use of PFAS at a designated site may be liable for all or part of the cleanup costs, even if the contamination occurred before the PFAS was listed as a hazardous substance, or even before the passage of CERCLA itself (United States v. Monsanto, 858 F.2d 160 (4th Cir. 1988).

It is important to note that the designation proposed by the EPA will not take effect immediately. The proposed regulations are subject to the public notice periods and comment requirements of the Administrative Procedure Act. Finally, given the lack of medical consensus on whether PFOA and PFOS cause disease, compared to the high cost of remediation, it is almost certain that the proposed regulations will be challenged in court by one or several members of the industries concerned.

Police: Men bought over $12,000 in OneWheel power boards from Williamsburg bike shop using fake credit card information


WILLIAMSBURG, Va. (WAVY) – Police are now looking for men they believe bought OneWheel electrical panels for nearly $13,000 from a Williamsburg bike shop using someone’s credit card information. ‘other.

Police say the incident happened on June 29 at around 5:35 p.m. Officers responded to the bike shop at 100 College Row regarding a suspicious incident.

A preliminary investigation into the incident revealed that the two men purchased five OneWheel electrical panels for a total of $12,757.31. The duo attempted to make the purchase using two different credit cards which were both declined. On the third attempt, a credit card number was provided and the transaction was processed.

Suspicious of the men’s behavior and the large purchase, a store employee reported the incident. Neither subject was at the scene when officers arrived.

Further investigation revealed that the individuals had used a credit card number and identification belonging to someone else. The men have been identified as Jermaine Clive Gobern, 32, of Tampa, Florida, and Dhrai Justin Davis, 26, of Tampa, Florida.

Investigators obtained felony warrants for both men, which included obtaining money by false pretense, conspiracy to obtain money by false pretense and intent to defraud.

Gobern is described as a black man, 6 feet 2 inches tall, weighing 230 pounds, with brown eyes and black hair. Davis is described as a 5’7″, 150lb black man with brown eyes and black hair.

Anyone with information regarding the whereabouts of Jermaine Gobern or Dhrai Davis should call the Williamsburg Police Department at 757-220-2331.

Those with information can submit an anonymous tip by calling 1-888-LOCK-U-UP, downloading the P3 Tips app on a mobile device, or visiting www.p3tips.com and submitting a tip.

How often can you refinance your car? (2022)


Whether you want to take advantage of a lower interest rate or hope to change the terms of your loan, there are plenty of reasons to refinance your vehicle. But how many times can you refinance your car?

We at the Home Media Review Team will explore the refinancing process here – when you can do it, how many times you can refinance your vehicle and if you should do it in the first place. Before refinancing your car, consider comparing the best auto refinance rates online to save money.

How often can you refinance your car?

You can refinance your car as often as you like, and there are no legal restrictions on how long you should wait before doing so. You will not encounter any law preventing you from refinancing your car at any time.

On the other hand, some problems could arise if you refinance too often. Drivers who extend their repayment periods over and over again risk having their loans reversed and could possibly hurt their credit ratings.

Potential problem: Owing more than your car is worth

Your loan is “upside down” if you owe more than your car is actually worth. This can happen if you don’t get a good interest rate or if you refinance too early when the car’s depreciation is greatest.

Auto loans can also be upset if you extend your refinance terms too often and end up with a much longer payment period. During the term of the loan, you will pay more than the value of the car at the beginning. With multiple refinances on the same car, you are more likely to end up with an upside-down car loan.

Potential problem: damage to your credit score

Every time you get a pre-approved car loan, your credit score could suffer due to serious investigation. Normally, your credit score will recover fairly quickly. If you complete another application within a month or two, your FICO score may remain lower than the first. This could make it harder to get approved for new credit cards, personal loans, or even mortgages.

Multiple requests of the same loan type within 14 days will only be added once, but after that the count usually starts over. If you’re on the line between two credit score brackets, you might actually start receiving more. car loan rate after several refinancings.

How long does it take to refinance a car loan?

You can refinance an auto loan as early as the business day after the initial transaction is completed. No law requires you to wait a certain amount of time before refinancing your car with a new loan. However, make sure you can actually get a lower rate by refinancing your existing loan or you could end up with harsh repayments in the long run.

If you bought your car new from a dealership, the salesperson may have told you to wait six months or a year before refinancing. Generally this is not true. Dealerships often receive commissions after you’ve made loan payments for six months, so they may be tempted to tell you not to refinance right away. It’s rare that drivers are contractually obligated to wait a certain amount of time before refinancing their vehicles.

Another issue to watch out for is prepayment penalties. Auto lenders in 36 states and the District of Columbia are allowed to charge drivers a fee for terminating auto loans with a term of less than 60 months. In addition to a prepayment penalty, those refinancing a new or used car could end up having to pay title fees.

Should I refinance my car loan?

People typically refinance their vehicles to save money by getting lower monthly payments. It’s best to refinance your vehicle when you get a better interest rate while keeping the repayment period about the same or shorter than your current car loan.

In other words, it makes more sense to choose a 48 month refinance loan than a 60 month loan if each option has a similar interest rate.

Increasing the remaining term of your loan to 60 months may give you a slightly cheaper car payment per month, but you could end up paying significantly more than your original loan. If you received a higher interest rate, cheaper monthly payments could still result in higher overhead.

If you carefully compare the best rates in the market, chances are that refinancing your loan balance is the right choice. The main exception concerns motorists who have already refinanced their car often in the recent past.

When to refinance a car loan

It’s a good idea to refinance your car if the following conditions are true:

  • Your credit score has improved and you can get a better interest rate
  • You find that your current lender or dealer gave you the wrong rate the first time
  • You can afford higher payments and want to shorten the term of the loan to save on total interest charges
  • A family member is willing to co-sign the loan for better terms
  • You are in a better financial situation and devote less income to paying off your debts

When not to refinance a car loan

Be careful and consider not refinancing your car loan in the following situations:

  • Your credit score has gone down and you will get a higher interest rate on the loan
  • You only have a few years left on your car loan
  • Your car is over 10 years old
  • You’re upside down on the loan
  • Your car loan has prepayment penalties in the contract

Our recommendations for car loan refinancing

Refinancing your car loan is often a fairly simple process that can be completed in a matter of hours. We recommend contacting credit unions in your area and considering the most reputable auto refinancers. Below are two of our top picks if you want refinance a car loan.

Automatic approval: first choice for refinancing

Starting Annual Percentage Rate (APR): 2.25%
Loan amounts: $5,000 to $85,000
Loan conditions: 12 to 84 months

Auto Approve is a marketplace where you can compare refinance offers from various online lenders. Borrowers with the best credit reports could find refinance rates as low as 2.25% through Auto Approve. Most customers have positive experiences with Auto Approve – the company has a 4.7 – out of 5.0 stars on Trustpilot.

Keep reading: Automatic Approval Review

PenFed Credit Union: Best Credit Union

From April: 4.24%
Loan amounts: $500 to $150,000
Loan conditions: 36 to 84 months

PenFed is our top choice for auto refinancing among credit unions. The financial institution usually offers exceptional rates for those with excellent credit scores, but borrowers with bad credit will likely be turned down. Reviews on Trustpilot mention courteous customer service agents and give PenFed Credit Union 4.6 out of 5 stars.

Our Methodology

Because consumers rely on us to provide unbiased and accurate information, we’ve created a comprehensive rating system to formulate our ranking of the best car loan companies. We’ve collected data on dozens of loan providers to score companies on a wide range of ranking factors. The end result was an overall score for each vendor, with the companies scoring the most points at the top of the list.

Here are the factors taken into account by our assessments:

  • Reputation (25% of total score): Our research team considered ratings from industry experts and each lender’s years in business to assign this rating.
  • Prices (25% of the total score): Auto loan providers with low APRs and high loan amounts scored highest in this category.
  • Availability (25% of total score): Companies that cover a variety of circumstances are more likely to meet consumer needs.
  • Customer experience (25% of total score): This score is based on customer satisfaction ratings and transparency. We also considered the responsiveness and helpfulness of each lender’s customer service team.

*Data correct at time of publication.

Biden’s student loan forgiveness is a game-changer for this graduate, but will it be enough to help millions of renters finally buy a home?


By Aarthi Swaminathan

Canceling a federal student loan of up to $20,000 could lower graduates’ debt-to-equity ratios, boost credit scores and increase their down payment, analysts say

All Honor Mann wants is to buy a house for her family of five.

La Butte, Mont. The resident, who hadn’t repaid her student loan before the payment break from March 2020, is renting, spending around $1,100 on a cramped bedroom. This is about a quarter of her household income.

Ideally, Mann, a 42-year-old mother of three who works in retail, would like to take out a mortgage and buy a house and lower her mortgage payments to $600 or $700 a month, which would make finances much more manageable. , and also help in asset accumulation.

She and her husband have good credit scores of over 700 and want to buy a house for around $180,000. But because his loans are in default, their applications continue to be denied.

“It’s frustrating that if you can pay $1,100 in rent, they’re not going to lend you enough to have that as a mortgage payment. It’s, like, if you can pay the rent, obviously you’re going to be able to pay the mortgage” — and maintenance costs, Mann added.

But thanks to a recent move by the Biden administration, Mann, who owes about $40,000 in federal student debt, co-owned by her ex-husband, is likely to bail out of default and buy this home. She had incurred the debt while attending Bible college in Indiana. And since she was a Pell Grant recipient, she’ll likely also see her debt burden drop by $20,000.

“It would be a game changer,” Mann told MarketWatch. “Just getting it in order would be a game-changer, and if we could separate the loans, that would be a miracle.”

The Biden administration announced last week that it would forgive federal student loan debt for some borrowers, a proposal that progressive Democrats — and even the president himself — have long championed.

The federal government plans to erase $10,000 of debt for borrowers earning up to $125,000 and provide additional relief of $10,000 to borrowers who received a Pell grant when they went to college .

The White House said the move would cancel debt for about 20 million borrowers and nearly 90% of the relief would go to households earning less than $75,000 a year. The administration also announced it would extend the pause on student loan payments, collections and interest until Dec. 31. The freeze was due to expire on August 31.

The federal government also plans to give troubled borrowers a “fresh start” by using delinquent loans to get them in good standing, meaning any defaults or defaults will be cleared and they can get back to work. payment in order.

For many student debtors like Mann looking to buy a home, outstanding loans have hampered their ability to save for a down payment on their home, affecting their debt-to-income ratio and credit score, a National Realtors spokesperson says the Association.

Thus, for these potential buyers, the cancellation of the debt is likely to impact them significantly.

For defaulting borrowers like Mann, the ability to start fresh may help some qualify for a mortgage for the first time in years.

Mann owns a federal family education loan, which was consolidated with her then-husband, in 2001. When her ex-husband stopped making payments after their divorce in 2011, her loans quickly fell into disrepair. default. The loan has been so long in arrears that it has disappeared from his credit report. But she was, before the pandemic, having her salary seized by the federal government.

Restoring her loans to their current state in addition to writing off $20,000 of debt would be a “big deal” for Mann, she said, because it would help her get back on track. to repay the debt, as well as to regain the ability to apply for a mortgage from the Ministry of Housing and Town Planning.

HUD did not respond to MarketWatch’s request for comment.

For the entire debtor student population, debt cancellation would mean that they would have an increased ability to take out a mortgage, or even save more for a down payment.

Early data implying that only the pause in student loan payments itself caused student debtors to reallocate funds intended for student loans to mortgages.

Using credit bureau data from February 2020, August 2020, February 2021 and August 2021, Urban Institute researchers found a “substantial increase” in first-time home buying among student borrowers during the payment pause, compared to non-borrowers. borrowers.

Most of these student borrowers were paying off their loans before the break took effect, meaning they were able to reallocate those funds to their mortgage.

“We see indications that at least for people who were making payments, removing those payments made them somewhat more likely to take out a mortgage,” Kristin Blagg, one of the report’s authors, told MarketWatch.

To be clear, this is not a direct relationship, they warned. This could be due to several reasons explained by Blagg and his co-writer Jason Cohn. During the pandemic, people have cut back on dining out, spending on vacations and other expenses, which could also have impacted their interest in taking out their mortgage — not just the pause in payments pushing them to do so. TO DO.

Still, for many borrowers, pausing payments helped improve credit scores, according to New York Fed research, which helped them through the homebuying process.

Canceling student debt would go one step further in helping student debtors, experts say.

On the one hand, it would also reduce borrowers’ debt ratios, especially if they did not have a substantial amount of outstanding loans.

In addition, debtors can use available money to save for a down payment, according to some evidence. As student loan payments are suspended, many debtors have taken the opportunity to save more money for a down payment, said Ali Wolf, chief economist at Zonda, based on surveys. of the millennium made by his company.

Student loan debtors benefiting from the break were able to save enough to cover down payments of around 5% to 8%, she estimated.

Interestingly, “often what people find is that they can actually make the monthly mortgage payment,” Wolf explained. Yet millennials have chosen rent, even with skyrocketing prices, because they are unable to cover the down payment, she pointed out.

So, by extension, she said there was “no doubt” that writing off $10,000 in student loan debt would help first-time buyers over time, Wolf said.

This will likely impact housing demand, an expert said.

The effect of canceling the debt of nearly 20 million borrowers “could significantly increase the pool of highly motivated potential first-time buyers with demand for around 1.5 million homes for sale,” Buck wrote. Horne, analyst at Raymond James, in a note. tuesday.

Horne’s back-of-the-envelope estimate, which looked at National Realtors Association survey data, and several other indicators, took into account that student borrowers in the past specifically indicated that they would use the debt relief to buy a house.

“Overall, we see this as a potential milestone for the US housing ecosystem,” Horne said.

“The potential to add incremental demand at the scale of 1-2 million newly eligible/qualified/motivated buyers in a US real estate market with only 1.7 million units currently available for sale…in our view , qualifies as a significant potential demand shift,” he added.

Therefore, the cancellation of student loans is likely to trickle down to the housing sector, helping first-time buyers, an academic added.

“President Biden’s student debt cancellation plan will make homeownership more accessible to 43 million Americans, and especially student borrowers from middle- and low-income families for whom cancellation strengthens the solvency and increases wealth,” Alí Bustamante, associate director for education, employment, and worker power at the Roosevelt Institute, told MarketWatch.

Do you have ideas on the housing market? Write to MarketWatch reporter Aarthi Swaminathan at [email protected]

Also see:

‘I’ll believe it when I see it’: Borrowers brace for hurdles to promised student debt relief

My student debt of $10,000 is forgiven. What should I do now? Saving for retirement, investing in stocks and bonds or buying a house?

Here are details on how the new student loan repayment plans work

-Aarthi Swaminathan


(END) Dow Jones Newswire

09-01-22 0007ET

Copyright (c) 2022 Dow Jones & Company, Inc.

New York officials want credit card giants to start tracking gun purchases – Daily Press


NEW YORK – Mayor Eric Adams and Comptroller Brad Lander are seeking to use New York government retirement investments as leverage to pressure the credit card industry to launch a credit card purchase tracking system. firearms, arguing that such a mechanism could help prevent future mass shootings.

Under current rules, MasterCard, VISA, Amex and other credit card networks must categorize purchases in everything from grocery stores to bike shops under specific merchant category codes. But there are no such codes for gun and ammunition retailers – meaning purchases in those categories are only listed as “miscellaneous” on credit card reports.

At a Tuesday afternoon press conference at City Hall, Adams, Lander and a group of other local officials said establishing a weapons code would allow financial institutions to detect and report suspicious gun purchases to law enforcement, such as an unusually high number of firearms purchased in a short period of time.

Notably, some American mass shooters have made extraordinarily large purchases, including the perpetrator of the 2016 Pulse nightclub massacre in Florida, who used a MasterCard to buy $26,000 worth of guns and ammunition in the days before the attack.

But Lander said MasterCard, VISA and Amex have so far opposed a proposed arms dealer code pending before the International Organization for Standardization, the entity responsible for regulating the code system.

“Unfortunately MasterCard, American Express and VISA have not supported this simple, convenient and vital tool,” Lander said. “The time has come for them to do so.”

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In order to increase the pressure, Lander said the city’s three public superannuation funds — which hold more than $800 million invested with MasterCard, VISA and Amex — have issued formal shareholder proposals with the giants. credit cards demanding that they support the creation of a new code for arms purchases.

“Why wouldn’t you want to do that?” said public attorney Jumaane Williams, administrator of the city’s pension funds. “It’s preventive and it empowers people. What can you tell us to explain why you wouldn’t do this, when you do it everywhere else, except for what causes death and carnage? »

Despite the tough talks, Lander hasn’t promised to hand over city pension money to credit card behemoths if they vote against creating a new gun dealers code when the International Organization for Standardization will meet this fall.

“I’m hopeful that these three companies will understand where their investors are and where the American people are,” the Comptroller said.

Representatives for Amex and VISA did not return requests for comment on Tuesday.

Seth Eisen, a spokesman for MasterCard, said the company is still considering the proposal before the International Organization for Standardization. But he also noted that MasterCard values ​​the “privacy” of its customers.

“As we do with other MCC proposals and related topics, we are considering how it could be implemented and managed by banks that connect merchants to our network,” Eisen wrote in an email. “This will help us continue to provide a payment system that supports all lawful purchases while protecting the privacy and decisions of individual cardholders.”

Debt consolidation vs bankruptcy: what’s the difference?


Our goal at Credible Operations, Inc., NMLS Number 1681276, hereafter referred to as “Credible”, is to give you the tools and confidence you need to improve your finances. Although we promote the products of our partner lenders who pay us for our services, all opinions are our own.

Debt consolidation with personal loan or bankruptcy: Both are debt solutions, but one is better than the other. (Shutterstock)

Debt consolidation and bankruptcy are two options for dealing with overwhelming debt. Both offer a long-term solution to your debt, but they work very differently and have varying consequences for credit.

A personal loan can be a good tool for consolidating high-interest debt. Credible, it’s easy to view your prequalified personal loan rates from various lenders, all in one place.

Debt consolidation vs bankruptcy

Debt consolidation and bankruptcy can both help you manage your debts, but it’s important to understand how each works before deciding which option is right for you. Here are some key differences between debt consolidation and bankruptcy.

Debt Consolidation

Debt consolidation merges multiple debts into one, usually by taking out a new loan or a balance transfer credit card to pay off your existing debt balances. This option is best suited for those who can pay off their debt but have difficulty managing multiple monthly payments or high interest rates.

Debt consolidation can hurt your credit in the short term since it requires taking on new debt. But it can increase your long-term credit as you pay off your debt. Debt consolidation may have a small associated cost in the form of loan origination fees or balance transfer fees, if you are using a balance transfer credit card to consolidate.

How long it will take to get rid of your debts depends on the debt consolidation path you choose, how much debt you have and how much you can afford to pay each month. But it may be possible to be debt free within five years.


Bankruptcy is another solution to debt, but with a very different process and different ramifications. Unlike debt consolidation, bankruptcy is a legal proceeding. And instead of helping you consolidate debt or get lower interest rates, it helps you get rid of debt altogether.

If it sounds too good to be true, know that there are some serious downsides. First, not all types of debt can be discharged in bankruptcy, so you may still find yourself stuck with some debt.

What you need to know about debt consolidation

In most cases, debt consolidation involves take out a personal loan to settle your other debts. You will then have only one debt with only one monthly payment to settle. In some cases, you may qualify for a lower interest rate than you’re paying on your other debts, which can also save you money in the long run.

Debt consolidation can also be done in other ways, including using a balance transfer card to manage credit card debt or a home equity loan or home equity line of credit (HELOC) to pay off your debt.

Advantages of debt consolidation

  • Streamlines debt repayment — Debt consolidation can help you go from multiple monthly payments and interest rates to one. Not only is it easier to track your debts, but you might also end up paying less each month.
  • Can get a lower interest rate — Debt consolidation can lead to lower interest rateespecially if you are consolidating high interest debt like credit cards or using secured debt like a home equity loan to consolidate your debt.
  • Can improve your credit — Although you may see a temporary drop when you open new debt, debt consolidation can improve your credit usage and make it easier to make on-time payments each month.
  • Getting Out of Debt Earlier — With a potentially lower monthly payment and interest rate, debt consolidation could help you pay off your debt faster. Depending on the amount of your debts, it can take up to several years or as little as a few months to become debt free.

Visit Credible for compare personal loan rates from various lenders, without affecting your credit.

Disadvantages of debt consolidation

  • May pay fees — Debt consolidation may incur additional costs in the form of origination fees on a Personal loan or a home equity loan, or a balance transfer fee on a credit card. Consider additional fees to ensure that consolidating your debt will make financial sense.
  • The interest rate cannot be lower — There is no guarantee that debt consolidation will result in a lower interest rate. Personal loans can have high interest rates, especially for borrowers with bad credit. If you already have low interest rates on your current debts, debt consolidation might not be beneficial.
  • Assets could be at risk — Depending on the type of debt consolidation you use, you could be putting other assets at risk. For example, a home equity loan is secured by your home, which means your lender could foreclose on your home if you stop making your payments.
  • May not reach root cause of expense — If you haven’t addressed the root cause of your debt, your debt consolidation loan could help you pay off your credit cards, but encourage you to use them for additional purchases. As a result, you can find yourself in an endless cycle of debt.

What you need to know about bankruptcy

If your financial situation is dire and you are considering bankruptcy, here are the two different types:

  • Chapter 7 Bankruptcy — This type of bankruptcy allows you to pay off certain debts. In return, your non-exempt assets will be sold to help provide compensation to your creditors. What is considered exempt property depends on your state, but can include work-related items, a personal vehicle, equity in your personal residence, and household furniture.
  • Chapter 13 Bankruptcy — With Chapter 13 bankruptcy, a court representative will help you create a repayment plan rather than paying off your debts. You will pay installments to your creditors for a number of years and, in exchange, you will be able to keep all your assets. Any outstanding debt at the end of the repayment term will be discharged.

It is important to note that some debts cannot be discharged in a Chapter 7 bankruptcy. Debts that will not be discharged include child support, alimony, taxes, and student loans. Chapter 7 bankruptcy also has an income limit. Those who wish to declare bankruptcy and are not eligible for Chapter 7 can use Chapter 13 instead.

Advantages of bankruptcy

  • Can provide debt relief — Bankruptcy can relieve you of your debt and, in the case of a Chapter 7 bankruptcy, help you pay off some of your debts entirely.
  • Can help you avoid foreclosure — Bankruptcy can help you avoid a legal judgment or foreclosure due to unpaid debts.
  • Some goods will be taken – While some of your personal assets will be liquidated to pay off loans, others will be exempt from liquidation.
  • May not lose all your possessions — In the event of a Chapter 13 bankruptcy, you may be able to keep your assets while having some of your debts discharged.

Disadvantages of bankruptcy

  • Sustainable credit effects — Bankruptcy stays on your credit report for up to 10 years and could prevent you from borrowing money, renting an apartment, getting insurance, or even getting certain jobs.
  • Could lose your property — Depending on the type of bankruptcy, you could end up with a lot of your personal assets seized and liquidated to make payments on your debts.
  • Not all debts are eligible for discharge — Certain debts, including student loans and child support, cannot be discharged in bankruptcy.
  • May have to pay a fee — Bankruptcy can result in additional court, administrative and attorney fees during a time when you are already struggling to pay what you owe.

Bankruptcy should be considered a last resort. Consider a personal debt consolidation loan instead. You can quickly and easily compare personal loan rates with Credible to find the one that meets your needs.

What are the factors driving the payday loans market? Technavio’s market analysis reports answer key questions


NEW YORK, August 30, 2022 /PRNewswire/ — The “Payday Loan Market by Type (In-Store Payday Loans and Online Payday Loans) and Geography (North America, EuropeACPA, South America, Middle East and AfricaWE, ChinaUK, Japanand Germany) – The “Forecast and Analysis 2022-2026” report has been added to Technavio’s offering. With ISO 9001:2015 certification, Technavio has proudly partnered with over 100 Fortune 500 companies for over 16 years.

The latest market research report titled Payday Loans Market Growth, Size, Trends, Analysis Report by Type, Application, Region and Segment Forecast 2022-2026 has been announced by Technavio, which is proud to associate with Fortune 500 companies for over 16 years

The difference in potential personal loan market growth between 2021 and 2026 is $8.4 billion. To get the exact annual growth variance and annual growth rate, request a FREE sample PDF report

Key market dynamics

  • Market driver: the growing awareness of payday loan among young people is driving the growth of the market. About a third of people aged 25 to 34 have a college loan, which is the biggest source of debt for Gen Z. Due to debt, individuals have to apply for payday loans, fueling the growth of the fintech industry. Additionally, the rising cost of living around the world has put significant pressure on students to pay off their debts. Thus, many young people are favoring online payday loans, which will fuel the growth of the targeted market over the forecast period.

  • Market challenge: Payday loans are considered predatory, which is hampering the growth of the market. Payday loans target people with low income and low credit. These people are also targeted by several other providers and financial institutions. However, payday lenders have a bad reputation for aggressively pursuing unpaid loans. Thus, their reputation may challenge the growth of the payday loans market over the forecast period.

Technavio offers key drivers, trends, and challenges that will impact the future of the market. Check out our FREE sample PDF report now!

Market segmentation

The Payday Loans Market report is segmented by Type (In-Store Payday Loans and Online Payday Loans) and by Geography (North America, EuropeACPA, South Americaand the Middle East and Africa). North America will be the leading region with 42% of the market growth during the forecast period. The United States is the key country in the payday loan market in North America.

Discover the contribution of each segment summarized in concise infographics and detailed descriptions. See a sample FREE PDF report

Supplier Landscape

The global payday loan market is fragmented due to the presence of many regional and global players. Suppliers compete in terms of differentiated product offerings and business expansion. Some major players have wide geographical presence and extensive market reach. To survive and succeed in such a competitive environment, vendors must distinguish their offerings with clear and unique value propositions.

Some companies mentioned

Do you want your report to be personalized? Talk to an analyst and customize your report according to your needs.

Related Reports

Unsecured Business Loan Market Growth, Size, Trends, Analysis Report by Type, Application, Region and Segment Forecast 2022-2026

Microloans Market by Source and Geography – Forecast and Analysis 2022-2026

Scope of the payday loan market

Report cover


Page number


Year of reference


Forecast period


Growth momentum and CAGR

Accelerate at a CAGR of 4.34%

Market Growth 2022-2026

$8.4 billion

Market structure


Annual growth (%)


Regional analysis

North America, Europe, APAC, South America, Middle East and Africa, USA, China, UK, Japan and Germany

Successful market contribution

North America at 42%

Main consumer countries

United States, China, Japan, United Kingdom and Germany

Competitive landscape

Leading companies, competitive strategies, scope of consumer engagement

Profiled companies

AARC LLC, Axis Bank Ltd., Citigroup Inc., Creditstar Group AS, CS SALES LLC, DJS UK Ltd., Enova International Inc., FloatMe Corp., GAIN Credit Inc., GC DataTech Ltd., Kotak Mahindra Bank Ltd., KrazyBee Services Pvt. Ltd., Maxed Up Media Ltd., Payday America Inc., Payday Loans Ltd., PDL Finance Ltd., Speedy Cash, Upward Finance Ltd., Western Circle Ltd. and Whizdm Innovations Pvt. ltd.

Market dynamics

Parent market analysis, market growth drivers and barriers, analysis of fast and slow growing segments, impact of COVID-19 and future consumer dynamics, and analysis of market conditions for the forecast period.

Personalization area

If our report does not include the data you are looking for, you can contact our analysts and customize the segments.

Browse Consumer Discretionary Market reports

Main topics covered

1. Summary

2 Market landscape

3 Market sizing

4 Five forces analysis

5 Market Segmentation by Type

6 Customer Landscape

7 Geographic landscape

8 drivers, challenges and trends

9 Supplier landscape

10 Vendor Analysis

11 Appendix

About Us

Technavio is a global leader in technology research and consulting. Their research and analysis focuses on emerging market trends and provides actionable insights to help companies identify market opportunities and develop effective strategies to optimize their market positions.

With over 500 specialist analysts, Technavio’s reporting library consists of over 17,000 reports and counts, spanning 800 technologies, spanning 50 countries. Their customer base consists of enterprises of all sizes, including more than 100 Fortune 500 companies. This growing customer base relies on Technavio’s comprehensive coverage, in-depth research, and actionable market intelligence to identify opportunities in existing markets and potentials and assess their competitive positions in changing market scenarios.

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Southwest Harbor could become more walkable if voters approve new spending

More than five years after the city was first approved for a half-million-dollar grant to build a new sidewalk along part of Main Street, voters in Southwest Harbor will weigh in again this week for what some hope will be the last funding needed for the project.

If the additional $800,000 is approved Thursday, it would allow the city to hire a contractor to rebuild a significant portion of Main Street between Apple Lane and Ocean’s End, according to City Manager Marilyn Lowell.

Voters have raised funds for the project on several occasions since May 2019. The expected cost of the project has increased as the project has been delayed, in part due to the COVID-19 pandemic. The Maine Department of Transportation also had to contact and negotiate with every property owner along the road about right-of-way easements so the road, which doubles up and points to Route 102, could be widened, according to Lowell.

The city is asking voters to approve an additional $802,769 for the project to make up the difference between the funding the city has already budgeted and the low bid that came in this summer. If voters approve funding for the additional $802,769, the city would contract with RF Jordan to complete the work for $2.9 million, Lowell said.

Lowell said the city hopes to use the grant money to pay for part of the project. Still, he must have voter approval for the full amount in order to qualify for the surety that will pay for the project. She said the city plans to have to take out a $1.8 million bond and then use other funding sources for the remaining $1.1 million.

A new 5-foot-wide sidewalk along the west side of the road, a separate 5-foot-wide breakdown lane and infrastructure improvements under the road would be part of the project, along with the relocation of utility poles from the west side of the road. New culverts and catch basins would be installed to manage stormwater, and the city would upgrade water lines that distribute water to local properties and sewage connections that carry sewage to the plant. City sewage treatment off Apple Lane, next to the large Dysart Marina.

The most visible improvement for passers-by would be the sidewalk, which would have an asphalt walking surface and granite curb. Currently there is what doubles as a pedestrian/cycle lane and a breakdown lane on the west side of the road which offers little protection from passing vehicles.

Lowell said while city officials are disappointed that the cost of the project has increased significantly since it was first conceived, further delays would likely mean the project will cost even more.

“All of the selected board members are trying to keep costs from increasing even more,” she said.

How to Make a Carter’s Credit Card Payment


Tye Carnelli / istockphoto.com

Carter’s is one of America’s leading retailers of baby and children’s clothing. Their clothes are sold in more than 600 brand-owned stores and various department stores across the country. Like many other apparel companies, Carter’s offers its customers a store credit card with exclusive perks. Here’s everything cardholders need to know to make their Carter’s Credit Card payments on time through different channels.

How do I make a payment with my Carter’s Credit Card?

A Carter’s store credit card offers account members many benefits and rewards. However, in order to continue enjoying it, customers must make their payments on time. Keeping their accounts in good standing is the only way to avoid late fees, reduce interest, and positively impact their credit history. Carter customers can choose to make their payments online, by mail or by phone.

Can I pay my Carter’s Card online?

To make an online payment, cardholders must use Comenity Capital Bank’s Carter Credit Card page. This site gives them two options, the most convenient being the EasyPay feature, which allows cardholders to skip the hassle of creating an account and logging in.

Alternatively, account members can register on the site to manage their accounts, view their statements, and make payments from their preferred devices. To do this, they must:

  • Go to Comenity Capital Bank’s Carter Credit Cards website.
  • Click or tap the “Register Now” button.
  • Complete the form with personal and account details.

Once they have successfully created an account, customers can easily log in using their username and password. They can follow the site’s instructions to complete Carter’s credit card payments in a timely manner.

How do I make a Carter’s credit card payment by mail?

Although it may be less convenient than using their online accounts to make their Carter’s credit card payments, cardholders can choose to use the US Postal Service instead. They can send a check or money order to:

Comenity Capital Bank

Box 183003

Columbus, Ohio 43218-3003

Using regular mail to make payments will take a little longer than using the online interface. Customers may need to plan ahead to avoid inconvenience.

How do I pay my Carter’s Credit Card over the phone?

Comenity Capital Bank allows customers to make expedited credit card payments over the phone. Their customer service number is 1-877-563-5767. This method, however, may incur a $15 fee.

Interest and Late Charges for Carter’s Credit Cards

Sometimes late credit card payments are unavoidable. Cardholders should know their credit card’s late fee policy to avoid surprises if they cannot pay on time. Not paying your Carter’s Card balance in full each month could result in high interest. Carter’s credit card currently has a late fee of $30 for those who have made all their payments on time in the previous six cycles, and $41 for those who consistently pay late.

Final grip

Having a Carter’s credit card can be extremely convenient for in-store rewards hunters. However, it is imperative to make all credit card payments on time. The methods mentioned above will allow Carter customers to keep their accounts up to date so that they can continue to receive the best offers.

Information is accurate as of August 29, 2022.

Editorial note: This content is not provided by any entity covered by this article. Any opinions, analyses, criticisms, evaluations, or recommendations expressed in this article are those of the author alone and have not been reviewed, endorsed, or otherwise endorsed by any entity named in this article.

About the Author

Daniela Rivera is a bilingual freelance content creator with a background in advertising and media. She holds a degree in communication sciences and more than 10 years of professional experience as an editor. She specializes in generating engaging and creative concepts and copy for advertising, e-commerce, blogs, podcasts and social media.

What an influx of extra money looks like for many


Image source: Getty Images

What happens when you get a break from one paycheck to the next?

Key points

  • Around 472 million stimulus payments were issued in 2020 and 2021, and for some they were life changing.
  • Stimulus payments have allowed many to pay down debt and build an emergency fund.

In June, CNBC investigated the 2020 and 2021 stimulus payments from an interesting angle. The news agency wanted to know if the payments changed the way Americans think about money. Considering the millions of households that have received payments, it’s impossible to believe everyone feels the same way. Still, it’s worth digging deeper and noting how some recipients have been impacted.


CNBC spoke with a mother of three from Florida named Denise. Denise co-directs a nonprofit called Central Florida Jobs With Justice, and between three rounds of economic impact payments, has received more than $10,000 in stimulus funds.

According to Denise, she used the money to pay off her car loan and a credit card. She built up an emergency fund, which she had never been able to do before. As her debt has been reduced, Denise’s credit rating has improved.

And this emergency fund? It helped the family get by when their partner lost his job earlier this year. Despite what she’s been through, Denise says she feels more financially stable today than she has at any other time in her adult life.

A wake-up call?

What is most interesting about Denise’s experience is how she changed her view of money. She took control by automating bill payments and putting more effort into managing her finances. Having stimulus money to spend has given her a glimpse of what’s possible and, judging by the CNBC report, inspired her to take an active role in her financial well-being.

Salaam and Hina

Salaam and Hina are a married couple raising two young children in Virginia. Like many Americans, the couple sometimes feels like they can’t move forward financially. With stimulus money in their bank account, the couple was able to reduce credit card debt, pay for groceries and buy diapers for the baby.

Although they are both professionals — Salaam was a public benefits lawyer (now deputy director) and Hina teaches online college classes — the couple say they lived paycheck to paycheck. Before receiving stimulus funds, they would “rearrange their debts” to stay on top of their bills. Debt shuffling occurs when someone takes advantage of a 0% credit card offer and transfers existing credit card debt to that card. The debt is still theirs, but now they won’t have high interest rates hanging over their heads until the promotional period expires.

Salaam describes the costs associated with a new baby as “draining water from a leaky boat”. And that’s where the enhanced child tax credit has helped.

Despite having great careers and “doing everything right,” the couple’s finances were a cautious balance before the stimulus payments. While they may find themselves back where they were now that the stimulus is over, they now know what it’s like to have enough to cover the basics and focus on paying down debt.


Nestor, a California resident, stressed by debt. In total, he received about $4,000 in federal and state stimulus payments. Nestor told CNBC he used half to catch up on loans, 10% to set up a savings account and the rest to pay for basics like car insurance and his cell phone bill.

Most important, perhaps, is what Nestor says the experience has taught him. According to the new graduate, the experience puts into perspective how much money he makes each month and how much he has to spend. He learned that every dollar really counts when it comes to personal finance.

An estimated 472 million stimulus payments have been issued in 2020 and 2021. For some, these payments have shown what is possible and how good it is to have bills paid and a financial safety net in place.

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Get Home Safe: Tips to Avoid Scams in Chicago’s Tight Rental Market | Black voices | Chicago News


A tight housing market and rising interest rates are excluding many potential buyers, putting pressure on Chicago’s rental market.

According to city data, 60% of Chicago residents live in rental properties, and a June report from the real estate platform Domu finds that the median rent for one-bedroom apartments in Chicago has risen 8% since January. With fierce competition for apartments, the city’s tenants – many of whom are black – are more vulnerable targets for scam artists and sleazy landlords.

The Chicago Better Business Bureau Regional Manager Dennis Horton said a common scam circulating right now is fake apartment listings created using photos of real listings, but created by people who don’t actually own the property. advertised property.

“People looking for apartments will go online and find what they think is the perfect apartment for them. They’ll see great photos with great amenities and low rents. And that’s where the trouble begins “Said Horton. “They talk to a landlord who they’ll never be in contact with other than by email or text, and then they’re asked to fill out an application, pay the deposit, the first month’s rent. then they do all these things and they never hear from that “owner” again.

Michelle Gilbert, legal and policy director of the Lawyers Committee for Better Housing, said that in some cases victims even move into apartments only to find out later that the person they were paying rent to is not the legal owner of the house. property.

“We have litigated these cases where someone is posing as an agent of the landlord and sometimes even has keys, allows a tenant to move in, the tenant will pay rent. And before they know it, they get a notice that the person they’ve been dealing with isn’t the agent of the property, and then they’re forced off the property, forced to be evicted in a very short time,” says Gilbert.

A big red flag for potential fraud: the payment method renters are asked to use, Horton said.

“If you’re being asked to pay through online apps like Venmo or Zelle, you’re dealing with a scammer,” he said.

Horton said a quick online search and in-person confirmation can also help renters avoid scammers.

“Be sure to research this address online. If you look up that address online and it comes up again, you’ll know it’s being used as fraudulent property,” Horton said. “And make sure you go see the property in person. You don’t want to just take someone’s word for it that you haven’t met, because very often these flagged landlords give you an excuse as to why they can’t meet you – that they’re out of town or just want to meet you. They have several different people looking for this property so you need to jump on it now or you will lose. Make sure you are proactive and go and see the property and if you knock on the door and someone opens that door and says it’s not for rent then you have saved yourself identity theft and the loss of a lot of money.

Horton also advises owners to scan listings regularly to ensure their properties aren’t being spoofed online.

Gilbert warns landlords to carefully review eviction cases in potential tenants’ files to make sure they are not violating the Fair Housing Act themselves.

“We know that in the city of Chicago, 40% of all evictions do not result in judgments against the tenant. In fact, we know from the racial impact of eviction that if a landlord refuses to house someone just because the case has been filed, they are likely acting illegally and against fair housing for a tenant “, she said.

Gilbert said tenants should also check their records to make sure they aren’t being eliminated from consideration based on old eviction records.

“We have worked hard to seal old eviction records and it is sad to see the number of instances where the tenant is not aware of the old eviction record until a credit report is executed and he wasted money on the credit file and they probably won’t get the housing,” Gilbert said. “So check your credit. You might be eligible to have that file sealed.

More resources

Gilbert suggested the following resources for more information on tenant rights. Those wishing to learn more about closing eviction cases can contact the Lawyers Committee for Better Housing directly.

While Symbotic (NASDAQ:SYM) shareholders are in the 1-year black, those who bought a week ago aren’t so lucky

Symbotic Inc. (NASDAQ:SYM) shareholders might be rather worried as the stock price has fallen 33% in the past month. But with the hindsight of last year, the feedback has been rather encouraging! During this period, we have seen the stock easily outperform the market return, gaining 27%.

Given that long-term performance has been good but there has been a recent pullback of 15%, let’s see if the fundamentals match the stock price.

However, if you’re not interested in researching what drove SYM’s performance, we have a free list of interesting investment ideas to potentially inspire your next investment!

Symbotic is currently unprofitable, so most analysts would look to revenue growth to get a sense of how fast the underlying business is growing. When a business is not making a profit, you generally expect to see good revenue growth. Indeed, rapid revenue growth can be easily extrapolated to predict profits, often of considerable size.

Last year, Symbotic saw its revenue increase by 108%. That’s skyrocketing growth, even compared to other loss-making stocks. While the 27% year-over-year share price gain is pretty tasty, you could argue that it doesn’t fully reflect the strong revenue growth. So, frankly, now might be a good time to investigate Symbotic in detail. Human beings have a hard time conceptualizing (and valuing) exponential growth. Is that what we see here?

The graph below illustrates the evolution of income and income over time (reveal the exact values ​​by clicking on the image).

NasdaqGM: SYM Earnings and Revenue Growth August 28, 2022

Symbotic is well known to investors and many smart analysts have tried to predict future profit levels. We therefore recommend that you consult this free report showing consensus forecast

A different perspective

Symbolic shareholders should be satisfied with the total gain of 27% over the last twelve months. A substantial portion of this gain has come in the past three months, with the stock rising 24% over that time. Demand for shares from multiple parties drives the price up; word may be spreading about its virtues as a business. While it is worth considering the various impacts that market conditions can have on the stock price, there are other, even more important factors. For example, we have identified 3 warning signs for Symbotic (2 are concerning) that you should be aware of.

Sure, you might find a fantastic investment by looking elsewhere. So take a look at this free list of companies that we believe will increase their profits.

Please note that the market returns quoted in this article reflect the average market-weighted returns of stocks currently trading on US exchanges.

This Simply Wall St article is general in nature. We provide commentary based on historical data and analyst forecasts only using unbiased methodology and our articles are not intended to be financial advice. It is not a recommendation to buy or sell stocks and does not take into account your objectives or financial situation. Our goal is to bring you targeted long-term analysis based on fundamental data. Note that our analysis may not take into account the latest announcements from price-sensitive companies or qualitative materials. Simply Wall St has no position in the stocks mentioned.

Calculation of discounted cash flows for each share

Simply Wall St performs a detailed calculation of discounted cash flow every 6 hours for every stock in the market, so if you want to find the intrinsic value of any company, just search here. It’s free.

Regulators fine sports book to allow credit card use on site – KIWARadio.com


Des Moines, Iowa — State regulators on Thursday fined a sportsbook $60,000 for illegally allowing the use of credit cards on its site. Racing and gaming administrator Brian Ohorilko said the penalty involves American Wagering, which does business as Caesars Sportsbook.

He says the audit revealed several issues.

There were a total of 485 transactions worth $212,000, which he said was deemed quite egregious by the Racing and Gaming Commission. This follows a similar penalty issued at the last committee meeting against FanDuel for $75 thousand for a two-count violation. Ohorilko says this is something that has been proposed in the sportsbooks and there will be further penalties at future Commission meetings.

Ohorilko says the companies are working to make fixes for these types of violations.

Ohorilko says there are other penalties — such as license suspensions — that stewards can impose if the issues aren’t corrected. But he says the ultimate goal of each of these violations is to bring them back into line with the law.

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3 ways to reduce your credit card debt

Paying by credit card online with a laptop
You can start reducing your credit card debt by following proven strategies.

Getty Images

Credit cards can be a valuable tool for building your credit while enjoying rewards and benefits. But if used irresponsibly, you could end up with a mountain of debt that can cripple your finances.

The good news is that you can reduce your credit card debt by freeing up money in your budget, lowering your interest rates and payments, and following proven repayment strategies. Remember, you are in control of your debt and can beat it with the right plan, persistence, and self-discipline. Follow the tips in this guide to start paying off your credit card debt.

And, if your credit card debt is already bothering you, you can start repairing your credit history with a repair expert. Get a free credit report today.

Understanding Credit Card Debt

Credit card debt is a type of revolving debt that allows you to borrow up to your credit limit. Typically, revolving credit is indefinite, so you don’t have to pay off the debt at the end of the loan term, usually at the end of your monthly billing cycle. In contrast, installment loan accounts are closed once the balance is fully paid.

If you have a large debt on your credit card, you may find it difficult to pay more than your minimum payments. As such, you could end up paying high interest and fees. Let’s say you have a balance of $2,000 on a credit card with an annual percentage rate (APR) of 18% and you make minimum payments of $50 per month. It will take you about five years to pay off the balance, including $1,077.25 in total interest.

Additionally, paying off debt can have a positive impact on your credit score. As stated by FICO, your credit utilization rate – the amount of credit you use – is 30% of your credit score. Many credit experts recommend keeping your credit utilization ratio below 30% to maintain a good or excellent credit score, but the lower your ratio, the better.

And if you have bad credit (or not enough credit history), you can work on improving it by working with a credit repair company. Several repair options are available to you.

3 proven ways to reduce your credit card debt

The more you can pay beyond your minimum payments, the faster you can pay off your credit cards. If your budget is tight, look for ways to free up some extra money to apply to your payments.

Looking at your expenses and cutting unnecessary expenses is one way to create a cushion in your budget. For example, you might consider cutting out streaming services you rarely use or an expensive gym membership. It’s up to you to decide which luxuries you’re willing to do without and which are non-negotiable.

Increasing your income is another option to help you get out of debt faster. If you have more time, you might want to volunteer for overtime at work or take on a side gig. You can also talk to your employer about a pay raise if it’s been a while since your last job.

Freeing up money will go a long way toward paying down debt. Following these three strategies can help you reach your goal:

1. Negotiate a lower rate

One of the fastest ways to pay off your debt is to call the customer service number for your credit card issuer on the back of your credit card and ask for a lower interest rate. Be prepared to explain why you deserve a lower APR. Let them know how long you’ve had the card, your on-time payment history, and whether your credit score is higher now than when you originally applied for the card.

If the representative can’t help you, ask to speak to a manager or supervisor with the authority to make a decision about reducing your APR. If a supervisor does not change your rate permanently, ask for a temporary rate reduction or ask what hardship options are available to you.

2. Consolidate your debts

Two of the most common ways to consolidate your debts are with a debt consolidation loan or a balance transfer credit card.

Debt consolidation loan: A debt consolidation loan is an installment loan, usually with fixed interest rates and payment amounts. Locking in a fixed-interest loan could act as a hedge against rising federal interest rates.

Getting a personal loan can be a good idea if you have several high interest credit cards. According to the Federal Reserve, from April 2022 to June 2022, the average interest rate on a 24-month personal loan was 8.73%, compared to an average interest rate on a credit card of 16.65%. .

You might consider debt consolidation if you were required to make minimum payments and want a structured repayment plan. A debt consolidation loan will come with a fixed end date when your debt balance will be zero.

Before taking out a debt consolidation loan, check with your lender to see if they charge origination fees to process the loan. These fees can range from 1% to 8% of the loan amount and could reduce your savings.

Balance Transfer Credit Card: With good credit, another option might be to apply for a credit card balance transfer. These cards usually come with a low or 0% APR introductory period, with promotions for some of the best cards lasting up to 21 months. During the introductory period, you will not have to pay any interest charges.

With 0% interest, your full payment amount can be used directly to pay off your balance, minus any fees or other charges on your bill. Even if you can’t completely pay off your credit card debt before the introductory period expires, you could still save hundreds of dollars by paying off as much debt as possible during this period.

Remember that your credit card company will likely charge you a balance transfer fee, usually 3% or 5% of the transfer amount. If your debt balance is relatively low, the transfer fee could offset the savings you’ll realize during your interest-free period.

3. Follow a debt repayment strategy

Although making regular payments above the minimum amount owed helps reduce your credit card debt, it can help to follow a plan, such as debt avalanche or snowball strategies. debt.

Debt avalanche method: This credit card repayment strategy involves paying off your most valuable cards first. To do this, you will make minimum payments on all of your credit cards except the credit card with the highest APR. Once you’ve paid off all of the debt on that card, you’ll take the money you paid into it and add it to the pot. You will now have more money to pay off the credit card with the second highest interest rate. Repeat the process until all of your credit cards have a zero balance.

The main advantage of the debt avalanche method is that you can save money by paying off your credit cards with the highest interest rates first.

Debt Snowball Method: The debt snowball strategy is also about making minimum payments to free up cash and focus on paying off a card. In this case, you will direct your money to pay off your credit card with the lowest balance. Once your credit card with the lowest debt amount is cleared, you can take the money you used to pay for that card and use it to pay off your card with the next lowest balance. .

With every card you pay off, the amount you can apply to pay off your debt grows like a snowball. Many people prefer the debt snowball method because quick wins build momentum and serve as inspiration to keep going.

Of course, everyone has a unique financial situation. While some may use a debt avalanche method to save money and reduce credit card debt, others may opt for a balance transfer card to take advantage of the interest-free introductory period. If your debt is overwhelming, you may want to turn to credit counseling or ask your credit card issuers for programs in case you have difficulty. Credit repair experts are here to help.

Macquarie Global Infrastructure – GuruFocus.com

Macquarie Global Infrastructure Total Return Fund Inc. (NYSE: MGU) (the “Fund”), a closed-end fund, paid a monthly distribution on its common stock of $0.13 per share to shareholders of record at the close of business on August 19, 2022.

The following table sets out the estimated amount of sources of distribution for the purposes of section 19 of the Investment Companies Act 1940, as amended, and the related rules adopted thereunder. The Fund estimates the following percentages, of the total amount of the distribution per share, attributable to (i) current and prior year net investment income, (ii) net realized short-term capital gain , (iii) the long-term net realized capital gain and (iv) a return of capital or other source of capital as a percentage of the total amount of the distribution. These percentages are disclosed for the current distribution as well as the amount of the cumulative distribution per share for the Fund year-to-date.

Current cast of:

Per share ($)


Net investment income



Net realized capital gain in the short term



Long-term net realized capital gain



Return of capital or other source of capital



Total (per common share)



Total fiscal year to date

Distribution of:

Per share ($)


Net investment income



Net realized capital gain in the short term



Long-term net realized capital gain



Return of capital or other source of capital



Total (per common share)



The amounts and sources of distributions set forth in this 19(a) Notice are estimates only and not for tax reporting purposes. Actual amounts and sources of amounts for tax reporting purposes will depend on the Fund’s investment experience over the remainder of its financial year and may be subject to change as a result of tax regulations. The Fund will send you a Form 1099-DIV for the calendar year which will tell you how to report these distributions for federal income tax purposes.

The performance figures presented below are based on the change in the net asset value per share (“NAV”) of the Fund, compared to the annualized distribution rate for this current distribution as a percentage of the NAV on the last business day of the preceding month. broadcast recording date.

Fund performance and distribution information

Fiscal year to date (01/12/2021 to 31/07/2022)

Annualized Distribution Rate as a Percentage of Net Asset Value^


Cumulative distribution rate on NAV ^^


Cumulative total return on NAV*


Average annual total return on net asset value for the 5-year period ending 07/31/2022**


^ Based on the Fund’s net asset value as of July 31, 2022.

^^ The cumulative distribution rate is the cumulative amount of distributions paid during the Fund’s fiscal year ending November 30, 2022 based on the Fund’s net asset value as of July 31, 2022.

* Cumulative total return is based on the change in net asset value, including distributions paid and assuming the reinvestment of such distributions for the period from December 1, 2021 to July 31, 2022.

** The 5-year average annual total return is based on the change in net asset value, including distributions paid and assuming the reinvestment of such distributions, and extends to the last business day of the month preceding the month of the record date of the current distributions.

The payment of dividend distributions in accordance with the distribution policy may result in a reduction in the net assets of the Fund. A decrease in the net assets of the Fund may result in an increase in the annual operating expenses of the Fund and a decrease in the market price per share of the Fund to the extent that the market price is closely correlated to the net asset value per share of the Funds. The distribution policy may also adversely affect the Fund’s investment activities to the extent that the Fund is required to hold more cash than it would normally hold or to the extent that the Fund is required to liquidate securities that he would not have sold, in order to pay the distribution of the dividend. The distribution policy may, in certain circumstances, cause the amounts of taxable distributions to exceed the minimum amount required to be distributed under the tax rules, such excess will be taxable as ordinary income to the extent that losses carried forward reduce the amount required capital gains distributions that year. The Board of Directors has the right to modify, suspend or terminate the distribution policy at any time. Modification, suspension or termination of the distribution policy may affect the market price per share of the Fund. Investors should consult their tax advisor regarding federal, state and local tax considerations that may apply to their particular situation.

Although the return on net asset value may be indicative of the investment performance of the Fund, it does not measure the value of a shareholder’s investment in the Fund. The value of a shareholder’s investment in the Fund is determined by the market price of the Fund, which is based on the supply and demand for shares of the Fund in the open market. Shareholders should not draw any conclusions about the performance of the Fund’s investments from the amount of such distribution or the terms of the Fund’s Managed Distribution Plan.

In addition, the board of directors reviews the amount of any possible distribution and the income, capital gains or capital available. The Board of Directors will continue to monitor the level of distribution of the Fund, taking into account the net asset value of the Fund and the financial market environment. The Fund’s distribution policy is subject to change at any time by the Board of Directors. The distribution rate should not be considered as the dividend yield or the total return of an investment in the Fund.

The Fund is not intended to be a complete investment program. An investment in the Fund involves risk, and the Fund may or may not be able to achieve its investment objective for a variety of reasons. The following summarizes some of the Fund’s risks, but does not purport to be a complete list of all risks. Investors should read the Fund’s Prospectus carefully and consult their own advisers.

The Fund is also subject to risks as it is an actively managed portfolio. Industry concentration and infrastructure industry risk. The Fund will be concentrated in the infrastructure sector and will be more sensitive to adverse economic or regulatory events affecting this sector than a fund which is not concentrated in a specific sector. Non-US Investment Risk. The majority of the Fund’s investments will be in non-US issuers and a significant portion of the transactions executed for the Fund will take place in foreign markets. Investments in securities and instruments of non-US issuers involve certain considerations and risks not generally associated with investments in those of US issuers. Emerging Markets Risk. In addition to non-US investment risk, investments in emerging markets may expose the Fund to increased risks which may be more volatile than investments in developed markets. Use of derivatives and hedging instruments. The Fund may use derivatives and employ various hedging techniques. Derivatives can be illiquid, increase losses disproportionately and have a potentially significant impact on the performance of the Sub-Fund. Some of the investment techniques the Fund may employ for hedging purposes or to enhance income or total return expose the Fund at additional risk. Leverage risk. The Fund intends to use leverage as part of its investment strategy. The use of leverage will increase the volatility of the Fund and increase the risk for investors. Any difficulty in maintaining the Fund’s leverage could result in the diversion of cash flows and/or require the liquidation of part of the Fund’s portfolio. Restrictions imposed as a result of any leverage may directly or indirectly impede the ability of the Fund to take actions that might otherwise be taken in an unleveraged portfolio of similar assets.

Delaware Management Company is an indirect wholly owned subsidiary of Macquarie Group Limited (MGL). With the exception of Macquarie Bank Limited ABN 46 008 583 542 (“Macquarie Bank”), any entity of the Macquarie group mentioned herein is not an authorized depository institution for the purposes of the Banking Act 1959 (Commonwealth of ‘Australia). The obligations of these other Macquarie group entities do not represent deposits or other liabilities of Macquarie Bank. Macquarie Bank does not guarantee or provide any other assurance with respect to the obligations of such other Macquarie group entities. In addition, if this document relates to an investment, (a) the investor is subject to investment risk, including delays in repayment and loss of income and invested capital and (b) none of Macquarie Bank or any other entity within the Macquarie group does not guarantee any rate of return or return on the investment, nor guarantee the return of capital on the investment.

See the source version on businesswire.com: https://www.businesswire.com/news/home/20220826005375/en/

Credit cards: upgrading your card? Follow these 4 tips


When you apply for your first credit card, you usually get an entry-level card with basic features. While these cards are good for starting your credit journey, they are not designed to offer lucrative perks such as accelerated rewards/cashbacks, travel perks, lounge access, and more. However, over time, as your income increases and your credit score improves, you can upgrade your card to a card that offers benefits more suited to your spending.

Here are some things you should know before updating your credit card.

Choose a card that matches your spending preferences

Most credit cards are designed to provide significant return value on one particular category while providing general benefits in other spending categories. For example, travel credit cards come with features that allow you to save on your travel expenses, such as additional rewards/discount offers on travel bookings, free airport lounge access or free plane tickets. Fuel credit cards, on the other hand, offer return value on fuel expenses. Understand the categories you spend the most in, then switch to a card that offers benefits in those categories.

Also Read: SIP: Systematically Beat Market Volatility with Systematic Investment Plans

Know the details of the reward

Once you know the type of credit card you want and have selected a few cards, read the features offered by each card as well as the associated terms and conditions. For example, if you opt for a shopping credit card, you need to see how you will recoup the value, i.e. in the form of rewards, cashback or direct rebate.

“If the cards offer the best benefits only on certain brands or online shopping platforms, it is better to choose one whose advantages correspond to your interests. Some credit cards offer a good rate of gain but come with “a maximum cap on earnings. So if you’re a big spender, you should also check the upper limit for cashback or rewards,” says Sachin Vasudeva, Director and Head of Credit Cards, Paisabazaar.

Consider the annual fee on the upgraded card

A credit card with better features would generally incur higher annual fees than a basic credit card. It is very important to do the cost-benefit analysis to see if the annual fee charged by the bank is justified for all the benefits offered. Additionally, credit cards usually come with an annual fee waiver feature where you get the annual fee waived/waived if you go over a pre-set spend threshold. When you upgrade the card, you need to make sure the annual fee is justified, or you can easily reach the spending milestone so the fee is waived/waived.

Request a higher credit limit

When you upgrade your card, issuers usually increase your credit limit as well. “A higher credit limit will benefit you in many ways. You get more purchasing power and access a higher amount in times of financial emergency. A higher limit would also reduce your overall credit utilization ratio, which would improve your credit score. Note that increasing the limit depends on many factors such as the type of card offered, your current income, etc. “says Vasudeva.

Also Read: North Goa: A Booming Retirement and Second Home Hotspot

Also try to get more clarity on the status of your current card before moving on to a new card. You may have a rewards or cash back balance that has not yet been credited to your card account. When requesting an upgrade, ask the issuer if the reward balance will be added to the new card account or if you need to redeem it before the transition. Clearing them up will ensure you don’t lose reward points earned on your current credit card.

Maximize benefits

* If you opt for a shopping credit card, check if you will get the value in the form of rewards, cashback or direct rebate

* Do the cost-benefit analysis to see if the annual fee charged by the bank is justified for the package of benefits offered

* When you upgrade your card, issuers usually increase your credit limit. A higher limit will lower your overall credit utilization rate

What are the risks of HELOCs and home equity loans?


For many homeowners, borrowing from the Equity in your home is an attractive option now, thanks to soaring home values over the past two years. But before you take out a home equity loan or home equity line of credit, you need to be sure you understand the risks associated with home equity loans.

Read on to find out what the specific financial risks are when it comes to HELOC and home equity loans and how you can avoid them.

How does a mortgage loan work?

Home equity loans allow you to borrow money against the equity you have built up in your home and provide you with a lump sum of cash at a fixed interest rate. HELOCs are also equity loans, but they work like a revolving line of credit, which means you can withdraw your money in installments and your interest rate is variable, so your monthly payments will change.

Equity loans are useful and can be cost effective ways to access cash at lower interest rates than other types of loans, such as personal loans or credit cards. For example, home equity and HELOC rates are both below 7% right now, while personal loans have an average interest rate of 10.7%, according to CNET’s sister site Bankrate. But they come with major risks, such as foreclosure, that other types of financing do not involve. Most homeowners use home equity loans for major living expenses such as home renovations and to consolidate other types of debt. As long as you have accumulated at least 15% to 20% of the equity in your home, lenders will generally allow you to borrow up to 85% of the equity in your home.

What are the risks of home loans?

You can lose your house.

The biggest disadvantage of any type of home equity loan is that you must use your home to secure the loan. When you use your home as collateral to secure a loan, the bank or lender can take possession of your home to reimburse themselves if you miss payments or fail to repay your equity loan for any reason.

“You’re putting your house up as collateral for both a home equity loan and a HELOC, which means that if you don’t make payments on either, you could lose your house for sure. foreclosure,” says Robert Heck, vice president of mortgages at Morty, an online mortgage marketplace.

For most people, the loss of their home is a much bigger consequence than a decline. credit scorethat’s why it’s essential to carefully consider whether you can manage the repayment of a home loan over a long period of time.

Variable interest rates can break your budget.

With HELOCs, one drawback to consider is that they have variables interest rate, which means you won’t have regular monthly payments. What you owe each month will go up or down depending on general interest rate trends. HELOC rates are affected by the prime rate, which is currently 5.5%. The prime rate is the interest rate used by banks to determine lending rates, as well as the economic policy set by the Federal Reserve. So far this year, the Fed has raised interest rates four times and plans to continue raising their.

This means that your HELOC payments are likely to increase in the near future in our current economic environment. It is therefore essential to ensure that your income can easily adapt to fluctuations in your monthly payments.

Home equity loans, on the other hand, have fixed interest rates. In an environment of rising interest rates, such as the one we are experiencing today, this can prove beneficial for owners who will not have to worry about their rates increasing – and therefore their payments.

You will make higher monthly payments if your rate increases.

If interest rates stay high or rise, be prepared to continue making higher monthly payments over time with a HELOC. With experts predicting a potential recession On the horizon, it’s important to consider your job security and how much emergency savings you have if major life events occur, such as a layoff. Most financial experts recommend keeping at least three to six months of living expenses in an emergency fund if possible.

Make sure you can afford to continue making payments on your first mortgage as well as your equity loan (more commonly known as a second mortgage), should any changes in your financial situation occur.

With a home equity loan, however, you never have to worry about your monthly payments increasing because these loans have a fixed interest rate that doesn’t change. Currently, the average interest rate for a $30,000 home equity loan hovers around 7% and HELOCs are at 6.5%, according to Bankrate.

An increase in debt can lower your credit score.

A HELOC is a revolving line of credit that works like a credit cardso maintaining a high balance over time can lower your credit score. Although one of the benefits of a HELOC is that you can only make interest payments during the initial drawdown period, once your repayment period begins your monthly payments will increase as you will also begin to repay the major.

Make sure you can handle such an increase comfortably within your budget. Use Bankrate HELOC Calculator Where home equity loan calculator to determine if your monthly budget can support a second mortgage payment. Making regular, on-time payments for your HELOC can also have a positive impact on your credit score.

Falling home values ​​can limit your loan.

After two years of record appreciation in home valuehome prices in the United States are, on average, up 42% since the start of the pandemic. It’s fine, until one recession or some other cataclysmic economic event causes home values ​​to plummet again, in which case borrowing against your home equity could backfire.

When your outstanding loan balance ends up being more than the value of your home, your lender has the option of freezing or reducing your line of credit since your home can no longer be used to secure the loan. Having a loan balance larger than your home is worth is known as negative equity, or when you’re “upside down” on your mortgage.

How to protect yourself from the risks of home equity loans

If interest rates continue to rise, which experts expect, one option is to convert a HELOC to a Fixed Rate HELOC or a home equity loan so you can fix your interest rate and keep your payments consistent.

In general, it is prudent to consult a financial adviser when making important financial decisions such as taking out a loan on your home. Financial professionals can help you determine if such a loan is right for your long-term financial goals.

Either way, it is crucial to model different versions of your budget to make sure you can afford your monthly payments even if your financial situation changes. Determine the maximum loan amount you can cover in the event of an increase in interest rates or a life event like job loss so you can continue to make payments without interruption, regardless of the factors macro and microeconomics.

As always, keep track of your credit and sign up for a free weekly credit report to make sure your credit score stays healthy, because you’ll likely have a balance for years with a home equity loan.

The bottom line

Home equity loans and HELOCs carry the risk of losing your home if you miss several payments. In times of economic uncertainty and with the Fed poised to continue raising rates, it’s essential to make sure your monthly budget can handle fluctuations in your second mortgage payment if your payments increase. As a homeowner, you need to weigh the pros and cons of securing a loan with your property. And as with any loan, it’s always a good idea to shop around with multiple lenders and compare rates and fees to ensure you’re getting the most favorable terms available.

Rystad Energy and Enverus foresee a boom in LNG and CCUS investments

New research released this week by a pair of leading energy analytics and intelligence firms shows how current events are having a big impact on energy investments, outside of the renewable energy and electric vehicle segments. Both studies predict that much of the investment will be centered along the Gulf Coast of Texas and Louisiana.

The Norwegian company Rystad Energy published a report on Wednesday that predicts a rather incredible increase in global investment in new import/export infrastructure related to liquefied natural gas (LNG). The report forecasts LNG-related investments to reach $42 billion by 2024, a 50% increase over current year spending and 21 times the $2 billion invested in such facilities in 2020 .

In a statement, the authors of the report said that “new LNG projects are mainly driven by a short-term increase in demand for natural gas in Europe and Asia due to Russia’s war in Ukraine and sanctions and consequent restrictions on Russian gas exports”. The $42 billion in new investment expected in 2024 compares to Rystad’s valuations of $27 billion in 2021, $28 billion this year and $32 billion expected in 2023, which will lead to a total investment explosion. over four years of $129 billion for the LNG sector.

Equally interesting, Rystad then sees new LNG-related investments fall off a cliff, falling back to just $2.3 billion by 2029, as governments focus on increasing investment in energy sources. renewable energy. The company sees a rebound in 2030, with planned investments of $20 billion.

“Recent price spikes in natural gas markets around the world have somewhat constrained gas demand, triggering a resurgence in coal-fired power generation in many countries. However, governments remain optimistic about gas as an affordable transition fuel for electricity in the coming years, as evidenced by the rapid growth in LNG infrastructure investment,” said Palzor Shenga, Vice President of the analysis at Rystad, in the press release.

These critical infrastructure investments have become increasingly urgent in recent months as European customers have found themselves paying record prices for LNG imports as they attempt to wean their countries off Russian supplies. S&P Global Commodities reported on Wednesday that LNG shipments for October delivery in Northwestern Europe were priced at 60.183 mBtu on August 22, more than 6 times the Henry Hub price for US domestic gas.

Unsurprisingly, Rystad predicts that a significant percentage of new investment will take place in the United States, primarily along the Gulf Coast: “The $10 billion Golden Pass LNG project in Texas, a joint venture between QatarEnergy (70% ) and ExxonMobil
(30%), is expected to start production by 2024, adding export capacity at the Sabine Pass LNG terminal totaling approximately 18 Mtpa. Venture Global’s Plaquemines LNG in Louisiana – a $13.2 billion development approved earlier this year – is expected to produce around 24 Mtpa and start in 2025. In a move that may become more common in the crowded market, Cheniere Energy has signed an agreement with Chinese state giant PetroChina will supply approximately 1.8 Mtpa of LNG from its Corpus Christi LNG facility, with deliveries from 2026 to 2050.”

Meanwhile, a report by US energy analytics and intelligence firm Enverus predicts major new investments in carbon capture, utilization and sequestration (CCUS) following the passage of the Biden climate spending bill. The report, compiled by the company’s Enverus Intelligence Research (EIR) subsidiary, predicts that much of the new investment will take place in the state of Louisiana, which is rich in types of subterranean formations suitable for CCUS projects.

In a statement, the report’s authors said, “EIR records document 10 million tonnes per year of operational global sequestration capacity, which is only 3% of planned capacity. When evaluating sequestration locations, reporting and ranking considered reservoir quality and proximity to point sources of emissions and transport as leading indicators. As a result, the Oligocene-Miocene of southern Louisiana, with its clean sand aquifers, stood out among many places and is now considered one of the best storage reservoirs in the world by the EIR.

Evan MacDonald, senior geology associate at Enverus, added, “With the recent substantial increase in CCUS project announcements in the lower 48, southern Louisiana stands out as a major hotbed for current and future sequestration activity. To develop an idea of ​​how these projects stack up in terms of storage potential and to gain insight into future project potential, a good understanding of the reservoir into which injection is essential.

The report’s authors go on to say that the CCUS-related tax credit and other incentives contained in Biden’s climate spending bill are likely to trigger what they call a “rush” to launch such projects in the months and years to come. With ExxonMobil, Shell and other major companies already mounting large CCUS projects centered along the Gulf Coast of Texas and Louisiana, this region is expected to increase its role as a major center of concentrated U.S. energy investment for years. coming.

build your credit and avoid debt


SPRINGFIELD, Mo. (KY3) — Many college students take the first steps in building their credit by getting that first credit card. While accessing these resources can be exciting, managing them requires discipline and responsibility.

Credit cards can be a good thing. They can help you establish a credit and payment history and make safe online purchases. The trick to using these things to your advantage is good money management.

First, buy a card that suits you. Try to find companies that offer student cards with rewards. Once you’ve been approved, treat the credit card like a debit card and set a budget, and don’t charge more than you can afford.

If you’re making a big purchase with a credit card, try to save some money first. Use the card to make the purchase, then pay for it with the money you’ve saved once you receive the statement. This will help you avoid interest and establish a good credit history. Your first credit card will most likely have a high interest rate. This interest will accrue if you make small payments instead of paying the entire statement.

“As soon as you get a credit card, it shows up on your credit reports,” said Doug Watson, senior counsel at Consumer Credit Counseling. “When you get a new one, you’ll get a high interest rate, probably 20-25% or more. This prevents people from paying them back very quickly because the interest is so high that the payment is higher to actually pay.

Remember that when you use a credit card, you are taking out a loan that must be repaid. To avoid overspending, use the credit card for small purchases like gas or groceries that are already part of your monthly budget. Once you receive this statement, pay it off in full immediately to avoid interest charges. Avoid charging for things like a new wardrobe or a trip until you know you have the money to pay for it.

“I often have people come into my office saying, Well, when I was in college I went crazy with my credit, now I’m paying it off,” Watson said. “We put them on programs to try to pay off $1,000 in debt that students sometimes ran up while in college because they were able to get a few credit cards. They went crazy with them, without thinking about the consequences later or what it really cost them.

Don’t charge more than you can afford to repay. It can be tempting to buy new clothes or book a trip, but if you can’t pay it back, you’ll accrue interest that can be difficult to repay and affect your ability to make future purchases.

“When your credit score goes down, you suddenly have a hard time renting a place because you can’t qualify, you have a hard time getting a car or something else that’s a bigger loan because your credit score is too low, even affecting your buying your first home because your credit score is too low,” Watson said. “All because you mismanaged your credit cards when you were in college.

Every time you apply for a credit card, it does a thorough investigation of your credit report, which lowers your credit score.

To report a correction or typo, please email [email protected]

How To Manage A Credit Card Amid Mental Health Struggles | Economic news


Personal finances often put a strain on mental health. Debts, bills, job security and other similar topics are major sources of stress and anxiety for many people. Problems can also go in the opposite direction: mental health issues can complicate managing personal finances.

Credit cards present a unique challenge. They offer convenience, rewards, consumer protection, and emergency access to purchasing power, making them valuable tools for consumers. But credit cards also allow you to spend money you don’t have and get into debt quite quickly, especially when you feel overwhelmed.

Mental illness does not have to affect a person’s finances. Many people struggling with mental health issues have turned to tools, strategies, and resources to successfully and painlessly manage their credit cards and other aspects of their personal finances.

Control your expenses

Many mental health issues can manifest as overspending — and credit cards make it easier because they let you spend money, even if you don’t have any in the bank.

“At the heart of many mental health issues, we’re dealing with a giant hole that we’re trying to find a way to fill,” says Sarah Swantner, Certified Financial Planner and Licensed Professional Counselor at Black Hills Integrative Counseling & Training in North Dakota. South. “For some people, spending money doesn’t solve the problem, but it provides temporary relief.”

Buying something new or going on an expensive trip, for example, can distract from psychological pain. In the case of addiction, relief can come from substances or gambling. Addiction, in turn, can facilitate irresponsible or irrational spending while under the influence.

Fortunately, you can implement changes that will help control expenses and save time to address underlying mental health issues.

Lock your card

A credit card lock temporarily disables your credit card for purchases, cash advances and balance transfers. You can usually install a lock by logging into your account and making a few selections; the locks take effect immediately.

However, unlocking the card is an equally seamless process, so if you don’t think a card lock is strong enough to curb overspending, you can combine it with other strategies.

Cut access to cash advances

Credit card cash advances can also lead to overspending. They put money in cash without having to make a withdrawal from the bank. Additionally, their anonymity – the credit card statement will show the advance rather than the name of a particular merchant – hides the details of any expenses.

To restrict your access to cash advances, contact the card issuer. Some allow you to disable the feature entirely or reduce the advance limit. Refraining from setting up a PIN with the card issuer is another preventative measure. A PIN is often required to get a cash advance, so if you don’t have one, it will be more difficult to get money that way.

It may also be a good idea to immediately destroy any convenience checks the issuer sends you: cash advances obtained with convenience checks are subject to fees and high annual percentage rates, or APRs. To make sure those checks never even make it to your mailbox, ask your card issuer to stop sending them. For added security, you can opt out of all credit offers by submitting a request to optoutprescreen.com. You can opt out for five years or permanently, but the latter requires written consent.

Seek help from a mental health professional

Credit card solutions, such as card locks, can be implemented while you work to improve your mental health. Contact the Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Administration by visiting their website, samhsa.gov/find-help/national-helpline, to be connected to local resources or contact the National Alliance on Mental Illness. Dial 988 to speak to a trained counselor during a mental health, addiction or suicide crisis.

Face your financial fears

Mental illness is associated with money avoidance behavior, says Ashley Agnew, a Massachusetts-based financial counselor and board member of the Financial Therapy Association. Money avoidance is the tendency to resist thinking about money and making financial decisions. This can manifest itself in postponing or neglecting tasks, such as checking monthly credit card statements and monitoring credit reports.

Avoiding money is not necessarily related to income either. Some people may have enough money to pay the bills, but lack the motivation to take care of their personal finances.

Inaction with credit card accounts has serious consequences. Late payments are reported to the credit bureaus once an account is 30 days past due, lowering your credit score. After 180 days of non-payment, credit card issuers can debit accounts, which means the unpaid debt is sent to a collection agency and the account is closed.

These strategies can help you deal with money avoidance and its negative consequences. Help is also available if your accounts are already in collection or if you are facing bankruptcy.

Put your bills on automatic payment

Morgan Dubie, a freelance web designer from Vermont, experienced bouts of depression as a symptom of bipolar disorder. “When you go into these bouts of depression, you can’t function,” she says. “Credit card bills meant nothing to me because everything meant nothing to me.”

Setting up automatic credit card payment is a way to meet your financial obligations while taking care of your mental health. Automatic payment can be configured as follows:

  • Minimum payout: Paying the minimum may cause a credit card balance to remain, which will earn interest, but at least you’ll avoid late payment charges.
  • Statement balance: Clear your entire monthly bill, as long as you have enough money in the bank account you use to pay the bills. If you are overdrawn, the bank may charge an overdraft fee and you will have emptied your account of funds that may be needed for other expenses.

One thing to note: while autopay can be a useful money-saving solution, it can aggravate a tendency to overspend when you no longer need to log into your credit card account and check your credit card account. your spending history.

Freeze your credit

Some people request another credit card when an account is closed due to missing payments. “I’ve seen clients struggle to the point of having 22 credit cards to deal with their need to access funds instead of dealing with the original debt problem,” Agnew says.

Freezing credit from the three credit bureaus Equifax, TransUnion and Experian can make opening a new credit account a cumbersome task. Any credit card request cannot be approved until you request the freeze to be lifted. To do this, you will need to call the credit bureau or log into your account, and you may need to provide your unique PIN to authorize any requests to unlock your credit.

Work with a credit counselor

The National Credit Counseling Foundation can help you develop lasting solutions to the effects of avoiding money. You can request a debt management plan, which consolidates all credit card debt into one payment, potentially with a lower interest rate. Credit counselors also offer advice on how to deal with debt collectors and bankruptcy. Many of these counseling services are free or low cost.

Prioritize your mental health

Dubie says getting out of credit card debt took time. She used some of the money she earned from freelance gigs to make payments, and she relied on financial apps to track her progress.

“They helped me see that I’m better today than yesterday,” she says. But the most important key to regaining financial stability was taking care of your mental health. “That comes first, otherwise nothing else will work,” says Dubie.

Swantner agrees. By addressing the guilt, shame and fear around money, you can make meaningful and lasting change, she says. Our Mental Health has the power to permeate every corner of our lives, and when we’re faced with multiple financial decisions in a single day, it’s essential to take care of ourselves as we get our financial affairs in order.

Return your script

“Money script” is a term coined by psychologists Brad Klontz and Ted Klontz that refers to a typically unconscious belief about money that is formed during childhood. A product of life experiences and role model messages, money scenarios exert a powerful influence on our daily lives.

For example, if your money script says credit cards are dangerous, you might be ashamed after opening a credit card account and then ignoring alerts or credit statements. Someone else’s money script might convey the belief that credit card debt is better than losing access to money. Credit card bills may not be paid to preserve cash.

By rewriting your money script, it is possible to improve your relationship with credit cards. This process begins with understanding how the money script influences your feelings and behaviors, Swantner says. She also notes that monetary scripts have developed to protect us, although they don’t always make sense. Understanding this is “the difference between condemnation and self-compassion,” she says.

Changing a story you’ve been telling yourself for years might not be easy, but it’s definitely possible. Consider working with a financial therapist, licensed financial advisor, or mental health professional — or maybe all three.

“It’s not a sign of weakness to ask for help and advice,” says Agnew. “It takes a lot of courage to face your finances head-on.”

College students wary of scams this back-to-school season, says BBB


PORTLAND Ore. (KPTV) – With the start of the new school year fast approaching for local universities, the Better Business Bureau (BBB) ​​is warning students about potential scams.

The BBB said there are at least seven scams targeting students trying to obtain their personal information. Makayla Six is ​​a new senior at Portland State University and she understands why scammers are targeting students.

“We’re a little more naive and, we’re less aware of scams, and more desperate for money,” Six said.

Six has never been scammed, but she said it can be easy to fall for it. The BBB said many scams send students emails to their university inbox, with a domain name that looks official.

“I don’t watch anything that isn’t school sent or things that I expected,” Six said. “I think it can counteract part of opening an email and be like it’s about me.”

The BBB said it monitors these six of the seven scams reported to it by students:

  • Fake credit cards – Offers to apply for the first credit card are tempting for many students. Not only could this create credit problems due to uncontrolled spending, but some of the offers could be bogus offers designed to access personal information. Look for offers from credit card and banking institution flyers before applying. Review the BBB tip on credit card scams.
  • Apartments too good to be true – It’s hard not to jump at a convenient apartment so close to campus, especially if it advertises affordable rent. It’s tempting to pass credit card information online to lock down a great spot, but it’s always worth seeing the apartment in person before a money transfer. This also applies to ads on Craigslist and social media appearing to be from other students looking for roommates. Learn more about rental scams.
  • Identity theft – It’s a good idea to start practicing sound financial habits, and one of those habits is to check your credit report regularly for unusual activity and possible identity fraud. The official government website to do this for free is annualcreditreport.com. Read BBB’s article on How to know if someone has stolen your identity.
  • Scholarships and grants scams – Beware of phone calls from companies guaranteeing they can help reduce loan repayments or offer a large grant. Searching the company name online might bring up scam alerts or negative reviews from other consumers. Read reviews and complaints about the company on BBB.org and contact the school’s financial aid office for advice and help with funding your education. Scholarship scams can affect students even after graduation; read our advice on scholarship scams.
  • Online shopping scams – Online shopping scams can be especially effective when set up through social media platforms and apps. BBB has tips for making smart online purchases and a page dedicated to online shopping tips and scam alerts.
  • Awareness of current scams – As tech-savvy as today’s students may be, a surprising number of scams reported to BBB’s ScamTracker come from students who learned their lesson too late. Use BBB Scam Tips to learn about the latest scam trends and read local reports of specific incidents.

The BBB also said there was an employment scam targeting students looking to earn extra money. It works when an email is sent to a student with a job offer and says they are hired immediately. However, they then ask the student to purchase prepaid debit cards and gift cards which would be sent to the employer. In return, they would deposit some of the money into the student’s bank account. But the BBB said it was a bogus offer and the scammer took all the money.

Unfortunately, you can totally fall for a scam, but stay informed, track your searches, and know who is sending you things,” Six said. “It’s the best you can do, isn’t it?” »

You can report a scam by visiting the Federal Trade Commission website by clicking here.

Not your typical dealership: Mississippi’s first Tesla showroom opens to the public

Mississippi’s first Tesla showroom is now open to the public and unlike any ordinary car dealership you’ve ever known.

In a recent interview on MidDays with Gérard GibertLinda Martin, general manager of the new Tesla showroom in Brandon, explained that the process of buying a vehicle at their store is more web-based than at the typical dealership.

“You can’t walk into our property and say, ‘I want this car here and I’ll pick it up today. How our customers work and how the process works if you place an order online you build your custom car. The down payment for this is $250, and we tell our customers to be ready to take delivery of your vehicle next week or six months from now,” Martin said. “By the time they get to us, the funding is done and they’re heading out into the sunset and off our land.”

Martin added that a significant portion of the customers they’ve met have already placed an order on a vehicle without even taking one for a test drive, which is rarely the case in the automotive buying process.

“I would say probably 60 percent of the customers we saw in Mississippi and Louisiana alone placed their order before they came to test drive a vehicle,” Martin said. “So they call us after the fact and say, ‘Hey, I placed my order last week. Is there any way I can come in and have a test drive? And the answer is yes. C It’s as easy as making an appointment online.

Those interested in purchasing a Tesla vehicle or scheduling a test drive at the Brandon location are encouraged to visit the store’s website. According to Martin, there are windows of time available to schedule a test drive.

“We have slots – 30-minute increment slots – all day,” Martin said, adding, “So anyone who wants to can come in and have a test drive.”

Martin’s full interview can be viewed below.

Chesterfield police are looking for a suspect in a central Virginia credit card theft


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CHESTERFIELD COUNTY, Va. (WRIC) – Chesterfield County police are investigating a credit card theft and fraud that occurred in June and are seeking additional information from the public.

Police say a black woman entered the Colonial Heights Library, located at 1000 Yacht Basin Drive, on June 27 at 5 p.m. While at the library, the suspect stole a wallet from a citizen’s bag and then used the cards in the wallet to make purchases in different jurisdictions.

The suspect appeared to be between 20 and 35 years old and between 5ft 5in and 5ft 11in tall. She was last seen wearing a pink t-shirt, black floral skirt and black flip flops. The suspect drove into the library in a silver four-door Ford SUV.

Chesterfield County Police encourage anyone with information that could help solve this crime to call Crime Solvers at 804-748-0660 or use the P3-Tips mobile app. Tips remain anonymous and can receive a cash reward of up to $5,000.

Finnable now offers personal loans with no credit score


Bangalore, Karnataka, India:
Finnable, one of India’s fastest growing financial startups, now offers no credit score loans. An individual can benefit from a Personal loan from Finnable online hassle-free. This comes as a welcome relief for people who have no credit score and are looking to take out a loan. Additionally, applicants can also verify the EMI they should pay each month with Finnable’s personal loan EMI calculator.

For those looking to take advantage of an instant loan with no credit scorethey must take into account the following points:

Ask for a small amount
It is generally recommended to opt for a smaller amount whenn apply for a instant loan. Indeed, the smaller the amount, the more likely it is that lenders will approve it. On the other hand, loan applications for a higher amount may be rejected as lenders look for various aspects that might determine the ability of the applicant to repay it in full.

Apply with a guarantor
Generally, there is no need for a guarantor when applying for an online loan. That said, IIf the person has a low or no credit score, he can avail it from a guarantor. The guarantor can be anyone from the applicant’s parents to siblings or spouse. The only requirement is that the guarantor has a good credit rating.

proof of income
Apart from all this, the applicant will also have to produce proof of income at the time of application. Indeed, if the lender feels that the applicant has a stable income and has the ability to repay the loan on time, the chances of loan approval increase significantly.

  1. The instant loan application process on Finnable is simple and completely online. Here are the steps an applicant needs to follow to qualify for an instant loan:
  2. Individuals can apply for an instant personal loan with no credit score on Finnable’s website or through their personal loan app.
  3. They just need to create an account, register and add professional information such as age, job, etc.
  4. Then, the applicant will have to choose the amount for which he wishes to benefit from a loan. As a final step, upload their identity documents such as PAN card, Aadhaar card, etc. He/she will also need to produce his/her income proof documents, such as payslips and bank statements.

About Finnable

Finnable is one of the fastest growing fintech start-ups helping working professionals get hassle-free loans. Their mission is to make the personal loan accessible to all salaried professionals. They are dedicated to bringing in-depth financial technology expertise to help employees improve their financial situation through tools such as Free credit score tracker, EMI calculator, and much more.

Click here for media contact details

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“Fresh Start”: What Defaulting Student Borrowers Need to Know


(NerdWallet) — When payments resume on federal student loans, borrowers whose loans were previously in default can get a fresh start and resume repayment in good standing.

The “Fresh Start” initiative is available for one year only. Borrowers must register if they want to participate.

The program was first announced on April 6 as part of the sixth extension of the federal student loan payment pause. It wasn’t until August 18 that the details emerged.

A defaulting borrower suffers lasting damage to their credit history. Additionally, they cannot receive other federal aid to return to school, and they face wage garnishment or garnishment of tax refunds and bills for collection costs.

The Fresh Start program removes these penalties if borrowers agree to enter a repayment plan. It does not require a lump sum cash to catch up or a loan consolidation.

How to make a fresh start

Borrowers should opt for Fresh Start, which launches as soon as the student loan payment break expires – currently scheduled for August 31. They must first make payment arrangements with the Ministry of Education’s Default Resolution Group or their loan holders. Once a long-term payment plan has been agreed, the loans will be transferred to a new loan manager.

It is not known how long the process from registration to payment will take.

Borrowers must use one of the following options to enter into Fresh Start payment arrangements:

  • Visit myeddebt.ed.gov
  • Contact their individual loan holder.
  • Call the default resolution group at 1-800-621-3115.

Here’s what else we know about the initiative.

7.5 million borrowers to start from scratch

About 7.5 million borrowers have federal student loans in default, according to federal data. This amount includes overdue loans held by the Ministry of Education and defaulted loans held by guarantee agencies.

Fresh Start is only available to borrowers with federal student loans, including direct loans, government-held FFEL loans, and private FFEL loans. The following loans are not eligible:

  • Private student loans.
  • Perkins loans held by the school.
  • Loans from the Health Education Assistance Loan Program.
  • Loans under the jurisdiction of the United States Department of Justice.
  • Direct loans and FFEL loans held by companies that are in default after the end of the student loan payment pause and the pause on collections.

The fresh start will be reflected on credit reports

The negative default mark on borrowers’ credit reports will be removed as part of the fresh start, according to the Department of Education.

The removal of default on credit reports will only occur after borrowers have made payment arrangements and their loans have been transferred to a new servicer. It’s unclear how long it will take for your report to reflect the default wipe.

The initiative will also:

• Removing the “default” flag will be removed from the Credit Alert Interactive Voice Response System (CAIVRS), which is a federal database of delinquent federal debtors.

• Remove all loans over seven years past due from borrowers’ credit reports.

• Use a loan’s original default date if a borrower defaults again after Fresh Start. This means that a new default will not restart the seven-year delay to appear on a borrower’s credit report (loans past due for more than seven years do not appear on reports).

You can access your credit report for free through the government-authorized site AnnualCreditReport.com. It is also available for free via NerdWallet.

No collection until Fresh Start expires

All collection activities through the Treasury Offsetting Program on Defaulted Federal Student Loans are suspended until the Fresh Start initiative ends. These include wage garnishment, garnished tax refunds and collection costs.

Borrowers who do not take advantage of Fresh Start can expect collection activities and credit reporting to resume once the Fresh Start initiative ends.

Access to refund options and discount is restored

The return to good standing means that borrowers who were in default can now access income-driven repayment plans and work towards forgiveness of public service loans, or PSLFs.

According to the April findings of a New York Federal Reserve survey, borrowers enrolled in an income-driven repayment plan are less likely to have difficulty repaying their debt. Payouts under an income-based plan can be as low as $0.

However, according to the Department of Education, any months spent in default, including during the break, do not count toward PSLF or the income-based refund rebate under current federal regulations.

” MORE: Student loan forgiveness: what’s being fixed?

A second blow for rehabilitated and defaulting borrowers

Usually, there are only three ways out of default: rehabilitation, consolidation, or full loan repayment. But rehabilitation and consolidation are a one-time operation; if you default again, your only option is to repay the entire debt.

New start provides an alternate default path if you’ve used these methods in the past and re-entered default. And under the initiative, any borrower who rehabilitated their loans during the payment pause will also have the option to rehabilitate again if they default again.

Access federal student aid – without enrolling in Fresh Start

One aspect of Fresh Start requires no registration: Schools are advised to allow defaulting borrowers to access federal student aid, which includes federal loans, co-op studies, and Pell grants.

Borrowers in default are less likely to have a university degree. But defaulting on a loan means losing eligibility for federal aid, which can be crucial for college completion. Having access to federal aid again means borrowers could return to school and complete their degree programs.

Don’t expect new defaults for a while

It takes about nine months without payment – 270 days – for an account to default. When payments restart on September 1 as scheduled, no new defaults will reoccur until next year, at the earliest.

” MORE: Are you at risk of default?

If a borrower who agrees to get out of default ends up defaulting again, their quickest solution is student loan rehabilitation. It is a repayment process in which a borrower agrees to make an agreed payment amount nine times in 10 consecutive months.

It is unclear how the Department of Education plans to prevent re-defaults. It is also unclear how the ministry plans to reach all borrowers who had loans in default before the break. In January, a Government Accountability Office report found that 25% of borrowers in default did not have an email address on file with the Department of Education.

” MORE: How the student loan pause went for borrowers

How to Find Extra Student Loan Help

Legitimate student loan assistance organizations will not call, text, or email borrowers with debt resolution offers. Avoid “debt relief” companies that promise immediate forgiveness of student loans. If it sounds too good to be true, it usually is.

Here are some approved student loan assistance resources to consider for information, advice, or both; these are established organizations with verified backgrounds:

Many of these organizations offer advice for free. However, you may have to pay fees, for example with a certified non-profit credit counseling agency or hire a lawyer.

BIL ETF – A cash-like vehicle (NYSEARCA:BIL)

Brastock Images/iStock via Getty Images


We believe that we have yet to see a sellout in the current equity bear cycle. To that end, despite the recent rally, we believe a retail investor should be cautious allocate a substantial portion of their portfolios to cash, other instruments being an extremely poor hedge against stock market volatility and losses, as we have pointed out here and here. We are always looking for good vehicles that can provide market coverage for the composition of a retail investor’s portfolio, but nothing has worked this year except cash. The larger the cash allocation, the better the performance in 2022.

The SPDR Bloomberg Barclays 1-3 Month T-Bill ETF (NYSEARCA:BIL) aims to provide investment results that generally correspond to the price and yield performance of the Bloomberg 1-3 Month US Treasury Bill Index. The ETF is finally a vehicle which invests on the very short part of the Treasury bill curve and thus benefits from a very shortened duration profile and a yield equivalent to the front part of the Treasury bill curve.

The fund has only 14 holdings and an ignorable duration profile:


Assets (Funds)

An investor should think of this ETF in the context of simply rolling treasuries themselves. Due to the small amount of holdings and the short duration, the BIL portfolio represents an approximation for this. The fund only charges 0.1363% in fees and the 30-day SEC yield will increase as yields rise. Either way, a retail investor shouldn’t buy BIL for the yield, but to store money and get something in return. BIL will not make you rich or pay your monthly charges. All of the underlying securities are government-backed AAA holdings, so the fund does not expose the investor to credit risk. Correlated to the very low duration, the fund also virtually eliminates market risk.

BIL should be used for allocating liquidity to an investor’s portfolio. In the current market, we believe the cash pocket should be extremely high, as other traditional instruments have failed to provide cover in 2022 against the equity market decline. We believe the summer rally is just a classic bear market rally followed by more pain, and a savvy retail investor should increase their cash allocation. BIL is a wonderful, risk-free tool for storing your cash in volatile times and keeping your portfolio performing positively in 2022.


The fund is up nearly 0.3% since the start of the year:


Cumulative TR over the current year (Looking for Alpha)

Rather than net performance, which is ignorable, an investor should focus on the total return curve. It has a gently sloping upward curve. Exactly what a vehicle like the silver should show. In comparison, its Goldman cousin, namely GBIL, has been fairly stable since the beginning of the year.

On a 3-year basis, we obtain a similar performance graph:


3-YTR (Looking for Alpha)

Please note that an investor should not expect an outsized gain when purchasing BIL. You get a cash-like vehicle, not a high-yield investment. The concern should be capital preservation with the transfer of a risk-free rate of return. BIL responds to both of these aspects.


Here are the fund’s top holdings as of August 2022:


Assets (fund website)

Essentially, they are short-term Treasuries whose yields reflect the short end of the curve. From a credit risk perspective, they are all AAA and are backed by the full faith and credit of the US Treasury, so they represent risk-free assets. The fund will be rebalanced at the end of each month into an equivalent portfolio weighted by maturity.


The basic construction of the wallet provides for a cash-like bucket. During equity rises, the respective allocation should never exceed 5% of the portfolio and should generally be around 3%. In today’s bear market, we believe investors, based on their risk appetite, should hold a much, much larger portion of their portfolios in cash. BIL is a US T-Bills ETF that has a very short duration and no credit risk. The instrument has a stable net asset value and captures the front end of the US yield curve. We think the summer rally in equities is almost over, and a savvy investor should think proactively about allocating more to funds like BIL in their portfolios.

Electric vehicle drivers are calling for a credit card payment system at charging stations for an easier user experience


Drivers also say more fast-charging stations are needed across the province. BC Hydro says it’s adding more chargers and considering a credit card system.

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In Metro Vancouver, transit riders can easily board the SkyTrain without having to get a ticket or download an app just by tapping their credit card.

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So why can’t the same system be used for electric vehicle charging stations?

Electric vehicle charging stations are not all operated by the same company or government agency in British Columbia and across Canada, which means many drivers end up with multiple apps on their phone to operate different terminals when they travel.

Harry Constantine, president of the Vancouver Electric Vehicle Association, said it would be a much friendlier system to have a credit card option.

“The biggest problem is that each network has its own system,” he said. “You need an app or you need a card and this card does not work with other networks.”

The BC Hydro app also has supports FLO and ChargePoint chargers, but as Constantine points out, many other companies operate charging stations across Canada.

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“In the UK, for example, every charger has to accept payment by credit card, so nationally we have no legislation to dictate how chargers are activated,” he said. .

“Anyone who has an electric vehicle ends up with a dozen apps on their phone.”

Problems arise, he said, when someone runs out of data or their phone dies, or if there’s a service outage like Rogers shut down last month.

BC Hydro said it was studying the feasibility of a credit card system.

“I have been told that the team is currently investigating a credit card payment option, but we are still in the research and evaluation stage. We are also exploring other technology options that may help,” said Simi Heer, spokesperson for BC Hydro.

Overall, Seer said BC Hydro’s charging stations are very reliable — a sentiment echoed by Constantine, who said he hadn’t heard any criticism of BC Hydro’s power plants failing. However, he has heard many complaints about PetroCan chargers not working or not being maintained.

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Suncor, owner of PetroCan charging stations, did not return a request for comment.

Coquitlam resident Stephen Fung is very happy with his electric vehicle and spends a lot of time driving between British Columbia and Alberta with three children in the back seat.

He has about half a dozen apps on his phone for different charging networks and says it can be frustrating to have so many.

What he would like to see is a more universal credit card taking system, but he would also like to see a lot more fast chargers in safe and convenient places to stop – like gas stations, where kids can use the bathroom and they can snack while their car is charging.

His experience is similar to what Constantin heard: chargers from BC Hydro, Flo and Electrify Canada are reliable, while those from PetroCan are not. He says it’s disappointing because PetroCan stations are the best places to stop for everything else.

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“It’s very similar to a lot of places you might see in Norway or Finland, isn’t it? This is the ideal setup. The problem is reliability,” Fung said, adding that often gas station attendants are unwilling to troubleshoot when chargers are not working.

Jason Humeniuk, who drives an Audi e-tron in Surrey, had a similar response to Fung. He said BC Hydro’s chargers are reliable, but there need to be much faster chargers so drivers don’t have to wait an hour or more to charge their vehicle. He said when traveling to Edmonton from the Lower Mainland, EV drivers should allow an hour or more to charge their vehicles.

“It’s even worse once you get north of Calgary,” he said. “It’s almost impossible to find a fast charger.”

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Driving inland is a good experience now with more chargers in Hope and Merritt, Humeniuk said, but it doesn’t compare to the electric vehicle network on the Interstate 5 highway in the United States, which he described. as “fantastic”.

“They have so many charging stations, so if you go down to California, or anywhere on I-5, there’s no problem and you can hit a lot of them,” said Humeniuk.

He also said that there seems to be a problem with PetroCan’s card reading system in British Columbia, so you have to rely on the app, and if there was a cell failure, there could be have a problem.

Over the past year, BC Hydro said most fast-charging stations were operational about 98% of the time.

“In most situations, when a charger fails, it’s because of cable replacements due to damage from the public,” Heer said.

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“There have been rare situations involving cellular communications issues, power module replacements, or circuit breaker trips. During the fall and winter, we experienced downtime on some sites due to weather-related power outages.”

To address this issue, BC Hydro, which currently has 114 chargers at 78 sites, is adding more chargers to single-charger sites. The plan is to add 324 units at 145 sites over a five-year period.

From June 2021 to June this year, BC Hydro received an average of 750 support calls per month for EV stations, with the most common issues being drivers needing help activating stations and troubleshooting.

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Environment, social and governance are a wolf in the sheep


ESG seems like an optimistic option to protect the base level, but a closer look reveals a more sinister path to totalitarianism.

This is an opinion piece. Macro Jack is a Bitcoiner with a background in conventional money providers that spans funding analysis, investor relations, and business growth.

The environment, social and governance (ESG) is a strategy for evaluating companies or countries based mainly on their compliance with these three elements. ESG, which has gained recognition in recent times, has become a globally adopted capital allocation framework and objective. The idea sounds innocent on paper, because most people are good and want to advance environmental or social issues. If we do it with investments, even more. Nonetheless, offering a financial reward to ESG followers also brings a whole new set of incentives that probably haven’t been fully explored by the funder community.

There is more than meets the attention. The ESG analysis process is bigoted, opaque and centralized, leaving vital room for corruption. It’s also doubtful that one of the main advocates of ESG is BlackRock CEO Larry Fink. BlackRock is the world’s largest asset supervisor, managing more than $10 trillion, and Mr. Fink’s lifestyle reflects that. He likes to fly privately to Davos, stress-free at his Aspen mansion, and tell you to reduce your carbon footprint.

Digging deeper into the ESG reveals a more sinister plan. While we wish to be good stewards of the planet, we briefly learn that the globalists’ proposal to act is somehow disturbing and also illegitimate. ESG is an important part of the agenda to consolidate capital and centrally plan source allocation, destroying remnants of the free market as part of. Let’s dig a little deeper.

ESG is more than an investment evaluation strategy; It is a social credit system like the one that existed under the Chinese communist administration. Much like a credit score, which determines whether or not a person is eligible for a credit score based on their means of paying old debt, a social credit score system is a more invasive assessment and not only determines the access to monetary services, but in addition, public providers are reminiscent of public transport or grocery stores. . For example, China’s social credit score system attempts to compile numerical information about residents’ social and monetary behavior to calculate a private ranking that determines which providers they qualify for. According to the Wall Avenue Journal, the official social credit score system in Chinese includes mortgage compensation, bank card payments, meeting visitor guidelines, meeting household planning limits, and “credibility” of information. published or republished online, among others. different elements. In addition to official entries, the Social Credit Score contains political opposition, private values, and online dialogue in each person’s rating. Beliefs, political opinions and conduct online determine their means of accessing access providers such as insurance and banking, college admissions, web services, social services and eligibility for employment.

Lawmakers Propose Change to Homeowner Credit Checks | News, Sports, Jobs


D-Valley Stream Congresswoman Michaelle Solages is pictured during the recent opening of the new Long Island Rail Road extension.

A Long Island lawmaker wants to limit what can be considered a landlord’s credit check when considering new tenants.

Deputy Michaelle Solages, D-Valley Stream, wants to prohibit landlords from refusing to rent or rent a property to a potential tenant based on the tenant’s credit score or consumer credit history as long as the tenant can fulfill one of the conditions. Owners who break the law would be liable for a civil judgment between $500 and $1,000.

“As New Yorkers continue to struggle with the effects of the COVID-19 pandemic, finding and maintaining affordable housing has been a difficult challenge. A low credit score, perhaps due to the difficulties of the pandemic, is a barrier for many tenants to access new housing,” Solages wrote in his legislative rationale.

Solages wrote that the number of tenants in arrears had doubled between 2017 and 2021. In 2021, the amount of tenants in debt increased from 12% in May to 21% in June, an increase of 9% in one month. She pointed to medical debt and credit card debt as issues for many renters, especially black and Hispanic families.

A. 10676 would prohibit denying a tenant based on a credit check if a tenant could prove that they had made full payment of rent within five days of the due date for one year prior to submission of rent. a rental request. Credit checks would also not be a reason to turn a tenant away if the tenant’s rent is paid through a government grant given directly to the landlord, if the tenant’s credit history shows defaults or collections due solely to medical or student debt, or if credit problems are the result of domestic violence, dating violence, sexual assault, or harassment.

Landlords who refuse a tenant based on their history or credit score would be required to notify the potential tenant in writing and give the applicant tenant the opportunity to show that they meet one of the conditions for triggering the invoice.

“With so many marginalized communities struggling to make ends meet during unprecedented times, a poor credit score is not uncommon and is not a clear indicator of a potential tenant’s financial health. Instead, credit checks that prevent potential tenants from accessing housing, especially affordable housing, only serve as an obstacle to a basic human right,” writes Solages.

A similar bill had been proposed in California by Congresswoman Sharon Quirk-Silva, D-Fullerton. This bill would have prohibited landlords from asking questions about anything included in a report, such as payment history or evictions. The legislation faced opposition from the California Apartment Association and was withdrawn from consideration earlier this year.

The association wrote that credit reports are used for home loans, car loans, bank loans, utilities, cell phone providers and credit card providers to qualify individuals for services or a funding.

“The analysis of a credit report is not about determining whether a person has a high income or a low income”, Debra Carlson, CAA’s executive vice president of public affairs and compliance, wrote in a letter to Quirk-Silva. “It shows how an individual has managed their debt in the past. It demonstrates the level of risk the individual poses to a borrower or rental property owner. If a person is accustomed to making payments on time and managing debt responsibly, they are likely to have good credit. A rental landlord must rely on rent money to pay for their own mortgage, insurance, taxes, maintenance, etc., and many small landlords rely on rental payments as part of their retirement income. You are putting these landlords at risk with AB 2527. With the COVID-19 pandemic, the past two years have been extremely difficult, and AB 2527 will serve as the final “straw” for many landlords to get their rental units off the market. .”

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Why Every Republican Should Support Ukraine

With Republicans almost inevitably poised to take control of the House of Representatives in November – and possibly the Senate as well – they will have a much greater influence on US policy toward Ukraine. The GOP’s initial enthusiasm for supporting Kyiv has, however, taken on an increasingly isolationist slant since May.

One can’t help but ask, “What’s in it for the Republicans if they win all of Congress and lose their own (ideological) soul?”

In mid-May, the House voted 368 to 57 and the Senate 86 to 11 to give Ukraine $40 billion in lethal and humanitarian aid. About $9 billion was simply for resupplying US military hardware such as Javelins and Stingers previously sent to Ukraine. In other words, $9 billion worth of contracts with the traditionally Republican American defense industry, with national security being the ultimate beneficiary.

Some Republicans have cited President Volodymyr Zelensky’s corruption in Ukraine as a reason for not supporting them in the war.
Photo by DIMITAR DILKOFF/AFP via Getty Images

It’s not every day that Republicans vote for a bill that 1) strengthens American security, 2) benefits the defense industry, and 3) weakens Russia. Yet all of the “No” votes came from the GOP. While Republicans in favor outnumbered those against by 3-1, it’s worth responding to the latter’s growing arguments against aid to Ukraine.

It’s expensive. After numerous attempts by the Biden administration to push huge spending bills through Congress, questions about the award are normal. But fake stories of more than $40 billion aimed at long-standing US foreign policy goals are disingenuous, especially with the annual US defense budget at nearly $800 billion.

Milton Bearden, head of the CIA’s Afghan station in the 1980s, estimated that it cost America $13 trillion to win the Cold War. Spending $40 billion to watch “Russia weaken to the point that it can’t do the kinds of things it did by invading Ukraine”, according to Defense Secretary Lloyd Austin, is a saving exceptional cost and investment in our national security. Or, to quote Senate GOP Leader Mitch McConnell, “Anyone worried about the cost of supporting a Ukrainian victory should consider the much greater cost if Ukraine lost.”

A building destroyed by a Russian rocket near Kharkiv, Ukraine, August 18, 2022.
A building destroyed by a Russian rocket near Kharkiv, Ukraine, August 18, 2022.
Photo by VASILIY ZHLOBSKY/EPA-EFE/Shutterstock

This money could build the wall. If the president were a Republican, building a wall with Mexico might be possible. But now we can build a wall with Russia, and the Germans will pay for it. It was Germany’s thirst for cheap energy via Nord Stream 2 that helped spark the Russian invasion, and as talks of post-Ukraine reconstruction begin, the Germans are likely to pay a substantial part of the bills. . Germany is the leading financial power in the European Union, and the EU will play a leading role there.

Ukraine is corrupt. The Zelensky government came to power in 2019 on a wave of change because Ukrainians were tired of the crooked regimes of the past. Almost immediately, the administration took a positive step towards eliminating corruption by removing immunity from prosecution for MPs.

Much remains to be done, and time will tell if Zelensky’s team is making serious efforts to transform Ukrainian society towards transparency and free markets. Give the administration time while making the new GOP Congress a watchdog of Ukrainian corruption rather than a watchdog of Russian rhetoric.

Biden is for – therefore I am against. Opposing anything the president proposes is a centuries-old Washington tradition, and Democrats are guilty of the transgression under Republican presidents as well. The sensational stories about Hunter Biden and his work with Ukrainian gas company Burisma are not about this Ukrainian administration.

But there are plenty of honest opportunities to criticize the president here: he’s sending slow weapons to Ukraine, which would end the war faster and mean fewer Ukrainian deaths. The same Biden national security adviser, Jake Sullivan, who wrote the Afghanistan debacle last summer, is now a bottleneck in supplying Ukraine with increasingly deadly weapons. Speeches can be made, inquiries made, hearings held. The soul of the GOP rests in peace through strength, not cowardice and complacency against an evil empire.

The real question every Republican needs to ask is “Which side of history do I want to be on?” On the side of a Judeo-Christian country which fights for its survival simply because it wants to be part of the West? Or stand on the fringes of history as a tyrannical regime targets civilians, systematically promotes the rape of women, and attempts to genocide an entire nation?

Some Republicans, unfortunately, have taken the position that Ukraine should simply surrender and accept a peace imposed by the aggressor. Ronald Reagan never believed in such nonsense and addressed such hesitation in his 1964 “Time to Choose” speech: “We can’t buy our security, our freedom,” he said, ” by committing an immorality as great as saying to a billion enslaved human beings behind the iron curtain, “Give up your dreams of freedom because to save our own skins we are willing to make a deal with your slave masters “.

What was true then remains true today, and the aggressor remains the same. In January, the GOP will hold the fiscal strings of US policy toward Ukraine. The question remains: will the GOP keep or lose its own soul?

Brian Mefford is director of Wooden Horse Strategies, LLC, a government relations and strategic communications firm in Kyiv. He is a Nonresident Senior Fellow at the Atlantic Council and has lived and worked in Ukraine since 1999.

5 easy ways to boost your CIBIL score and get ready for credit this year


Lenders and rating agencies often offer a free credit check or CIBIL score. Free services like these make it easy to monitor changes in your credit score and make the right decisions to strengthen your credit profile, especially if you plan to rely on credit for your future goals. To improve your credit score and thus your creditworthiness, you need to understand what factors contribute to it. Credit rating agencies calculate your score based on various factors such as your repayment history, credit dependence, and exposure to different types of credit.

Your credit score is how lenders and credit card issuers understand your financial situation and assess whether or not you’re likely to repay credit on time. Generally, a CIBIL score closer to 900 allows you to easily obtain new affordable credit. For example, it is more difficult and may be more expensive for you to obtain a personal loan for a CIBIL score of 550 compared to a score of 750 or more. To easily get affordable credit, maintaining a credit score above 750 is a smart way to go. Here are some tips that can boost your credit rating and qualify you for great offers.

Reimburse contributions when due

Missing your credit card bill payments or loan EMIs can lower your credit score. The best way to meet repayment deadlines is to plan your loan and credit card payments carefully before you spend. By developing a budget, you can ensure that you have the necessary funds to meet your credit obligations in a timely manner. Remember that paying only the minimum dues on your credit card is also not good for your credit profile. Always pay your credit card bills in full. In case you have too much debt, you can also consolidate your loans and repay a single loan to increase your credit score.

Have experience with a good credit mix

Have you only taken out unsecured loans in your lifetime as a borrower? This is another reason for a low credit score. You can improve this by taking out a secured loan such as a two-wheeler or car loan. Knowing the different types of loans not only gives you credit experience, but also helps boost your CIBIL score. Since most secured loans come with a longer repayment window and most unsecured loans come with a shorter window, you can easily manage repayment with smart planning.

Track your credit usage

Credit usage refers to the extent to which you rely on credit in your daily life. Your credit utilization rate is calculated by dividing the total amount of credit you are currently using through credit cards by the total credit limit. A low ratio means that you have used your credit card wisely and are not greedy for credit. When you use your credit cards up to their limit each month, your credit utilization rate increases. This is a red flag and drops your CIBIL score as it shows that you may be too dependent on credit. It’s best to keep your credit utilization rate at 30% to improve your credit score.

Guarantee an error-free credit file

Your credit report contains details about your profile, such as your credit history, personal information, and account information, and is the basis on which your credit score is calculated. Checking your credit score and report regularly is the best way to keep an eye on these factors. Sometimes your score may be low due to an error in your report. This may be due to a lender not closing your repaid loan account or credit card fraud. By noticing these mistakes and raising a dispute to correct the discrepancies, you can boost your credit score.

Remember that establishing the ideal credit score takes time. By adopting the habits mentioned above on a regular and disciplined basis, you can boost your credit score. To conduct a CIBIL score check, free services are available on the official website only once a year. This may not be ideal, as you may want to check your score and report it more often.

Apart from using the official website for a CIBIL score check, free credit score check services are also made available by some lenders. Bajaj Finserv, among the best NBFC in India, offers you CIBIL score check for free at your convenience. Check the CIBIL score today and take the right steps to improve your creditworthiness so you can be ready this year.

Debt consolidation becomes more attractive – InsuranceNewsNet


There’s never a good time to have a lot of personal debt, but now would be one of the worst times.

Americans are increasingly relying on credit cards for everyday purchases and paying bills. Credit card balances jumped 13% last quarter from the same quarter in 2021, the biggest jump in more than 20 years, according to data from the New York Federal Reserve.

Since March, the Federal Reserve raised interest rates by a cumulative 225 basis points, or 2.25%. This has helped drive average credit card interest rates to nearly 18%, an all-time high since CreditCards.com began tracking it in 2007. A similar trend is occurring with personal loans, mortgages and other forms of credit.

High interest rates make credit card and debt consolidation programs attractive avenues for consumers, said Bruce McClarySenior Vice President Membership and Communications National Credit Counseling Foundation.

These programs often advertise lower interest rates for combining all your debts and paying them off in one loan, but there’s more under the surface.

What are the disadvantages of consolidation?

Many lenders can offer borrowers lower interest rates on debt consolidation loans because they have longer terms. This could end up costing you more than if you didn’t go the debt consolidation route.

Debt consolidation companies may also charge additional fees such as a one-time loan origination fee and require you to pay a higher interest rate if you do not opt ​​into automatic payment.

“This additional cost over time on interest and fees could reduce your ability to build your safety net or save for a secure retirement,” McClary said. “So you don’t want to sacrifice your future for the present.”

Above all, debt consolidation is not “a silver bullet”, said Ismat Mangla, executive director of MagnifyMoney, a site that provides personal finance advice. The site belongs to LendingTree, an online lending marketplace.

While debt consolidation may ease some of your headaches now, if you don’t change any of the financial habits that got you into debt in the first place, you’ll just dig yourself a deeper hole, Mangla said.

She recommends contacting a nonprofit credit counseling agency like NFCC to discuss whether to consolidate your debt. They can also help you set up a debt management plan where you make a monthly lump sum payment to the nonprofit that makes payments to your creditors for you. In some cases, they are also able to negotiate lower fees and interest rates.

You can also contact your creditors and ask for a lower interest rate or terms that will make it easier to pay off the debt.

The savings you make can save you from having to take out a debt consolidation loan.

Does debt consolidation hurt your credit rating?

Debt consolidation does not inherently harm your credit score.

But if you apply for a debt consolidation loan (or any other type of loan), the lender must perform a “hard” credit check, which is recorded on your credit file. If you have a good credit rating, the inquiry should have a negligible impact on your rating. But if you have a bad credit score or have recently had several serious credit applications, your credit score could temporarily drop by up to 10 points.

It is important to research the rates before submitting an application. McClary recommends comparing rates and terms on sites such as NerdWallet Where The bank rate.

If you don’t make your minimum payment on time, your credit score will drop.

Is this a good idea? Who is eligible?

The answer largely depends on an individual’s credit score.

McClary said debt consolidation ads will often say, “‘you can get an interest rate as low as x’, but that interest rate may only be available to people with the best credit scores. “.

Typically, you’ll need a FICO credit score that’s in the mid-600s, according to The bank rate. In addition to credit scores, lenders also consider your income and other financial criteria.

Some lenders don’t specify a minimum credit score, but if you have a credit score below 600, you’re less likely to be approved. Or if you are approved, the interest rate the lender offers you will be higher than the advertised rate and they may not offer as large a loan as you need.

On the other hand, if your FICO credit score is 670 or higher, consider applying for a signature loan — an unsecured personal loan that likely has a better interest rate, McClary said.

What does debt consolidation mean?

Debt consolidation consists of taking out a new loan to repay several types of debt. It could also be used to pay off debt you have with multiple credit cards, also known as credit consolidation.

If approved, the lender will deposit the money directly into your bank account hoping that you will use it to pay off the debts you are consolidating or the lender will pay the balances for you.

Above all, it does not mean that you are debt free. You will be responsible for making a one-time, usually fixed, monthly payment to the lender.

WEDI submits letter to CMS over virtual credit card issues


The use of VCCs, which are designed to reduce the potential for fraud, can pose problems for healthcare providers, the organization says.

The Electronic Data Interchange Task Force warns that the use of virtual credit cards by healthcare payers to make payments to providers, while mitigating some fraud issues, can cause problems for providers who are out of a plan’s network or use other means to settle claims.

WEDI, an organization that addresses emerging health information technology issues related to information exchange, raised concerns in a recent commentary. letter (registration required) submitted to the Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services.

CMS, which oversees the operations of federal health insurance programs, recently sought advice on two issues. A (GL-2022-04) covers the payment of health plan claims using virtual credit cards and has adopted HIPAA standards for electronic funds transfers and remittance advice transactions. The other (GL-2022-03) relates to the responsibility of HIPAA-covered entities to ensure that business associates comply with HIPAA.

Virtual credit cards, designed for one-time use, hide the actual card number. Card issuers typically provide software that helps a customer generate a temporary credit card number, linked to their permanent number, to enhance security and help prevent fraud.

In its comments, WEDI asks CMS for more clarification on specific topics surrounding virtual credit cards and electronic funds transfers. She asks CMS to provide information on the security of electronic payments compared to paper checks.

“VCC payments may not be more secure than EFT payments made through the ACH network (the ACH Automated National Clearinghouse for Electronic Funds Transfers), but this type of payment reduces credit card fraud” , notes WEDI.

Some providers are reluctant to adopt EFT payments “because they are not comfortable using portals (or other mechanisms) to reveal their banking information,” WEDI says. And more work needs to be done to ensure that certain standards created by ANSI X12 can work well with virtual credit card payments.

Electronic funds transfer and electronic remittance advice issues can also arise if an out-of-network provider does not complete a health plan’s EFT and ERA enrollment process. According to WEDI, CMS needs to provide more clarity on how out-of-network providers can receive electronic payments, particularly where registration for electronic payment processes has not been completed.

WEDI’s letter, which discusses these and other concerns with CMS on these guidance topics, can be found here.

How do I get an SBA self-employed loan? – Forbes Advisor


Editorial Note: We earn a commission on partner links on Forbes Advisor. Commissions do not affect the opinions or ratings of our editors.

If you are self-employed and need financial assistance, you may qualify for a loan from the US Small Business Administration (SBA). These loans can provide much-needed funds at competitive interest rates, but you’ll need to meet eligibility criteria set by the SBA and its network of individual lenders.

Who qualifies as self-employed?

The IRS defines someone as self-employed if they are a sole proprietor or an independent contractor carrying on a trade or business. Likewise, a member of a partnership or someone who is otherwise in business for themselves is considered self-employed under IRS guidelines. This also includes part-time businesses. Since LLC members are generally taxed as sole proprietors, LLC owners are also considered self-employed.

Although the SBA does not define the term self-employed, it restricts its loan programs to small businesses. What constitutes a small business is an industry-specific determination, but small businesses generally must have fewer than 1,500 employees.

SBA loans available for the self-employed

Eligible self-employed people can benefit from several types of SBA loans. In general, SBA loan rates are competitive and come with lower down payments than other business loans. Some of the more popular options include:

SBA microloans

SBA microloans are available through a nationwide network of government-backed nonprofit lending organizations. Microloans can be used for a variety of purposes aimed at rebuilding, reopening, repairing, improving or improving a small business. Approved expenditures include working capital, inventory or supplies, furniture, fixtures, machinery and equipment.

The maximum amount you can borrow through an SBA microloan is $50,000 and the maximum repayment period is six years. SBA microloan interest rates range from 8% to 13% as of August 2022.

Since the microcredit program is administered by a network of intermediary lenders, eligibility requirements vary. In general, however, business owner applicants must provide security and personally guarantee the loan in addition to demonstrating their qualifications.

SBA 7(a) Small Loans

The SBA 7(a) loan program is the SBA’s flagship and most popular loan program. Funds are available up to $5 million and can be used for a variety of purposes, including working capital, purchasing equipment, and business expansion costs. Business owners can even use the proceeds to finance the purchase of real estate.

The interest rate on an SBA 7(a) loan is pegged to a base rate (prime, LIBOR, or an optional anchor rate) plus 2.25% to 4.75%, depending on the amount and term of the loan. ready. Loan terms extend up to 15 years for real estate and 10 years for equipment, working capital and inventory loans.

Eligible borrowers must operate for profit in the United States or its territories and demonstrate that they have reasonable equity to invest. As with other SBA loans, it is also necessary to use other sources of funding (such as personal assets) before applying for the government guaranteed loan.

SBA Express Loans

SBA Express loans fall under the 7(a) program and are available for up to $500,000, with a maximum SBA guarantee of 50%. Interest rates are ultimately negotiated by individual lenders and borrowers, but cannot exceed the SBA maximum prime rate plus 6.5%. Repayment periods extend up to seven years for lines of credit, 25 years for real estate and 10 years for other loans.

Express Loans are a great choice for self-employed applicants who need quick access to cash, as the SBA responds to Express Loan requests within 36 hours of receiving them. This is significantly faster than the five to 10 business days it takes for small 7(a) loans.

Credit and eligibility decisions are made by individual lenders, so requirements vary. However, borrowers must meet the lender’s credit rating, minimum time in business, and annual income requirements.

How to apply for an SBA loan as a freelancer

The process for applying for an SBA loan as a self-employed person varies by loan program and individual lender. However, there are some general steps to follow when applying for an SBA loan:

  1. Check your credit score. Before applying for an SBA loan, check your personal FICO score and review a credit report from at least one of the major credit bureaus – Equifax, Experian, and TransUnion. SBA loans generally require a credit score of at least 680, but lenders impose their own requirements. Understanding your credit profile can help you gauge your chances of approval and give you a chance to improve your score before you submit an application.
  2. Write a business plan. To qualify for a business loan, you will need to create a business plan that demonstrates how your business makes money and how it will use the loan proceeds. This is especially important if you have been in business for less than two years.
  3. Determine the type of SBA loan you need. Visit the SBA website to view available loan programs. Choose an option with a borrowing limit and approval time that suits your needs. Also review any program-specific requirements to make sure you qualify.
  4. Select a lending partner. Enter your postal code on the SBA Lender Match tool to locate a lender in your area. Familiarize yourself with the lending partner’s credit and income requirements and the application process to confirm your eligibility.
  5. Identify sufficient safeguards. Depending on the SBA program and the lender, collateral may be required to secure the loan. Compare lenders and programs to determine collateral requirements and consider these when choosing a loan offer.
  6. Gather the necessary documentation. The SBA loan application process varies by lender, but applicants are generally required to provide documents such as tax returns, business financial statements, projections, and outstanding debts. Streamline the process by compiling these documents before submitting an application.
  7. Submit an application. Once you have identified an SBA lending partner and lending program, submit a formal application. A loan officer will contact you by phone or email if additional information or documentation is needed. Keep an eye on these communications to avoid delays in loan processing and approval.

Ways to Use SBA Loan Funds

There are several ways to use SBA loan funds to help your business, but permitted uses may be restricted by the specific loan program. Some common uses of SBA loans include:

  • Purchase of inventory or equipment
  • Pay for renovations or repairs
  • Hiring new employees
  • Pay marketing or advertising costs
  • Develop your business operations
  • Buy a new commercial space

Are SBA loans hard to get?

It’s not difficult to qualify for an SBA loan, but the application, approval, and funding processes can be lengthy. This means that self-employed business owners who need quick access to cash may be best served by an online loan, business credit card, or other alternative.

Eligibility criteria

SBA lending requirements vary by lending program and individual SBA-approved lenders. However, the SBA imposes some basic eligibility guidelines that all applicants must meet as part of the application process. For example, a company must demonstrate that it is able to repay its loan.

Here are the basic eligibility requirements for a business to obtain an SBA loan:

  • Must operate for profit in the United States or one of its territories
  • The owner must have already committed their time and money to the business
  • Must have exhausted all other financing options

Alternatives to SBA Loans

If you are not approved for a loan, you may still be able to obtain financing from other sources. SBA loan alternatives often come with higher interest rates or less favorable terms, but they may be easier to obtain.

Consider these options if an SBA loan isn’t right for your business.

Online loans

Independent business owners can use some personal loans to cover start-up or operating expenses or apply for business loans. Although these loans are available from banks and lenders, it can be difficult to qualify with a traditional financial institution, and the rates and terms are often less competitive than with online options.

Expect to pay between 4% and 36% annual percentage rate (APR) for an online personal loan with terms up to seven years. As always, compare personal loans and the best small business loans before deciding on one and prequalify if possible.

Business credit cards

Business credit cards are easier to obtain than SBA loans and offer much faster approval speeds, with consumers often receiving a same-day or even immediate decision. This approach to business financing can also help you build your credit history and make it easier to get approved for future loans.

Although credit cards can be a convenient way to pay for small expenses, they usually have high interest rates (around 9% to 27%), so look for one that offers a 0% introductory period. .

Personal savings

If you have money in a savings account, consider using some of it to fund your business. We don’t recommend taking money out of retirement accounts or emergency funds, but using cash can be a good option if you don’t have good credit or have trouble getting loan approval.

Equity financing

Independent business owners who need access to large sums of money can also opt for equity financing. It involves selling part of your business in exchange for funding. However, this option can be risky as it may involve handing over the decision-making to someone outside of your organization. For this reason, it should only be considered as a last resort, and you should always have a business attorney review the terms of the agreement.

Find the best small business loans of 2022

How to remove Americollect from your credit report


If you’re reading this, you’ve probably seen the name Americollect appear on your credit report or heard it in a voicemail. When you forget or cannot afford to pay a medical bill, healthcare facilities may send your outstanding balance to a debt collection agency, such as Americollect. Americollect will not only phone you multiple times and send you letters, but they’ll also likely place a collection account on your credit report, which can hurt your credit score for up to seven years.

You can cancel your debt by paying the amount you owe, but it won’t improve your credit score. To remove Americollect from your credit report, you will need to dispute the debt or negotiate a payment-for-deletion agreement.

What is Americollect?

Chances are you’ve never heard of Americollect until you see the name on your credit report. It’s really not a household name. However, it is a legitimate debt collection agency that specializes in medical debt collection, handling overdue accounts for healthcare providers since 1964.

Based in Manitowoc, Wis., Americollect bills itself as “the ridiculously cool collection agency.” If this pledge of cordiality is remarkable for a debt collection service, its agents have only one goal: to make you repay your medical debt.

When you make a payment, Americollect benefits. This article will tell you how you can use this fact as leverage.

3 Ways to Remove Americollect from Your Credit Report

Unpaid medical debt shouldn’t haunt you year after year. They limit your borrowing power and prevent you from achieving your financial goals. You can use these three strategies to remove a collection agency from your credit report.

  • Send Americollect a Debt Validation Letter
  • Negotiate a payment-for-deletion agreement
  • Hire a credit repair company

1. Send Americollect a debt validation letter

Since most agencies are third-party debt collectors and not the original creditor, the debts recorded are not always 100% accurate. The Fair Debt Collection Practices Act (FDCPA requires debt collectors to show proof of the debt they claim you owe – if you request validation within 30 days of your first contact with the debt collector. Using a debt validation letter template, you may be able to have a collection entry removed from your credit report without paying a dime.

If they can’t validate your debt, you can file a claim to have the agency remove the account from your credit report. You can also submit a request to have the company stop contacting you. Whether you have unpaid medical bills or got on Americollect’s radar by mistake, always ask for debt validation first.

Try to act quickly and send a debt validation letter as soon as you notice Americollect on your report or the first time they call you. If you don’t send the letter within the first 30 days, you are effectively conceding the debt.

2. Negotiate a payment-for-deletion agreement

If Americollect has been harassing you for more than a month, or if the agency has already validated your debt, the next step is to see if you can negotiate a payment for deletion agreement. As mentioned earlier, simply paying off the debt will not help your credit score. But you can ask Americollect to delete negative credit information in exchange for your payment. Remember that debt collectors make money when you pay off a debt.

Since you are offering a plan to pay off the balance owing, this may motivate Americollect to consider your terms. You could even negotiate to pay a fraction of the balance owing in exchange for a guarantee that Americollect removes the negative entry from your credit report. But if you want a waiver payment agreement to work, you need to get a written agreement before you pay anything.

When arranging payment, submit a cashier’s check or money order, if possible. This way, you won’t divulge sensitive information like your bank account or credit card number to the debt collector. Once you have paid the agreed amount, Americollect will remove the negative entry from your credit file within one month. If your report is the same after 30 days, send a follow-up letter, including a copy of the payment contract for deletion, to Americollect reminding them of the agreement.

3. Hire a credit repair company

Dealing with debt collectors is stressful and dealing with agencies like Americollect is time consuming and frustrating. This is especially true when you’re in a discussion with a health insurance company about a medical debt, which likely means you’ve been sick. Sudden illnesses like COVID-19 or chronic illnesses that change your lifestyle can generate huge debt. If you don’t have the time or energy to negotiate with Americollect, you can hire a credit repair company In place.

Credit repair companies negotiate on your behalf and usually charge monthly or upfront setup fees. In exchange, the credit repair company strives to get your credit history back on track quickly and efficiently, even if your situation is complex.

How does Americollect work?

If Americollect or another debt collection agency contacts you, your medical provider has engaged the agency to collect a debt on their behalf. In some cases, the vendor sells your debt to the collection agency. The agency has the right to contact you and request reimbursement, using the information available on file with your health care provider.

In addition to collection calls and letters, Americollect also reports your debt to one or more credit bureaus, resulting in a collection entry on your credit report. This type of entry lowers your credit score and affects it for seven years, with the damage slowly fading after the first three years. See the steps above on how to remove Americollect from your credit history, but when Americollect contacts you, know that it’s not a scam and that having a collection account in your credit history hurts your good. – be financial.

Doing business with Americollect

Americollect follows strict federal laws. While fewer people have filed complaints against Americollect than other agencies, between the Better Business Bureau, the Consumer Financial Protection Bureau, and the Federal Trade Commission, there are several hundred complaints against it.

The Americollect office address is:

  • 1851 S. Alverno Road
  • Manitowoc, WI 54220

Its main mailing address is:

  • Americollect, Inc.
  • Box 1566
  • Manitowoc, WI 54221

Americollect Complaints

Consumer complaints typically include:

  • Inaccurate reporting of debts to the three credit reporting agencies
  • Failure to validate debt upon request
  • Contacting customers via inappropriate phone numbers

These problems often persist because customers are unaware of their rights under the FDCPA. If you believe Americollect has violated your consumer rights, you may file a complaint with the Federal Trade Commission. You can also consult local law firms that specialize in debt collection.


This federal law limits the hours that Americollect can contact you and prohibits them from coercing you into making a payment. One of the best benefits of the FDCPA is that it allows you to completely block Americollect from calling. You also have the right to inform debt collectors of your preference to communicate by mail rather than by telephone.

Keep in mind that stopping collection calls will not eliminate the debt. You still need to fix the problem. Also, putting everything in writing is a wise decision. It ensures that the agency tracks and removes the collection entry from your credit report when you reach an agreement.

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Irreversible declines in freshwater storage predicted in parts of Asia by 2060

The Tibetan Plateau, known as the “water tower” of Asia, provides fresh water to nearly two billion people who live downstream. New research by scientists from Penn State, Tsinghua University and the University of Texas at Austin predicts that climate change, under a weak climate policy scenario, will cause an irreversible decline in freshwater storage in region, constituting a total water supply collapse for Central Asia and Afghanistan and a near total collapse for northern India, Kashmir and Pakistan by mid-century.

“The prognosis is not good,” said Michael Mann, Distinguished Professor of Atmospheric Sciences, Penn State. “In a ‘business as usual’ scenario, where we fail to significantly reduce the burning of fossil fuels in the coming decades, we can expect a near collapse – that is, a nearly 100% loss – of water availability in the downstream regions of the Tibet Plateau. I was surprised at the magnitude of the predicted decline, even under a modest climate policy scenario.”

According to the researchers, despite its importance, the impacts of climate change on past and future terrestrial water storage (TWS) – which includes all groundwater and groundwater – in the Tibetan Plateau have been largely under-explored.

“The Tibetan Plateau provides a substantial share of the water demand of nearly two billion people,” said Di Long, an associate professor of hydrological engineering at Tsinghua University. “Terrestrial water storage in this region is crucial in determining water availability, and it is very sensitive to climate change.”

Mann added that it lacked a solid reference for the TWS changes that have already occurred in the Tibetan Plateau. Furthermore, he said, the absence of reliable future projections from TWS limits any guidance on policy-making, despite the fact that the Tibetan Plateau has long been considered a climate change hotspot.

To fill these knowledge gaps, the team used “top-down” – or satellite-based – and “bottom-up” – or ground-based – measurements of water mass in glaciers, lakes and underground sources, combined with machine learning techniques to provide a benchmark of observed changes in the TWS over the past two decades (2002-2020) and projections over the next four decades (2021-2060).

Mann explained that advances in the Gravity Recovery and Climate Experiment (GRACE) satellite missions have provided unprecedented opportunities to quantify large-scale TWS changes. Yet, previous studies have not explored the sensitivity of GRACE solutions using ground-independent data sources, leading to a lack of consensus regarding changes in TWS in the region.

“Compared to previous studies, establishing consistency between the top-down and bottom-up approaches is what gives us confidence in this study that we can accurately measure the declines in TWS that have already occurred in this critical region,” he said. he declares.

Next, the researchers used a new neural network-based machine learning technique to relate these observed changes in total water storage to key climate variables, including air temperature, precipitation, humidity, cloud cover and incoming sunlight. Once they “trained” this artificial neural network model, they were able to study the likely impact of predicted future climate changes on water storage in this region.

Among their findings, published today (August 15e) in the journal Natural climate changethe team found that climate change over the past decades has led to severe depletion of TWS (-15.8 gigatonnes/year) in some areas of the Tibetan Plateau and substantial increases in TWS (5.6 gigatonnes/ yr) in others, probably due to the competing effects of retreating glaciers, degradation of seasonally frozen soils, and expanding lakes.

The team’s projections for the future TWS under a moderate carbon emissions scenario – specifically, the mid-range SSP2-4.5 emissions scenario – suggest that the entire Tibetan Plateau could experience a net loss of carbon. ‘about 230 gigatonnes by the middle of the 21st century (2031-2060) compared to the beginning of the 21st century (2002-2030).

Specifically, projections of excessive water loss for the Amu Darya basin — which supplies water to Central Asia and Afghanistan — and the Indus basin — which supplies water to the north India, Kashmir and Pakistan — show a 119% and 79% decline in water supply capacity, respectively.

“Our study provides insight into the hydrological processes affecting high mountain freshwater supplies that serve large downstream Asian populations,” Long said. “By examining the interactions between climate change and TWS in the historical and future time frame to 2060, this study serves as a foundation to guide future research and the management by governments and institutions of improved adaptation strategies.”

Indeed, Mann added, “Substantial reductions in carbon emissions over the next decade, as the United States is now on the verge of achieving through the recent Cut Inflation Act, can limit additional warming and associated climate change behind the projected collapse of Tibet Plateau water towers But even in the best-case scenario, further losses are likely unavoidable, requiring substantial adaptation to dwindling resources water supply in this vulnerable and densely populated region of the world.

Mann noted that more alternative sources of water supply, including intensified groundwater extraction and transfer projects, may be needed to address amplified water scarcity in the future.

Other authors of the Tsinghua University paper include Xueying Li, Xingdong Li, Fuqiang Tian, ​​Zhangli Sun, and Guangqian Wang. Bridget Scanlon, senior researcher at the University of Texas at Austin, is also an author.

The National Natural Science Foundation of China and the Second Tibetan Plateau Scientific Expedition and Research Program supported this study.

Credit card spending in H1 2022 nears 5-year high


Taipei, Aug 15 (CNA) Credit card spending in Taiwan hit a five-year high in the first half of 2022 as local consumers showed renewed willingness to spend as concerns over COVID-19 eased, according to the Financial Supervisory Commission (FSC).

Credit card spending topped NT$250 billion ($8.33 billion) in June for a second consecutive month, bringing total spending in the first six months to NT$1.54 trillion, up of NT$108.4 billion from the first half of 2021, according to FSC data.

This is the second highest total for the first half of the year since similar credit card data was first compiled in 2018, trailing just NT$1.596 trillion during the same period. period of 2019, according to the FSC.

In June alone, credit card spending reached NT$264.4 billion, up NT$6.4 billion from May.

Tung Cheng-chang (童政彰), deputy director of the FSC Banking Bureau, said the rise in credit card spending in June reflected a recovery in credit card spending for travel, dining and online shopping. due to concerns about the spread of COVID-19. relaxed.

The number of COVID-19 cases in June was still in the tens of thousands, with more than 100 deaths a day, but consumers were less worried as they believed the outbreak had peaked in late May or early June and the Omicron variant was not as lethal as previous variants.

Looking at individual banks, spending with Cathay United Bank credit cards topped all banks at NT$43.7 billion in June, ahead of CTCB Bank at NT$41.1 billion and E Sun Commercial Bank at NT$36.5 billion.

Cards issued by the three private banks accounted for nearly 46% of all credit card spending in Taiwan in June, according to FSC data.

CTBC Bank issued over 100,000 new credit cards in June, making it the largest credit card issuer in Taiwan for the eighth consecutive month, ahead of E. Sun Bank with 80,000 new credit cards issued and Cathay United Bank with 56,000 new credit cards issued.

For the first six months of 2022, spending with credit cards issued by Cathay United Bank led all banks at NT$253.3 billion, followed by CTBC Bank with NT$241.3 billion and E. Sun Bank with NT$212.3 billion, according to FSC statistics.

At the end of June, a total of 53.90 million credit cards were in circulation in Taiwan, up 0.45 percent from the previous month and also up 5.27 percent from a year earlier, the agency said. FSC.

The credit card debt non-performance rate averaged 0.18% at the end of June, down 0.01 percentage points from the previous month and 0.05 points percentage over the previous year, the FSC said.

How to recover a stolen identity


Your identity has therefore been stolen. What should you do next?

The important consequence for any victim of identity theft is that fraudsters can now use their details to commit crimes. Learning that you have been a victim is deeply personal. Discovering that your identity has been used for other crimes can also put you in a corner. You should get professional support if the experience has affected you emotionally.

But what do you really need to do now? What if you’re not a victim, but want to prepare? Here’s how to recover your identity and back it up again in the future.

My Identity Has Been Stolen: Now What?

In 2018, the The US Department of Justice reported that approximately 23 million Americans have been victims of identity theft. Needless to say, this is a huge problem. The Federal Trade Commission runs a identity recovery service that helps you based on your particular situation. But, in general, recovering your identity will usually involve these seven steps.

File a police report

You must report it. Identity theft is a big problem, but you don’t have to dial 911. Instead, call the non-emergency phone number of the law enforcement agency that serves your municipality.

This could be a police department or the sheriff’s office. The number will be on the contact us page of the agency’s official website. You can get this official site by doing a Google search for “[law enforcement agency name] official site.”

When you call this number, tell the administrative agent that you want to report a case of identity theft. They will forward your call to a detective who you can talk to. You may also need to go to the agency in person to get a physical copy of the police report. This document will help you in the next steps of recovering your identity.

Contact your bank and other financial institutions

This step is important; you should do it right after that phone call to the police. Call your bank and tell them you’ve been the victim of identity theft. Call your account manager directly if you have their contact information. Otherwise, visit your bank’s official website and go to the “contact us” page. Look for “report fraud” numbers.

Calling customer service is notoriously slow. You can get faster support if you use the live chat option. And when contacting a support agent, cut to the chase. A good start is: “Hello, my name is Richard and I have reason to believe that someone has stolen my identity. I’m asking for your help. I want to temporarily freeze my account.

Your bank will immediately stop all pending and future charges to your account and credit cards. It is best to immediately contact all banks and financial institutions where you have accounts. Why? Because your information may have been compromised in several ways. The scammer can move on to other accounts once they realize you’re on them.

Change your login information online

You should change your online login information, especially if your identity has been compromised on an online platform. Start by changing your app passwords and PINs. Next, change the passwords for your social media accounts.

Avoid reusing old passwords. Instead, use a password manager to create strong passwords and save them. Also enable multi-factor authentication on all your accounts. This provides another level of protection, so even if someone finds out your login credentials, there’s another barrier before entry.

You don’t have to change passwords for all your online accounts in one day. Instead, make a list of priorities. Start with your banking app passwords. Do you reuse this password elsewhere? Change these destinations as well. Likewise, any platform with financial details.

Next, move on to your main social media accounts. You can move on to the next steps to recover your identity. Don’t forget to set a reminder to change passwords for other online accounts.

Collect evidence of identity theft

Fraudsters may have used your personal information to open a bank account, take out a loan, order a new credit card, or collect government benefits. You probably discovered identity theft when you saw something unexpected on your account statement or received a strange letter from a service provider. These are useful proofs.

So, print or take screenshots of emails; make copies of financial statements or reports; and make copies of other relevant documents. The more, the better. These documents will prove that you did not commit fraud yourself. They will also help investigators review your case more quickly.

Contact your credit agency

Contact Experian, TransUnion or Equifax to place a fraud alert on your behalf. This step is especially important if a fraudster has access to your credit report, social security number, or other information needed to open lines of credit on your behalf. These can potentially ruin your credit score if left unchecked.

A fraud alert is an added layer of security to prevent anyone from taking out instant loans on your behalf. The Fraud Alert does not affect you or your credit score. You can still apply for loans, but a creditor must confirm your identity before approving anything.

File an identity theft report

You will need the identity theft statement to insulate you from criminal and civil liabilities. The report is essentially a dossier of letters from the Federal Trade Commission (FTC). These letters will come in handy when you need to get refunds or dispute fraudulent charges from your bank, credit card company, utility company, or other service providers.

Change your government credentials

Important pieces of identification that you will need to change are your social security card, driver’s license and international passport. The social security administration has a support page with the instructions and forms you’ll need to change your SSN. Similarly, the State Department has a help page to change passport. The numbers for these IDs will change when you replace them, rendering the stolen ones useless.

However, the process is different for your driver’s license. You will need to contact your local DMV for this. You may apply online or need to make an appointment with the DMV, depending on where you live.

How do criminals steal your identity?

The means by which cybercriminals can obtain enough information to steal your identity can be simple or complex. Here are three ways criminals can get your information.

Dumpster dive

A person searches your trash for specific financial documents such as payslips, account statements, receipts and letters. As a general rule, destroy all documents containing information about you and your finances.

Stolen wallets

Besides cash, many people also store their important government IDs and bank cards in their wallets. The information on these cards can do considerable damage in the wrong hands.

Data breaches and phishing

The most technical way cybercriminals obtain your information for identity theft is through data breaches. These data breaches can result from hacking your computer or companies with your data. Similarly, phishing often targets not only your money, but also your data.

While you can’t do much about your information in the hands of a third-party company (except to make sure they store it securely), you can protect the data on your devices. Disk encryption is a good place to start.

You should also monitor important updates on your devices, especially security patches. Likewise, it is possible to spot phishing attempts and stay away.

Identity theft: you are not helpless

Feeling anxious when you find out your identity has been stolen is normal, but you are not helpless. There are resources to help you find your identity, recover stolen money, and prevent future thefts. The important thing is to keep a cool head and not panic.

What Equifax credit score errors mean for consumers


Equifax, one of the three major credit bureaus, announced that a computer coding error led to miscalculation of consumer credit scores during a three-week period between March 17 and April 6. . For 300,000 consumers, the error changed credit scores by as much as 25 spikes. Changes to credit scores do not appear on credit reports, Equifax said in a press release.

Although the mistake caused scores to shift in both positive and negative directions, a 25-point drop in your credit score could cause significant financial damage, especially if you’re on the cusp of one of the bands. credit. For some consumers, this could mean reduced access to financial services and products like auto loans and home mortgages, as well as credit cards with good terms.

NerdWallet spoke with credit experts and consumer advocates to determine what you should do in the wake of this Equifax error.

How to know if you have been affected

It may not be easy to determine if you have been affected by this Equifax error. “To the naked eye, a consumer would never know they’ve been impacted, for good or ill,” credit expert John Ulzheimer said in an email.

Equifax says it is “working with our customers to determine the actual impact on consumers,” although it’s unclear how or when they will notify affected customers, if at all.

“It’s not the consumer’s fault,” says Chi Chi Wu, an attorney at the National Consumer Law Center. “And it’s outrageous that a mistake by Equifax hurt consumers and now they need to go back and fix it.”

Follow these steps to help protect your score following the Equifax error:

If you applied for a car or home loan or a credit card between March 17 and April 6 and your application was denied or you had to pay more – potentially due to this miscalculated score – you may have a recourse if you have received one of the documents below:

Adverse Action Notice: If your request was denied, you should have received a Notice of Adverse Action. Federal law requires creditors to tell you why your application was denied and what office they got their information from, so it’s important to read this letter to better understand if the coding error affected you.

If you’ve been denied” because of things that show up on your credit report, if it has to do with your credit score in some way, then it’s worth going back and pulling a copy of your credit report and credit score,” says Bruce McClary, senior vice president of communications for the National Foundation for Credit Counseling. It’s also worth “finding out what credit score the creditor was using for you evaluate,” he says.

Risk-Based Pricing Notice: If you applied for a loan or credit card during this time and got less favorable terms (e.g. higher interest rates), you should have received a risk-based pricing notice .

If consumers applied for a credit card or loan during this period and did not receive either of these two notices, then, according to Ulzheimer, “they were not declined and they were not approved. with disadvantageous conditions”.

Check your Equifax report

Checking your credit report should be your next step. Here, you’re looking to see if a serious inquiry – or a request to check your credit – comes up. This “firm pull” is confirmation that you applied for credit during the three-week period in which the error was not detected by Equifax.

Disputing the error with Equifax is not an option since incorrectly calculated scores do not appear on credit reports. “There were no errors on their Equifax credit reports that required investigation and correction,” Ulzheimer said. “This was a programming error that was not affected by how a consumer acted or paid their bills.”

If you are concerned, contact your lender and ask them to reassess your application or the terms of the loan.

According to Wu, getting rate changes on a credit card will be easier than changing the terms of a mortgage or auto loan.

If you think you’ve been affected, you can also try calling Equifax Customer Service at 1-888-378-4329.

Watch for a message from Equifax

Keep an eye out for other communications from Equifax. “It is the responsibility of the credit bureau to notify those who have been affected and to provide a course of action people can take to resolve any issues arising from this accident,” McClary said.

Amanda Barroso and Lauren Schwahn are writers at NerdWallet. Email: [email protected], [email protected] Twitter: @lauren-schwahn.

Fundraising lessons for parties

Probably for the first time in the country’s history, public attention has been drawn to the critical but largely neglected subject of political finance through the recent judgment of the Election Commission of Pakistan (ECP) in the case of the financing prohibited. Whatever opinion one may have of the ECP’s findings in this case, the eight years of proceedings have revealed uncomfortable realities about political party fundraising practices and weaknesses in monitoring the political funding.

Despite weaknesses in implementation, Pakistan has almost always benefited from a strong legal framework to regulate fundraising by political parties. The Political Parties Act 1962, followed by the Political Parties Ordinance 2002, both contained detailed provisions on the financing of political parties. With slight variations, the same provisions have also been retained in the current law, the Elections Act 2017.

Funding of political parties by domestic corporations was not permitted until 2017, but unlike in the past, the ban on funding of political parties by domestic corporations was omitted from the 2017 election law, as the words “nationally incorporated public or private enterprises”. society” used in the 1962 PPA and the 2002 PPO have been removed from the prohibited sources of funding for political parties. Company law may impose its own restrictions, but at least electoral laws do not prohibit corporate funding of political parties.

Foreign funding of political parties was prohibited in all three laws, but the prohibition was made stricter in the 2002 PPO compared to the 1962 PPA. The definition of a “foreign-assisted political party” in the PPA 1962 included “a substantial part of its funds from abroad”. nationals”, but the PPO 2002 and now the Electoral Act 2017 omitted the word “substantial” from the relevant provisions of the law and replaced it with “everything”. This was a significant change as it significantly lowered the threshold for inclusion of a political party among parties receiving foreign aid.

Article 17(3) of Pakistan’s constitution provides that “every political party shall account for the source of its funds in accordance with law”. The Electoral Law of 2017 is the current law mentioned in the constitution and its chapter XI covers political parties. Article 204 of the law deals with the financing of political parties and its paragraph 3 deals with the prohibition of foreign sources of financing. Article 210 of the law obliges each political party to submit annually to the ECP a consolidated statement of its audited accounts certified by the leader of the party or an official appointed by him.

The ECP publishes photocopies of these statements of accounts each year through publication in the Official Gazette, but it has rarely attempted to examine these statements or even asked a political party to provide the missing information. This is likely due to the fact that there is no express provision in the law authorizing the ECP to review the declarations and take follow-up action if the declarations are inaccurate or deficient. The apparent lack of capacity of the PCE to undertake such a professional review is another reason for inaction.

The recent ECP order and previous investigation into PTI accounts spanning approximately eight years was not due to the ECP initiative; this was made possible by a complaint filed by a founding member and former PTI Information Secretary, Akbar S. Babar, whose tenacity in pursuing his complaint despite court challenges and PTI resistance has led to the completion of the ECP survey.

Despite the fact that the ECP order identified a number of irregularities and violations of laws in PTI’s financial dealings which will ultimately have to be resolved in higher courts, the PTI and its Chairman Imran Khan must be recognized to be the only mainstream party besides probably Jamaat-e-Islami who created an elaborate system of fundraising with particular focus on overseas Pakistanis and, through them, their friends and businesses there ‘foreign. The PTI system was so successful that in 2012-2013 it became the only party to raise more than 1 billion Pakistani rupees in one year. The PML-N is a distant second that could raise around half that amount (Rs596 million) in the same year.

Based on available public records, PTI also has the distinction of raising the highest amount of aggregate funds – 3.66 billion rupees – over the past 13 years, followed by MQM which raised less than 2 billion rupees. rupees and PML-N which collected 1 rupees. 0.48 billion during the same period. PPP and JI could raise 0.68 billion and 0.38 billion rupees respectively. Unless a law is broken, in which case the law should, of course, take its course, the ability to raise more funds should be seen as an advantage to a political party.

As violation of political finance laws can have serious political and security implications for a country, as the integrity of political parties, parliament and government can be compromised, it is important that the PCE be empowered both legally and technically to perform a regular review. at least a random sample, say 10%, of account statements submitted by political parties, legislators and candidates.

It is to be hoped that the ECP and the political parties have learned the lessons of the affair of the forbidden financing of the PTI. The ECP must strengthen its political finance wing and political parties must learn to maintain their books according to the law – both in letter and in spirit.

The author is Chairman of PILDAT – Pakistan Institute of Legislative Development and Transparency.

He tweets @ABMPildat and can be contacted at: [email protected]

Tips for Gradually Applying for More Credit Cards

In the interest of full disclosure, OMAAT earns a referral bonus for anyone approved through some of the links below. Citi is an advertising partner of OMAAT. These are the best publicly available deals (conditions apply) we’ve found for each product or service. The opinions expressed here are those of the author alone, and not those of the bank, credit card issuer, airline, hotel chain or product manufacturer/service provider, and have not been reviewed, approved or otherwise endorsed by any of these entities. Please see our Advertiser Policy for more details on our partners, and thank you for your support!

A longtime reader emailed me with a question that I thought made sense to address here, as I know many are probably in the same boat.

How do you decide when to apply for more credit cards?

A reader in his 20s has excellent credit and purchased the Chase Sapphire Reserve® (review) card last year. He has over 100,000 Chase Ultimate Rewards points, which he wants to keep accumulating. He says he can basically get any card he wants, but he doesn’t know where to go from here:

  • He’s not a big consumer of credit cards, so realistically he won’t be splitting his expenses between a dozen cards.
  • He would love to take advantage of some of the great credit card bonuses, but also doesn’t want to open and close cards (naturally), nor does he want to rack up too many annual fees.

With that out of the way, how do you decide whether to open a new card and what offers to take advantage of?

How do you decide which credit cards to apply for?

My Philosophy on Building a Credit Card Wallet

Let me start with an important warning: only ask for more credit cards if you can use them responsibly. If you end up spending too much and funding fees, you’re unlikely to win. That said, I have two general thoughts if you’re in a situation where you have good credit but a limited number of credit cards.

First of all, when it comes to opening credit cards (and most things in life, for that matter), slow and steady wins the race. If you’re starting out with just one credit card, I don’t recommend suddenly applying for 10 credit cards at once, as this could have a significant impact on your credit score. This is especially true early in your credit card journey, if you only have one or two cards.

Second, in the long run, having lots of credit cards can absolutely improve your credit score. I have over two dozen credit cards and my credit score is near perfect. You’ll want to be sure to make your payments on time, but beyond that, having more cards can improve your credit score:

  • Having more credit cards increases your total available credit, potentially allowing you to reduce your credit utilization (the percentage of your available credit that you use); this represents 30% of your credit score
  • Having more credit cards for a long time can help your average account age, and moreover the more cards you have, the less your average account age is impacted by opening a new card; this represents 15% of your credit score

The only other consideration is that applying for the credit card will give you an inquiry into your credit report, which may temporarily lower your score by a few points. However, this shouldn’t be a long-term problem.

Building a credit card portfolio takes time

How do you decide which cards to open?

If I had a good credit score, but only one credit card and a fairly poor credit history, I would probably apply for one or two cards as soon as possible. I recommend doing this quickly, because as I explained above, it will help establish and further stabilize your credit profile.

My goal wouldn’t necessarily be to get the cards with the biggest welcome offers, but rather to get cards where I see value and can see myself keeping for the long term. And if I wasn’t sure I could take advantage of long-term cards, I’d probably consider a card where I know there’s a downgrade option after a year.

An ideal card might be a card with strong ongoing benefits that more than justify the annual fee, or it might be a card with no annual fee, because it’s good to have cards that you can keep for years and years at no cost, to help you build your average accounts age.

In my opinion, there are a few different strategies to adopt here…

Since the reader already owns the Chase Sapphire Reserve® card, it might be worth getting the Chase Freedom Unlimited® at no annual fee (review). The card offers 1.5x points on all purchases, so it’s one of the best cards for everyday spending. It could be a great card to keep long-term to build the reader’s credit score, and could also help maximize spending to earn more Chase Points.

Hotel credit cards are also easy to justify, in my opinion. For example, I would consider taking the IHG $99 annual fee® Rewards Premier Credit Card (review), which offers a phenomenal welcome bonus and offers a free birthday night certificate, IHG One Rewards Platinum status and much more. This should more than justify the annual fee on an ongoing basis, but if not, it should be possible to upgrade to the IHG® Rewards Traveler Credit Card with no annual fee (review).

I also think it’s good to diversify the card issuers a bit, so if it was me, I’d consider taking the $95 Citi Premier annual fee duo® Card (balance) and the Citi® Double Cash Card with no annual fee (balance). Both cards are excellent complements and have big bonuses.

You can even transfer Citi ThankYou points to some of the same partners as Chase Ultimate Rewards. If after one year you decide not to pay the annual fee on the Citi Premier Card, you have downgrade options, such as the Citi Rewards+® Card (Revision) and Citi Custom Cash℠ Card (Revision).

There are obviously many other options, but this is just one example of a few different directions you can go.

Retrieving hotel credit cards can make a lot of sense

At the end of the line

It’s exciting to have a great credit score and to be approved for your first “big league” credit card. However, it can be difficult to decide what to do from there, especially when trying to maintain (or even improve) your credit score.

Having more credit cards (and using them responsibly) can absolutely improve your credit score over time, but I recommend taking a slow and steady approach. If I only had one or two cards, I would recommend asking for an extra card or two that you plan to keep for the long term. These can be cards with no annual fee or cards with benefits that more than offset the annual fee.

Then see how things go – you’ll probably be pleasantly surprised at how your credit score and overall credit profile has changed, so hopefully after about six months you’ll be able to recover some more maps. But I think it’s a good start.

If anyone has similar experiences or tips, feel free to share them below!

Identity theft on the rise. Here’s what you can do.


Identity theft is skyrocketing, doubling in frequency since 2019 to become the second most reported complaint according to the Federal Trade Commission. Almost every American today has had their personal information breached at least once, and chances are you will experience an effort to steal your identity at some point, perhaps more than once. time. But there are steps you can take to mitigate the risk and act quickly to repair the damage in case you eventually become a victim.

As long as human beings have maintained unique individual identities, scammers have sought to get away with them. Early brutal examples involved the murder of the victim and the impersonation of their physical identity by the criminal in order to evade the law or former associates. Financial fraudsters literally rummaged through trash cans or created elaborate phone schemes to get enough information from the victim to liquidate their bank accounts. But it took the advent of the Internet to fuel the dramatic increase in large-scale, sophisticated identity theft.

The term “identity theft” was first used in 1964 and is defined as a crime in which someone wrongfully obtains and uses another person’s personal data in a way that involves fraud or deception, usually for personal gain. According to the FTC, 1.4 million cases of consumer identity theft were reported in 2021, but industry analysts estimate that up to 90% of cases go unreported. Javelin Strategy and Research estimates that 42 million Americans were affected by identity fraud last year, resulting in losses of $52 billion.

It is impossible to completely inoculate yourself with this type of crime given the plethora of personal information about each of us that circulates in the ether. According to a former hacker turned security consultant, the only reason more people haven’t been victimized is that there just aren’t enough criminals to use all the data out there. Yet there are several steps each of us can take to minimize the risk of attack.

* Freeze your credit. A credit freeze prevents any potential creditor from accessing your credit report unless you are already a borrower. By law, each of the three bureaus (Experian, TransUnion and Equifax) offers this service free of charge by creating an account and enabling or disabling the real-time freeze. It’s easy and it’s the strongest defense against fraudulent accounts being set up in your name.

* Watch your credit. Consider signing up for one of the many free basic credit score monitoring services that provide access to your credit report and alert you to changes. Several companies, including Credit Karma, Credit Sesame, and SoFi, offer basic free offerings. Many credit card issuers now also offer free access to your Fico score. And by law, you’re entitled to a free report from every bureau on AnnualCreditReport.com.

* Correct your passwords! According to LastPass, 91% of consumers know that reusing passwords greatly increases the risk of theft, but 66% do it anyway. Strengthen your passwords and make them unique. A password manager app can do this for you and even change them periodically. Also enable two-factor authentication (email or SMS verification) where possible.

* Review statements. Beyond the credit freeze, the best protection is vigilant monitoring. Carefully review bank and credit card statements for any unknown or unexpected activity and contact the institution promptly if you see anything suspicious.

* Identity protection services. Subscription monitoring and mitigation services are now a $10 billion industry. Paid services may be worth the cost if you are not inclined to do the work yourself or think you may not be diligent enough. However, it is important to understand that despite their names, these services cannot actually “protect” you from identity theft. Many, for example, advertise Dark Web monitoring for your personal information, but note that they cannot delete or block the data they find and cannot stop identity theft, but can provide a warning that your information is for sale and can help recovery following a theft.

Most identity monitoring subscriptions also offer some degree of insurance coverage to reimburse the cost of repairing a breach and, in some cases, recovering lost assets. Note, however, that you may be able to add similar coverage to your home insurance policy for less.

What to do if (when) this happens to you

One of the most useful and lesser-known resources is the Federal Trade Commission’s identity theft website at IdentityTheft.gov. As soon as you suspect your identity has been stolen, report the incident to the FTC’s Fraud Department. Then change your critical logins and passwords and request your credit report from all three bureaus. Even better, IdentityTheft.gov will create a custom recovery plan to guide you through the steps of securing your accounts. Repairing and securing your profile after identity theft takes considerable effort, but if detected and reported early, it can usually be resolved within 6 months without permanent damage.

With the massive amounts of personal data in circulation, we are all at significant risk from identity thieves. Taking a few simple precautions can greatly reduce the risk of theft and facilitate quick recovery if it does occur.

Christopher A. Hopkins is a Chartered Financial Analyst and co-founder of Apogee Wealth Partners LLC

Deutsche Bank Announces Pricing of Its Previously Announced Tender Offer for Certain of Its Outstanding Eligible Bonds | New

FRANKFURT AM MAIN, Germany–(BUSINESS WIRE)–August 11, 2022–

Deutsche Bank Aktiengesellschaft (XETRA: DBKGn.DE / NYSE: DB) (“Deutsche Bank”) today announced the pricing of its previously announced cash tender offer (the “Tender Offer”) for aggregate principal amount of up to $1.0 billion on its 3,035% Qualifying Senior Notes Obligations due 2032, 2.552% Qualifying Senior Notes Obligations maturing 2028, 2.311% Qualifying Obligations Senior Notes due 2027, and its 2.129% Senior Notes Eligible Bonds due 2026 (the “Bonds”), at a fixed spread over a Benchmark US Treasury (as defined below), as described in the associated offer to purchase dated July 28, 2022 (the “Offer to Purchase”). Capitalized terms used in this release and not defined herein have the meaning given to them in the Offer to Purchase. The offer to purchase can be accessed at the following link: https://gbsc-usa.com/registration/db.

The table below summarizes certain information regarding the Notes and the tender offer, including information about the purchase price of the Notes.

Acceptance priority level

Note title

CUSIP number


Principal amount outstanding (millions)

Overall principal amount to be accepted

US Treasury Reference
Security (“Reference Security”)

Benchmark return

Fixed spread


Full Tender Offer Consideration per $1,000 Principal Amount of Notes(1)(2)

Late Tender Offer Consideration per $1,000 Principal Amount of Notes (2)


Senior Notes at 3.035% Qualifying Commitments
due 2032

251526CK3 / US251526CK32



2.875% U.S. Treasury Bills due May 15, 2032






Senior Notes at 2.552% Qualifying Commitments
deadline 2028

25160PAH0 / US25160PAH01



2.750% U.S. Treasury Bills due July 31, 2027






Senior Notes at 2.311% Qualifying Commitments
deadline 2027

251526CP2 / US251526CP29


2.750% U.S. Treasury Bills due July 31, 2027



2.129% eligible senior bonds due 2026

251526CE7 / US251526CE71


3.000% U.S. Treasury Bills due July 15, 2025



The total tender offer price for Notes validly tendered before or at the Early Tender Time and accepted for purchase is calculated using the applicable Fixed Spread and includes the Early Tender Payment, which equals $30 per $1,000 principal amount of Notes validly tendered. no later than the Early Bid Time and accepted for purchase by Deutsche Bank (the “Pre-Bid Payment”). The Aggregate Tender Offer Price will be determined taking into account the par redemption date for each series of Notes.


Calculated at 10:00 a.m. New York time on August 11, 2022 and assumes an early settlement date of August 15, 2022.

Holders of Notes validly presented (and not validly withdrawn) by the Early Tender Time and accepted for purchase are eligible to receive the full consideration for the tender offer specified in the table above, which includes advance deposit payment. Holders of Notes validly tendered (and not validly withdrawn) after the Early Tender Time and no later than the Expiry Time and accepted for purchase will only be eligible to receive the Tender Offer Consideration specified in the table above, which is equal to the Full Consideration of the Offer to Purchase minus the Prepayment of the Offer. In addition to the Full Tender Offer Consideration or the Late Tender Offer Consideration, as the case may be, Holders of Securities accepted for purchase will receive Accrued Interest on such Securities from the last date payment of interest relating to the Notes up to, but not including, the applicable settlement date.

The terms and conditions of the Tender Offer are described in the Tender Offer.

Deutsche Bank expects to settle all tendered and not validly withdrawn bonds no later than the time of the early offer, and shown as accepted in the table above, on August 15, 2022.

Except as described above, the Tender Offer is not modified by this announcement. The tender offer will expire at 11:59 p.m., New York time, on August 24, 2022, unless extended or terminated earlier by Deutsche Bank.

Deutsche Bank’s affiliate, Deutsche Bank Securities Inc., is acting as Dealer Manager for the tender offer. For further information regarding the terms of the tender offer, please contact: Deutsche Bank Securities Inc. at (866) 627-0391 (toll-free) or (212) 250-2955 (collect). Tender Offer requests may be directed to Global Bondholder Services Corporation, which is acting as the Submission Agent and Information Agent for the Tender Offer, at (212) 430-3774 or ( 855) 654-2015 (toll-free) or [email protected] The offer to purchase is also accessible at the following link: http://gbsc-usa.com/registration/db.






This press release contains forward-looking statements. Forward-looking statements are statements that are not historical facts; they include statements about our beliefs and expectations and the assumptions underlying them. These statements are based on plans, estimates and projections as currently available to the management of Deutsche Bank. Forward-looking statements therefore speak only as of the date they are made, and we undertake no obligation to publicly update any of them in light of new information or future events.

By their very nature, forward-looking statements involve risks and uncertainties. A number of important factors could therefore cause actual results to differ materially from those contained in any forward-looking statement. These factors include conditions in the financial markets in Germany, Europe, the United States and elsewhere from which we derive a substantial portion of our revenues and in which we hold a substantial portion of our assets, changes in asset prices and market volatility, potential borrower or commercial counterparty defaults, the implementation of our strategic initiatives, the reliability of our risk management policies, procedures and methods, and other risks referenced in our filings with the United States Securities and Exchange Commission. These factors are described in detail in our SEC Form 20-F dated March 11, 2022 under the heading “Risk Factors”. Copies of this document are readily available upon request or can be downloaded from www.db.com/ir.

See the source version on businesswire.com: https://www.businesswire.com/news/home/20220811005638/en/

CONTACT: Deutsche Bank:

Investor Relations

+49 800 910-8000

[email protected]



SOURCE: Deutsche Bank AG

Copyright BusinessWire 2022.

PUBLISHED: 8/11/2022 1:01 PM / DISK: 8/11/2022 1:02 PM


Back to School Poll | The bank rate


The impact of historical inflation rates on US consumers is undeniable. In the twelve months ending June 2022, the cost of goods and services climbed 9.1%. Such price hikes have put extreme pressure on consumers, especially families preparing for the upcoming school year.

A new back-to-school shopping survey conducted by Bankrate found that 41% of back-to-school shoppers say inflation will change their shopping habits for the next school year. Of this group, a remarkable 95% are exploring money saving strategies.

Ready for a back-to-school shopping plan that’s right for you? Here’s what others are doing and how you can best manage the expenses ahead.

Middle-income people brace for the biggest changes

Although nearly everyone in the United States is feeling the financial pinch, middle-income consumers are making these back-to-school shopping adjustments at the fastest rate: 53% of those with annual household incomes between $50 $000 and $99,999 a year say they will change their spending because of inflation. This compares to 39% of high-income households (earning $100,000 or more per year) and 37% of low-income households (earning less than $50,000 per year).

Middle-income households are also more likely to use money-saving tactics like buying used/second-hand items (28% vs. 21% of low-income households and 23% of middle-income households high), the stretch of standard items by another year (32%). vs. 28% of low-income and high-income households) and to seek out more coupons, discounts and sales (50% vs. 46% of low-income and 43% of high-income households).

How to reduce the cost of school expenses

If you’re like most Americans, shopping for school expenses is a major retail event. According to National Retail Federation Annual Surveyfamilies with children in elementary through high school plan to spend an average of $864 on school supplies this year.

Trying to cover those costs takes a heavy toll on American families who are already struggling to manage more expensive household items. Bankrate’s survey found that 31% of back-to-school shoppers expect these purchases to strain their budget, and 26% say they feel pressured to spend more than they want.

Such financial stress comes as no surprise, given the higher costs consumers face. A February 2022 Bankrate survey found that 93% of Americans experienced higher prices in the past year, and nearly 3 in 4 (73%) worried about new or continued price increases on basic necessities over the next year.

Fortunately, there are achievable ways to stretch your dollars. Bankrate’s survey found that inflation-conscious back-to-school shoppers plan to take steps to offset higher costs:

  • 54% plan to search for more coupons, discounts and sales.
  • 45% plan to buy fewer school items (supplies, clothes, etc.).
  • 43% plan to buy cheaper brands.
  • 39% plan to expand the items they currently have for another year.
  • 37% plan to shop at stores where they have store-specific loyalty accounts or credit cards.
  • 30% plan to buy used and used items.
  • 25% plan to use credit card rewards to offset costs.
  • 21% plan to delay purchases.
  • 4% plan to employ another cost-cutting technique.

“I think all of the money-saving strategies referenced in our survey are worth considering,” says Ted Rossman, senior industry analyst at Bankrate. “I especially like looking for opportunities to accumulate discounts, such as combining credit card rewards with store coupons and online shopping portals. That’s three ways to save on the same purchase.

How consumers are financing back to school

So how will shoppers pay for their groceries? Of those planning to shop for back to school this year, more than half (57%) will use a debit card to pay for those purchases, followed by cash (47%) and a credit card (46 %). Less common payment options include buy-it-now and pay-later services (14%) and checks (9%).

Credit card users vary in how they’ll pay for back-to-school purchases: 30% plan to pay in full on their statement date and 21% plan to spread payments over multiple billing cycles.

However, it is important to keep debt to a minimum, especially as inflation rages on. Credit card balances tend to increase as people try to fill financial gaps. August 2022 from the Federal Reserve Bank of New York household debt and credit report identified a 13% year-over-year increase in credit card balances, the largest increase in 20 years. With credit card interest rates also on the rise, the cost of carrying a credit card balance from one month to the next can increase rather than alleviate financial stress.

Although using cash for purchases, including paying a credit card bill in full, is a good way to avoid interest, the survey found that only 33% of back-to-school shoppers expect to have money set aside specifically for these purchases.

Use the right credit cards for back-to-school purchases

In addition to careful spending strategies, back-to-school shoppers can cut costs and avoid costly credit card debt by using the right payment products.

Reward credit cards are great tools. You can use a cash back card to accumulate money when you bill for back-to-school expenses and then use the money you earned to pay the bill or buy other necessary items. Credit cards that offer point rewards can also be beneficial. Most issuers allow cardholders to redeem points for cash or gift cards, and if there’s a shopping portal, you can redeem the rewards for products.

Applying for a new credit card can also help. Look for credit cards with big sign-up bonuses. The best credit card sign-up bonuses can earn you several hundred dollars in cash or points that you can use for purchases, reducing your expenses.

Another option is a credit card with an introductory APR of 0%. These are great products if you need to pay back your back-to-school expenses over time. The best 0% APR intro deals give you over a year to pay off the balance with no additional finance charges. Just be sure to pay the balance in full before the regular rate kicks in.

The bottom line

No one knows when inflation will come down and costs will come down or even stabilize. Although the prices of consumer goods are out of your control, how you buy and pay for back-to-school items is something you can control. Use spending strategies that make sense for you and your family. Whenever possible, eliminate consumer debt before interest applies and use credit cards to work for you rather than against you.


Bankrate.com has commissioned YouGov Plc to carry out the investigation. All figures unless otherwise stated are from YouGov Plc. The total sample size was 2,438 adults, of which 729 plan to go back to school shopping. The fieldwork was undertaken between 13 and 15 July 2022. The survey was conducted online and meets rigorous quality standards. It used a non-probability sample using upstream quotas during collection and then a downstream weighting scheme designed and tested to provide nationally representative results.

Waka Kotahi entrepreneur uses stolen identities to take out fraudulent loans


A computer scientist hired by Waka Kotahi used his access to driver’s license databases to trick police, create a false identity, and take out massive loans in other people’s names to pay for meth.

One such person saw his life ruined, going from a nearly perfect credit score to one so bad he couldn’t rent a house.

David Allan Davies, 38, claims he was tricked into committing fraud by gangs to pay off a drug debt to a boarder.

But that boarder, who was believed by a judge, said there was never any debt and that Davies had to fund his own meth use.

* Car registration, fixed license fees for overhaul
* Warning about scam tricking people into renewing their license plate
* Repeat fraudster gets more jail time for loan scam

Davies was sentenced in Palmerston North District Court on Thursday to two years, five months and two weeks in jail for a slew of dishonesty offenses stemming from his time working for Waka Kotahi.

His job as a contractor gave him access to various sections of Waka Kotahi’s computer systems, which he used to create several fake user identities for the systems, which he used to access these databases.

He changed and attempted to change several people’s license status, giving out certain qualifications they hadn’t been tested for, while fake-licensing himself under someone else’s name.

Cybercrime is the second least reported crime, after sexual assault, according to the Crime and Victims Survey.

He also used his right of access to extricate himself from an exclusionary driving charge.

He was disqualified in 2014 but caught driving at Palmerston North in 2018, leading to the charge.

He accessed Waka Kotahi Systems and changed his license status from disqualified to reinstated before calling Waka Kotahi’s customer service center to verify that his disqualification was over.

He then accessed their system again, creating a fraudulently signed letter to himself on behalf of a senior Waka Kotahi executive which he gave to the police to “prove” his license was reinstated, which resulted in the disqualification driving charge being dropped.

David Allan Davies claims he was tricked into committing fraud by gangs.

David Unwin / Stuff

David Allan Davies claims he was tricked into committing fraud by gangs.

He also changed the ownership and registration details of vehicles, including an Alfa Romeo 156.

He used details he gathered while at Waka Kotahi to fraudulently take out loans on behalf of others, including the name he put on his fake license.

He managed to get $53,487 and tried to get $98,000 between September 2018 and September 2020.

One victim, who spoke in court in March when Davies was originally due to be sentenced, said she was close to buying a house, had a solid job and had a credit score above 800.

But Davies’ offense — he took out multiple lines of credit in the victim’s name, depleting one and then another for a total of $26,163.61 — left the victim with such a low score that he didn’t couldn’t even rent a house.

The debt collectors harassed him, the stress increasing to such an extent that he had to quit his job.

Crown Attorney Guy Carter said Davies’ comment to a victim at a restorative justice meeting – he described the victim as “just a number” – showed a lack of empathy.

“He is not a man forced or coerced into committing this offense by others,” Carter said.

“He’s a man who just does it because he wanted to, treating people like numbers because he can and for his own satisfaction.”

David Allan Davies fiddled with the details of several driver's licenses, giving people qualifications they hadn't been tested for.  (file photo)


David Allan Davies fiddled with the details of several driver’s licenses, giving people qualifications they hadn’t been tested for. (file photo)

Defense attorney Kila Pedder said Davies was sorry for his actions, taking the time to meet with a victim.

He also contacted credit companies to say he was the person responsible for the loans.

Davies would not be able to pay for the repairs as he was receiving an allowance to care for his mother, but he could find work if he was under house arrest, Pedder said.

In an affidavit, Davies said a boarder who moved in with his mother had a drug debt, which was transferred to him.

The gang members made him change the license details and then made him pay off the drug debts via the frauds, he said.

But the boarder said in a statement that he had no debt, instead pointing to Davies’ meth use.

He would change license details in exchange for methamphetamine and use the money from his frauds for, among other things, pet food.

The judge said Davies and his mother told a pre-sentence report writer that he fell into a bad crowd, but differed on other points.

He said he did not use drugs, while his mother said he used methamphetamine, the judge heard.

Also, a cheat was a line of credit with a farming business where he could get pet food — something much less likely to be for drug debts.

“I assumed drug gang members could have pets,” Judge said.

Davies was not ordered to pay the remedy as there was no realistic way to pay it.

In an unattributed statement, Waka Kotahi said he contacted 45 people whose accounts Davies accessed as soon as police gave his approval.

Increased security oversight was in place, including controls over who could access license information.

TUYA INVESTOR ALERT: Robbins Geller Rudman & Dowd LLP Files Class Action Lawsuit Against Tuya Inc., Announces Opportunity for Investors Suffering Substantial Losses to Lead Case

SAN DIEGO–(BUSINESS WIRE)–Robbins Geller Rudman & Dowd LLP announces that it has filed a class action lawsuit seeking to represent purchasers of American Depositary Shares (“ADS”) of Tuya Inc. (NYSE: TUYA) in connection with Tuya’s March 2021 initial public offering (the “IPO”). Subtitle Lian v. Tuya Inc.no. 22-cv-06792 (SDNY) – the tuya The class action charges Tuya, some of its key officers and directors, and IPO underwriters with violations of the Securities Act of 1933.

If you have suffered significant losses and wish to act as lead plaintiff, please provide your information here:


You can also contact a lawyer JC Sanchez of Robbins Geller by calling 800/449-4900 or emailing [email protected] Principal Applicant’s Requests for tuya the class action must be filed with the court no later than October 11, 2022.

CASE ALLEGATIONS: Based in China, Tuya’s proprietary products and services enable so-called “smart devices” for example, household items and Internet-connected devices, to communicate and interact with end users and online information and services. About 20% of Tuya’s customers sell products online through e-commerce marketplaces such as Amazon.com. And to maintain the integrity of its platform, Amazon.com has long banned the practice of sellers paying review writers for their reviews in most cases.

Prior to the IPO, Tuya claimed to be experiencing phenomenal growth. But as the tuya The class action alleges that the IPO registration statement documents were materially false and misleading because they failed to disclose that: (i) a significant portion of Tuya’s China-based customers engaged in widespread and systematic manipulation of product reviews and offers in violation of Amazon.com’s Terms of Service; (ii) Prior to the IPO, a consumer investigation and data breach revealed an illicit false review scheme perpetrated by many of Tuya’s customers, among others, which included, among other things, the exposure of 13 millions of fake review scam records linked to more than 200,000 Amazon account profiles; (iii) as a result, there was a substantial risk that a significant portion of Tuya’s significant customers would not be permitted to use Amazon.com’s platform, which would adversely impact business, revenue, Tuya’s earnings and prospects; and (iv) as such, statements in the IPO registration statement regarding Tuya’s historical financial and operating measures and purported market opportunities and expected growth did not accurately reflect the business, Tuya’s actual operations, financial results and trajectory at the time of the IPO.

By August 2022, the price of Tuya ADSs had fallen below $2 per ADS – 90% below the price at which Tuya ADSs were sold to the investing public in the IPO.

The plaintiff is represented by Robbins Geller, who extensive experience in pursuing investor class actions, including actions involving financial fraud. You can view a copy of the complaint by clicking here.

THE PRINCIPAL APPLICANT PROCESS: The Private Securities Litigation Reform Act of 1995 allows any investor who holds Tuya ADSs or is traceable to IPO during the class action period to seek appointment as as lead applicant in the tuya class action. A principal plaintiff is generally the plaintiff with the greatest financial interest in the remedy sought by the putative class that is also typical and adequate of the putative class. A lead plaintiff acts on behalf of all other class members by directing the tuya class action. The main plaintiff can select a law firm of his choice to plead tuya class action. An investor’s ability to participate in any potential future upturn in the tuya the class action does not depend on the status of principal plaintiff.

ABOUT ROBBINS GELLER: Robbins Geller is one of the world’s leading complex class action firms representing plaintiffs in securities fraud cases. The firm is ranked No. 1 in the 2021 ISS Securities Class Action Services Top 50 report for recovering nearly $2 billion for investors last year alone, more than triple the amount recovered by any other firm from plaintiffs. With 200 attorneys in 9 offices, Robbins Geller is one of the largest plaintiffs firms in the world and the firm’s attorneys have secured many of the largest securities class action recoveries in history, including the largest never-recorded securities class action recovery – $7.2 billion – in In re Enron Corp. Dry. Litigation Please visit the following page for more information:


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The Best Travel Credit Cards for Every Vacation Style


In the past, airport lounges were reserved for only a select few. A private and tranquil pre-flight experience was reserved for the most frequent flyers or elite members.

But the growing popularity of credit cards that grant lounge access means you can feel like a million bucks before takeoff… without spending a million bucks on your ticket.

First, consider a high-end credit card from a bank. As airport lounges become increasingly popular (and crowded), there remains a certain cachet and appeal to hide in a somewhat exclusive space away from the masses.

There are three mainstream premium bank cards – with annual fees of $400 or more – from Chase, Capital One and American Express – all with airport lounge access.

The card that comes with the most lounges in the world is the Platinum Card from American Express. With this card, you are guaranteed access to more than 1,400 airport lounges in 140 countries.

Additionally, in 2013, American Express entered the business of owning and operating its own salons. Centurion Lounges, with 14 locations across the United States, are among the most upscale airport spaces in the country and include fine dining, spa services and shower rooms.

Of course, the card costs almost $700 per year. But this champagne upstream is just different.

But maybe you are loyal to a specific airline, but not loyal enough to gain access to the lounge. This is where a premium airline credit card can come into play.

Cards from carriers like United, American, and Delta provide Airline Club access, but only when you’re flying on that carrier. For example, if you’re a Delta loyalist who’s still stuck in savings, it might be a good idea to access Delta Sky Club via a premium Delta credit card.

And a pro tip: you can access most airline-specific lounges upon arrival and before departure.

Who is Vecna ​​in Dungeons and Dragons?

Quick links

  • The Return and Rise of Vecna

With the introduction of Stranger Things to another Dungeons & Dragons– related character, everyone can talk about Vecna. The show’s depiction of the deity creates a Freddy Krueger-like being who invades the minds of those who have suffered great trauma and sacrifices them for his own selfish ends. As frightening as this entity is, it is not the real Vena.

Related: Dungeons & Dragons: The Mightiest Gods

While torturing others through their dreams is definitely something he would do if he could, D&D’s Vecna ​​is very different from his Netflix counterpart. While both are jaded narcissists who have great delusions of grandeur, Vecna’s original story is far more complicated than a boy born with supernatural powers.


Humble beginnings

Vecna ​​was not born as an all-powerful evil god of secrets and death. No, he was born as a normal human in the city of Fleeth, a small town located on the eastern continent of Oerik. A young Vecna ​​is known to have trained under the tutelage of his mother in the arts of magic, a subject feared by many within the walls of Fleeth. As such, upon discovery, Vecna’s mother was executed for her practice of “witchcraft”.

Angry and scared, Vecna ​​flees, swearing revenge on the city that took his mother away from him. Here is where there is a bit of confusion as to what Vecna ​​did next. There is a theory that he trained under Mok’slyk the Serpent, an entity believed to be the very personification of magic, due to Vecna’s supposed relationship with the Elder Brothers – a group including Mok’slyk is part. Other sources state that he was afraid of his own mortality and sought out the Demon Lord Orcus to learn the secrets of undeath. Regardless of his ways, Vecna ​​returned 1,000 years later for revenge.

Vecna ​​The Ark Lich

Vecna ​​would return to Fleeth in the form of a lich, bringing with him a terrible army of the undead and ransacking the city. It was said that the newly created Lich was nearly killed as a group of priests cast a powerful spell that badly damaged his left side. It was only through the intervention of the demi-demon Acererak that Vecna ​​survived this attack. However, it wasn’t the kindness in Acererak’s heart that drove him to save the Lich.

In reality, the half-demon had staged the attack, hoping that by saving his master, Acererak would gain favor and come one step closer to obtaining Vecna’s secrets. Upon learning of Acererak’s deception, Vecna ​​became paranoid. He jealously guarded his secrets, refusing to let anyone in on his knowledge. It was this greed for secrecy, along with his ever-increasing power, that led many to believe that Vecna ​​was some kind of god.

Related: Dungeons & Dragons: The Best High Level Bosses In The Monster Handbook

These fanatics served as the basis for the Occluded Empire. All over Oerith, sects of this new cult have sprung up, extending the reach of Vecna’s influence with minimal effort from the lich itself. Over time, Vecna ​​extended its control to the northwest, conquering a substantial portion near the Azure Sea. At the rate he was going, he would take full control of Oerith. It would have been if he hadn’t been betrayed.

It was Vecna’s most trusted lieutenant who did the deed. A vampire by the name of Kas the Bloody-Handed. It’s unknown why he did this, but many believe it was his sword, a weapon made by Vecna ​​himself, that seduced Kas with the idea of ​​usurping the power of the lich for his own. . Whatever the reason, the only thing left of Vecna ​​after the battle was her left arm and eye, her latent magic transforming the two into magical objects of tremendous power.

The Return and Rise of Vecna

Like any good lich, Vecna ​​didn’t stay “dead” for long. He continued as a spirit, extending his influence and corrupting those who were weak willed. It took several centuries, but Vecna ​​managed to amass enough followers to achieve demigod status of magic and secrets. Despite his new status, Vecna ​​was unhappy. He wanted more power than he had. He yearned for the power of a true deity.

Related: Dungeons & Dragons: Ways To Resurrect A Player Character

The newly created demigod made several attempts to access true godhood, with one attempt resulting in Vecna ​​being banished to a demiplane. However, that was not the end of Vecna’s machinations. Even in the realm of Cavitius, the demigod has plotted and plotted, formulating what may be his greatest plan.

Over the centuries, Vecna ​​began to siphon the essence of another demigod named Iuz, rising to the level of a greater god. Now a true deity, Vecna ​​has set her sights on Sigil, the heart of the multiverse. With her newfound power, Vecna ​​became the first deity to break through Sigil’s defenses, an action that caused great disruption within the multiverse.

Foiled once again

Vecna ​​was at its peak. He had unchallenged control over Sigil, a feat no other had accomplished, and the literal multiverse at his fingertips. He was in a position where he could rewrite or even destroy the world, and all worlds, at any time. At this point in its history, Vecna ​​was the greatest threat, and like any great threat in the universe Gary Gygax built, it was up to a ragtag group of adventurers to deal with.

With the help of Lady Pain, patroness and protector of Sigil, a party of adventurers entered Sigil and confronted Vecna. Despite his power, the Divine Lich was defeated by their hands, with Iuz’s essence stripped from him as he fled. He barely managed to retain enough power to remain a lesser deity. To this day, Vecna ​​continues to wander the realms, planning her next plan to regain her lost power.

Next: Dungeons & Dragons: classic endings for your campaign

4 things that are not mentioned in your credit report; find out here


Pay slips and bank account statements are often used to prove your financial stability. But, sometimes they might not be enough. In such cases, you may also be asked to submit your credit report to prove your financial strength. Therefore, it is common to be asked for a credit report for a phone connection, a new job or even at a wedding to assess your financial stability.

It is therefore important to maintain a good credit score, which depends on various factors ranging from repayment history, length of credit history to your credit usage. But do you know that not all financial transactions are part of your credit file. Here are 4 such transactions that are not on your credit report.


A credit bureau is regulated by the Credit Information Company Act with the Reserve Bank of India as the regulator. Any addition or deletion of factors that determine your score is governed by law within the jurisdiction of the regulator. Currently, investments like mutual funds, stocks, or insurance are not part of the credit score.

Transaction details on your card

It is important to know that transactions on your credit card are not part of your credit report. Where you spend isn’t shown on the credit report, but how consistently you make your payments is shown. Therefore, it is advisable to pay all your credit card bills on time, as payment history accounts for almost 35% of your total score on your credit report. Otherwise, to improve your credit score, you should maintain the non-overdue status for as long as possible.

Savings account

Your savings account information is not part of your report. So, if your funds are below the minimum account balance, it is not reflected in the credit report. These are the loan and borrowing details that are part of your credit score and report.

Utility payment details: Utility companies use credit bureau data for credit requirements, but utility payment details are not part of your credit score. Any failure to pay utilities is therefore not reflected in your credit report.