The Massachusetts senator's alarm-sounding on consumer debt neglects to measure it against the growth in the economy and the ability to pay.Economyread more
Equifax will give consumers a range of options for monitoring their credit or making claims of fraud or data misuse, part of a $425 million restitution fund.Technologyread more
Secretary of Education Betsy DeVos and her family have seen their investments skyrocket since President Donald Trump started enacting pro-business policies. Meanwhile, DeVos...Politicsread more
The construction industry is heavily dependent on Hispanic and Latino workers, a workforce that diminished during the last housing crisis and has not come close to full...Real Estateread more
A group of gold miners stocks, "BAANG," are better plays than mega-cap FAANG names, according to John Roque, technical analyst at Wolfe Research.Marketsread more
T-Mobile is choosing to move ahead with a merger with Sprint even though it will prop up Dish Network as a new, possibly disruptive fourth U.S. wireless competitor.Technologyread more
Danger is lurking in the stock market: An abrupt sell-off could be around the corner if the Federal Reserve doesn't deliver the rate cut the market expects next week, the firm...Marketsread more
Shares of Beyond Meat jumped nearly 10% Monday, nearing its all-time high, on investor optimism ahead of its earnings.Food & Beverageread more
Carl Icahn thinks Occidental Petroleum's CEO got played by the Oracle of Omaha himself in the company's effort to buy Anadarko Petroleum.Investingread more
The U.S. Food and Drug Administration has approved the first generic copies of a popular, pricey pill for nerve pain. The agency on Monday said it approved nine generic...Biotech and Pharmaceuticalsread more
Starbucks is licensing its mobile and loyalty program technology in a deal that will give global franchisees the chance to offer the Starbucks mobile app to customers.Restaurantsread more
A dozen Democratic senators introduced a bill on Thursday to overhaul the popular but challenged Public Service Loan Forgiveness Program.
The legislation, the What You Can Do for Your Country Act, would dramatically expand the pool of student loan borrowers who are eligible to have their debt canceled.
Sens. Tim Kaine, D-Va., and Kirsten Gillibrand, D-N.Y., led the bill, and Elizabeth Warren, D-Mass., and Bernie Sanders, I-Vt., are among the co-sponsors.
"The current Public Service Loan Forgiveness Program is a bureaucratic nightmare, and the Department of Education is failing to meet its obligation to help ease the student debt burden for our nation's public servants," Gillibrand said in a statement. Gilibrand is running for president in 2020, as are Warren and Sanders.
The current government program, signed into law by President George W. Bush in 2007, allows certain not-for-profit and government employees to have their federal student loans canceled after 10 years of on-time payments.
In 2013, the Consumer Financial Protection Bureau estimated that one-quarter of American workers could be eligible. However, the program has been plagued by problems. The bureau has since found that student loan servicers delay or deny borrowers access to the program by failing to provide them with accurate and complete information about its requirements.
As a result, many people in public service jobs believe that they're paying their way to loan forgiveness only to discover at some point in the process that they don't qualify for one technical reason or another. Often, their loan type or repayment plan was ineligible.
The Education Department recently released data on how many borrowers' loans it has forgiven under the program — just 206. More than 41,000 people have applied.
The new legislation would make all federal loans eligible for the program. Under the current law, borrowers in the Federal Family Education Loan (FFEL) Program do not qualify.
In addition, all federal repayment plans would be eligible for the relief. There are some 14 ways to repay your student loans, but to qualify for public service loan forgiveness you currently need to be enrolled in one of the four income-based programs.
The legislation also would require the Education Department to provide borrowers with better information about the program and to simplify the application process.
One of the most notable changes: Borrowers would no longer have to wait a decade to get relief on their loans. They could have half of their loans forgiven after five years.
That shorter timeline could bring more people into public service work, said Mark Kantrowitz, a student loan expert.
"People who might not be willing to commit to something for 10 years might nevertheless be willing to commit for five years," Kantrowitz said.
The overhaul may have an immediate cost of between $2 billion and $3 billion, and could increase the program's budget by more than $10 billion over the next decade, according to Kantrowitz.
More from Personal Finance:
What you need to qualify for public service loan forgiveness
Government may forgive student loans if you meet demands
Education Dept. fails on public service loan forgiveness: Senators