Here are the best articles from around the web this week talking about student loans…

For the week ending Friday January 31, 2014

Student Loan News:

1. Why Banks Shouldn't Write off the Student Loan Market: 

As I read “Worrisome Spike in Student Loan Write-Offs” in the January 2, 2014 American Banker, I realized this data rich account told only part of the story. There is another dimension worth telling.

The “stubbornly high rate of student loan delinquencies” and write-offs cited in the story combined both private and federal student loans, which is like throwing apples and oranges in the same bag. It may work at the grocery store, but it doesn't make for a useful comparison. Full article:

College Student Loan

2. Should You Consolidate Your Student Loan Debt? 

If you're making separate student loan payments on each of your five or 10 student loans, you may want to consider consolidating your loans. Student loan consolidation can help get rid of the headache caused by keeping all those payments straight.

But even though student loan consolidation streamlines your student loan repayment, it might not be the best option for you. Before applying for a consolidation loan with the Department of Education, you should know the advantages and disadvantages of student loan consolidation. Read review:

3. Will Congress turn its back on students? 

Becky Gaul holds $96,000 of student loan debt. Her salary as a public school teacher for Nevada’s Clark County is about half that amount. Becky was raised in a household of little means in Ohio, but her single mother encouraged her to dream big. Becky qualified for scholarships, but when they weren’t enough to cover her tuition at the University of Akron, she turned to student loans.

Ten years later, Becky, now 32, is still struggling under the crippling weight of those loans. She manages to make payments with the help of her husband, who works in construction, but recent job cuts at his company have terrified the couple. From this source:

Student Loan Blog Posts:

1. Teaching Tolerance magazine examines impact of student loan practices on most vulnerable college students:

Recent policy changes affecting student loans, coupled with the skyrocketing cost of attending college, are creating financial traps for the most vulnerable students and their families, leaving many students drowning in unmanageable debt even if they fail to get a degree, according to the latest issue of Teaching Tolerance magazine, released today by the Southern Poverty Law Center.

The cover story of the Spring 2014 issue – “Drowning in Debt” – examines the disproportionate impact of student loan debt, and predatory lending practices on students of color, children of immigrants and first-generation college students. Go there:

2. The Best Way to Approach Student Loan Debt: 

Money management can be a tricky subject.

Everyone’s situation is unique, but there are a lot of situations that are similar and can often be an issue of debate on how best to handle them.

For instance, let’s say that someone has $50,000 in savings in a bank account (with no other significant savings and assets) and also has $50,000 in student loan debt. Should the person use the savings to pay off the student loan debt?

From a numbers standpoint, it is far better to pay off the debt, assuming that the interest rate is higher than what the money would be earning in the bank. At today’s rates, it would be safe to assume that the interest rate on the debt will be higher. More tips here:

3. Wealthy students get grants intended for poor through divorce loophole: 

University students from wealthy backgrounds are being awarded grants and generous loans designed for Britain's poorest families after ministers allowed high-earning divorcees to avoid joint income calculations when fees were trebled in 2012.

The loophole means around 25% of university students have qualified for £3,200 grants even though only a fraction of them come from poor households.

Ministers have spent recent months discussing how to cap the spiralling £1.4bn bill for grants. The Department for Business, Innovation and Skills (BIS), which oversees university funding, is under pressure to make cuts after a series of overspends. Official statement: Around The Web: