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need to know
Drug lord ‘El Chapo’ may be tried in New York
U.S., Russia agree to Syrian cease-fire
CEO Jamie Dimon's $26M bet on J.P. Morgan
Uber to pay riders millions to settle safety suits
Zillow reports wider loss, drop in unique visitors
Oregon standoff ends as last four surrender
Google expands EU right-to-be-forgotten rules
FireEye earnings beat expectations
U.S. stock-market plunge paced by financials

5 things to know about the Costco and AmEx breakup

Boeing has long history of accounting probes
Boeing's stock plunge of historic proportions

Have central banks lost market credibility?

Google plans standalone VR headset

10 stocks leading the market’s decline Thursday
The stocks you need to fight off bear-market flu
Think like Warren Buffett — buy what’s ugly

Most popular new iOS emoji? Eye roll, please ...

One big Twitter question: Is the worst really over?
Buy Twitter? Only if you believe in management
Twitter message: Its critics were right

U.S. cities with the most and least vacant housing
  4 hidden hazards that lurk in your home
Location Scouts: Insider intel from top markets

Valeant’s M&A accounting cushions its income

Tesla predicts rosy 2016 —can Musk deliver?
Tesla reports loss, but says profit in sight
Tesla’s Model 3: 5 things we now know

Yellen in Senate: Stock swoon not Fed fault

Jobless claims data show no sign of a layoff spike

The greatest bull market of all time probably isn’t what you think it is
Greatest bull market ever likely isn’t what you think

Chuck Jaffe: It’s time for these trendy mutual funds and ETFs to put up or shut up
Time for trendy ETFs, funds to put up or shut up

Rio Tinto swings to loss, drops dividend policy
Total narrows loss on fewer write-downs
Glencore copper, zinc output falls on cutbacks


Jeb Bush says Trump would be worse than Obama

North Korea reportedly has executed top general

India set to outpace China in demand for oil
If you’re bullish on oil, these stocks are buys

Which of Europe’s Piigs might fly?
Which of Europe’s PIIGs might be set to fly?

The 10 toughest investment decisions

Bass issues warning on China’s foreign cash reserves
What’s holding back the world economy?
China's FX reserves drop $99.47 bln


Will falling oil prices bankrupt Saudis, Russians?
Cheap oil may make OPEC dominant again
As oil revenue drops, Gulf states ponder taxes
Will oil get so cheap, it won’t pay to extract it?

Hearing loss now hits 1 in 3 Americans over 65
Hearing loss now hits 1 of every 3 Americans over 65

REIT bonus targets at heart of Brixmor scandal

Even private-equity firms are buying back shares

Has the idea of college financial aid totally backfired?
Michael Moore: Imagine life without student debt
6 ways Obama would make college affordable


/conga/frontpage.html 367776

Markets »

172.07MDow Volume:
Avg Vol: 132.13M
Unchanged
147
Decliners
4753
Advancers
1612
Price Chg %Chg 1 Day
Range: 1 Day
  • 1 Day
  • 5 Days
  • 1 Month
  • 3 Months
  • 6 Months
  • 1 Year
  • 2 Years
Dow
/quotes/zigman/627449/realtime 15,660 -255 1.60%
Nasdaq
/quotes/zigman/12633936/realtime 4,267 -17 0.39%
S&P 500
/quotes/zigman/3870025/realtime 1,829 -23 1.23%
GlobalDow
/quotes/zigman/629063/realtime 2,037 -10 0.51%
Gold
/quotes/zigman/33772884/delayed 1,237 -11 0.91%
Oil
/quotes/zigman/2260836/delayed 27.55 +1.34 5.11%
FTSE 100
/quotes/zigman/3173262/delayed 5,537 -135 2.39%
DAX
/quotes/zigman/2380246/delayed 8,753 -264 2.93%
CAC 40
/quotes/zigman/3173214/delayed 3,897 -164 4.05%
FTSE MIB
/quotes/zigman/1482176/delayed 15,773 -941 5.63%
IBEX 35
/quotes/zigman/2759620/delayed 7,746 -397 4.88%
Stoxx 600
/quotes/zigman/2380150/delayed 304 -12 3.68%
Asia Dow
/quotes/zigman/6959860/realtime 2,406 -31 1.26%
Nikkei 225
/quotes/zigman/5986735/delayed 14,875 -839 5.34%
Hang Seng
/quotes/zigman/2622475/delayed 18,386 -160 0.86%
Shanghai
/quotes/zigman/1859015/delayed 2,763 -18 0.63%
Sensex
/quotes/zigman/1652085/delayed 22,952 -807 3.40%
Singapore
/quotes/zigman/1709939/delayed 2,540 +2 0.06%
Euro
/quotes/zigman/16008136/realtime/sampled 1.13 0.00 0.16%
Yen
/quotes/zigman/16008150/realtime/sampled 112.58 +0.15 0.13%
Pound
/quotes/zigman/16008140/realtime/sampled 1.45 0.00 0.07%
Australia$
/quotes/zigman/16008115/realtime/sampled 0.71 +0.00 0.11%
DXY Index
/quotes/zigman/1652083/delayed 95.67 +0.06 0.06%
WSJ $ Idx
/quotes/zigman/41508961/realtime 88.85 +0.09 0.10%
U.S. 10yr
/quotes/zigman/15866666/realtime 1.68 +0.02 1.34%
German 10y
/quotes/zigman/15866409/realtime 0.19 0.00 0.00%
Italy 10yr
/quotes/zigman/15866497/realtime 1.72 0.00 0.00%
Spain 10yr
/quotes/zigman/15866444/realtime 1.77 0.00 0.00%
U.K. 10yr
/quotes/zigman/15866328/realtime 1.30 0.00 0.00%
Japan 10yr
/quotes/zigman/15866525/realtime 0.02 +0.01 69.06%
Crude Oil
/quotes/zigman/2260836/delayed 28 +1 5.11%
Gold
/quotes/zigman/33772884/delayed 1,237 -11 0.91%
Corn
/quotes/zigman/25518691/delayed 361 +1 0.14%
DJIA F
/quotes/zigman/48241424/delayed 15,633 +21 0.13%
S&P F
/quotes/zigman/43106711/delayed 1,829 +4 0.23%
Silver
/quotes/zigman/32655632/delayed 16 0 0.56%

Quotes

Symbol Price Change % Change
FB /quotes/zigman/9962609/composite 101.91 0.91 0.90%
AAPL /quotes/zigman/68270/composite 93.70 -0.57 -0.60%
GOOG /quotes/zigman/59527964/composite 683.11 -1.01 -0.15%
BAC /quotes/zigman/190927/composite 11.16 -0.82 -6.84%
C /quotes/zigman/5065548/composite 34.98 -2.43 -6.50%
F /quotes/zigman/264304/composite 11.17 -0.17 -1.50%
T /quotes/zigman/398198/composite 36.21 -0.22 -0.60%
BP /quotes/zigman/247026/composite 27.64 -0.40 -1.43%
GE /quotes/zigman/227468/composite 27.45 -0.85 -3.00%
Visit the quote page and your most recently viewed stocks will automatically be displayed here.
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World News from MarketWatch

Rates »

5 yr CD
1.3%
2 yr CD
0.7%
1 yr CD
0.6%
MMA $10K+
0.2%
MMA $50K+
0.4%

National averages from Bankrate.com

You Don’t Need Another Credit Card, You Need A Better One.
Avg. APR Last Week 6 Months
Low Interest 11.96% 11.96% 11.62%
Business 13.12% 13.12% 12.85%
Student 13.42% 13.42% 13.14%
Balance Transfer 14.35% 14.35% 14.12%
Airline 15.17% 15.17% 15.10%
Cash Back 15.20% 15.26% 15.27%
Reward 15.25% 15.28% 15.14%
Instant Approval 18.02% 18.21% 18.00%
Bad Credit 22.56% 22.88% 22.73%
Source:CreditCards.com

SPONSORED SECTIONS

Trending Tickers
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  • /quotes/zigman/413712/composite USO+0.41%
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Pay Down Student Loans — by Shopping?

College graduates can now pay off their student loans by paying their bar tabs. That’s the marketing pitch for a debit card aimed at those saddled with loan debt.

Getty Images

But borrowers should tread lightly: They’ll have to spend a lot on clothing and nightlife before seeing any meaningful rewards, experts say. They also may incur high fees.

Launched Wednesday, the so-called SmarterBank Visa debit card offers graduates rewards of up to 1% on purchases, which are put towards their student loan balances. The size of those rewards will depend on several factors, including the purchases a cardholder makes – the more they swipe for, the more they can earn in rewards – and whether they incur one of the 20 or so fees the card — or the checking account it’s tied to — charge. The card was launched by SimpleTuition.com, a student loan comparison company, whose executives include former student loan lenders.

Though the first student loan debit card, it’s not the first product aimed at students sinking deeper into debt. The UPromise credit card, for instance, offers at least 1% back on all purchases, which cardholders can use to pay down their student loans. And more will likely roll out as student debt grows, says John Ulzheimer, president of consumer education at SmartCredit.com, a credit monitoring site. Roughly 37 million Americans have outstanding student loans, according to FinAid.org. Last year, 66% — or 1.8 million – of Bachelor’s degree recipients had student loans – a figure that’s expected to rise.

Here’s how the card works: Cardholders get 0.5% rewards for signature-based purchases of up to $100 and 1% on anything over that amount. (Regular debit-card programs offer 0.5% on average in rewards, according to Bankrate.com.) To earn enough rewards to make a dent in their student loan balance, cardholders will need to spend – a lot. Someone who swipes for $1,000 in purchases per month can get up to $10 in monthly rewards. The company says those rewards can lead to real savings: If applied to a 10-year loan of $8,500 at 6.8% interest, it could help a borrower repay that debt 16 months faster and save up to $1,500. But for the roughly two-thirds of students who graduate college with loans, which are projected to average $28,700 this year, earning $10 a month in rewards will shave just five months off their repayment period.

There are also fees. Cardholders will incur a $2 fee if they use an ATM outside the card’s network, while the average out-of-network fee is $1.41, according to Bankrate.com. Checking account fees include a $5 fee to get a copy of their statement and a “research fee” of $25 per hour if the cardholder wants the bank to review their account – something many banks don’t charge for, says Ulzheimer. Some of the fees are no higher than the industry average, says Greg McBride, senior financial analyst at Bankrate.com. For instance, there’s a $25 charge for insufficient funds, when the cardholder tries to withdraw more money from their checking account than they have. The average fee is $30.83, McBride says.

Consumer advocates say the idea of spending to save on student loans doesn’t make sense. “They’re using the flashy reward of paying your loans faster by spending more money, which is counterintuitive,” says Rich Williams, a higher education advocate with U.S. PIRG.

For its part, SimpleTuition.com says that the fees don’t impact the rate at which rewards are earned. The company says the SmarterBank debit card can be used in conjunction with borrowers’ overall plan to pay down their student loan debt. “They can get ahead and pay it down faster rather than carry it for 20 years,” says co-founder Patrick Kandianis.

Consumers who’d like to use earn rewards to pay down their student loan debt can consider alternative options. Community banks and credit unions tend to offer free debit cards, which also often have rewards. Another option is using credit cards, as fees have been dropping and rewards have been rising. Consumers who avoid interest charges by paying their balance in full could potentially earn more in rewards than they would with a debit card.

Comments

We welcome thoughtful comments from readers. Please comply with our guidelines. Our blogs do not require the use of your real name.

Comments (5 of 12)

View all Comments »
    • I had an account with Smarterbank (Bancorp bank) and they put a restriction on my account when I bounced a check AND didn’t tell me they closed my account while drawing interest on my refund check from school. Needless to say I prepay my bills and those checks bounced now I owe over $130 in NSFs to those companies! And they only paid $15 to wards my loans! Lesson learned….

    • I have one of these cards and did some research beforehand. I also kept my credit union account for my savings accts, rent and other bills.
      Here’s what I know about using Smarterbank:
      This is a debit card so, no interest rate. I have my existing checking account so I would never use the Smarterbank checks and therefore never incur the fees that go along with them. I got this card to pay for gas, groceries, bills I can pay with a card including my $200 cell bill, other household items, family trips, hotels, dinners out, etc…, etc… Do we not spend a considerable amount monthly to maintain our households? If you buy frivolous things, than so be it, but that is not what the company encourages.

    • The product is a checking account with a Visa Debit card. Its NOT a credit card.

    • my neighbor’s aunt made $14862 past week. she has been working on the computer and moved in a $587500 home. All she did was get lucky and use the guide uncovered on this link (Click on menu Home more information) lazycash33.cøm

    • roomate’s step-sister got paid $18728 the prior week. she works on the laptop and moved in a $426400 house. All she did was get fortunate and put in action the instructions given on this website makecash16. çom

About Real-Time Advice

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MarketWatch - Stock Market Quotes, Business News, Financial News
Bulletin
Investor Alert

Tokyo Markets Close in:

need to know
Drug lord ‘El Chapo’ may be tried in New York
U.S., Russia agree to Syrian cease-fire
CEO Jamie Dimon's $26M bet on J.P. Morgan
Uber to pay riders millions to settle safety suits
Zillow reports wider loss, drop in unique visitors
Oregon standoff ends as last four surrender
Google expands EU right-to-be-forgotten rules
FireEye earnings beat expectations
U.S. stock-market plunge paced by financials

5 things to know about the Costco and AmEx breakup

Boeing has long history of accounting probes
Boeing's stock plunge of historic proportions

Have central banks lost market credibility?

Google plans standalone VR headset

10 stocks leading the market’s decline Thursday
The stocks you need to fight off bear-market flu
Think like Warren Buffett — buy what’s ugly

Most popular new iOS emoji? Eye roll, please ...

One big Twitter question: Is the worst really over?
Buy Twitter? Only if you believe in management
Twitter message: Its critics were right

U.S. cities with the most and least vacant housing
  4 hidden hazards that lurk in your home
Location Scouts: Insider intel from top markets

Valeant’s M&A accounting cushions its income

Tesla predicts rosy 2016 —can Musk deliver?
Tesla reports loss, but says profit in sight
Tesla’s Model 3: 5 things we now know

Yellen in Senate: Stock swoon not Fed fault

Jobless claims data show no sign of a layoff spike

The greatest bull market of all time probably isn’t what you think it is
Greatest bull market ever likely isn’t what you think

Chuck Jaffe: It’s time for these trendy mutual funds and ETFs to put up or shut up
Time for trendy ETFs, funds to put up or shut up

Rio Tinto swings to loss, drops dividend policy
Total narrows loss on fewer write-downs
Glencore copper, zinc output falls on cutbacks


Jeb Bush says Trump would be worse than Obama

North Korea reportedly has executed top general

India set to outpace China in demand for oil
If you’re bullish on oil, these stocks are buys

Which of Europe’s Piigs might fly?
Which of Europe’s PIIGs might be set to fly?

The 10 toughest investment decisions

Bass issues warning on China’s foreign cash reserves
What’s holding back the world economy?
China's FX reserves drop $99.47 bln


Will falling oil prices bankrupt Saudis, Russians?
Cheap oil may make OPEC dominant again
As oil revenue drops, Gulf states ponder taxes
Will oil get so cheap, it won’t pay to extract it?

Hearing loss now hits 1 in 3 Americans over 65
Hearing loss now hits 1 of every 3 Americans over 65

REIT bonus targets at heart of Brixmor scandal

Even private-equity firms are buying back shares

Has the idea of college financial aid totally backfired?
Michael Moore: Imagine life without student debt
6 ways Obama would make college affordable


/conga/frontpage.html 367776

Markets »

172.07MDow Volume:
Avg Vol: 132.13M
Unchanged
147
Decliners
4753
Advancers
1612
Price Chg %Chg 1 Day
Range: 1 Day
  • 1 Day
  • 5 Days
  • 1 Month
  • 3 Months
  • 6 Months
  • 1 Year
  • 2 Years
Dow
/quotes/zigman/627449/realtime 15,660 -255 1.60%
Nasdaq
/quotes/zigman/12633936/realtime 4,267 -17 0.39%
S&P 500
/quotes/zigman/3870025/realtime 1,829 -23 1.23%
GlobalDow
/quotes/zigman/629063/realtime 2,037 -10 0.51%
Gold
/quotes/zigman/33772884/delayed 1,237 -11 0.91%
Oil
/quotes/zigman/2260836/delayed 27.55 +1.34 5.11%
FTSE 100
/quotes/zigman/3173262/delayed 5,537 -135 2.39%
DAX
/quotes/zigman/2380246/delayed 8,753 -264 2.93%
CAC 40
/quotes/zigman/3173214/delayed 3,897 -164 4.05%
FTSE MIB
/quotes/zigman/1482176/delayed 15,773 -941 5.63%
IBEX 35
/quotes/zigman/2759620/delayed 7,746 -397 4.88%
Stoxx 600
/quotes/zigman/2380150/delayed 304 -12 3.68%
Asia Dow
/quotes/zigman/6959860/realtime 2,406 -31 1.26%
Nikkei 225
/quotes/zigman/5986735/delayed 14,875 -839 5.34%
Hang Seng
/quotes/zigman/2622475/delayed 18,385 -161 0.87%
Shanghai
/quotes/zigman/1859015/delayed 2,763 -18 0.63%
Sensex
/quotes/zigman/1652085/delayed 22,952 -807 3.40%
Singapore
/quotes/zigman/1709939/delayed 2,540 +2 0.06%
Euro
/quotes/zigman/16008136/realtime/sampled 1.13 0.00 0.16%
Yen
/quotes/zigman/16008150/realtime/sampled 112.58 +0.15 0.13%
Pound
/quotes/zigman/16008140/realtime/sampled 1.45 0.00 0.07%
Australia$
/quotes/zigman/16008115/realtime/sampled 0.71 +0.00 0.11%
DXY Index
/quotes/zigman/1652083/delayed 95.67 +0.06 0.07%
WSJ $ Idx
/quotes/zigman/41508961/realtime 88.85 +0.09 0.10%
U.S. 10yr
/quotes/zigman/15866666/realtime 1.68 +0.02 1.34%
German 10y
/quotes/zigman/15866409/realtime 0.19 0.00 0.00%
Italy 10yr
/quotes/zigman/15866497/realtime 1.72 0.00 0.00%
Spain 10yr
/quotes/zigman/15866444/realtime 1.77 0.00 0.00%
U.K. 10yr
/quotes/zigman/15866328/realtime 1.30 0.00 0.00%
Japan 10yr
/quotes/zigman/15866525/realtime 0.02 +0.01 69.06%
Crude Oil
/quotes/zigman/2260836/delayed 28 +1 5.11%
Gold
/quotes/zigman/33772884/delayed 1,237 -11 0.91%
Corn
/quotes/zigman/25518691/delayed 361 +1 0.14%
DJIA F
/quotes/zigman/48241424/delayed 15,633 +21 0.13%
S&P F
/quotes/zigman/43106711/delayed 1,829 +4 0.23%
Silver
/quotes/zigman/32655632/delayed 16 0 0.56%

Quotes

Symbol Price Change % Change
FB /quotes/zigman/9962609/composite 101.91 0.91 0.90%
AAPL /quotes/zigman/68270/composite 93.70 -0.57 -0.60%
GOOG /quotes/zigman/59527964/composite 683.11 -1.01 -0.15%
BAC /quotes/zigman/190927/composite 11.16 -0.82 -6.84%
C /quotes/zigman/5065548/composite 34.98 -2.43 -6.50%
F /quotes/zigman/264304/composite 11.17 -0.17 -1.50%
T /quotes/zigman/398198/composite 36.21 -0.22 -0.60%
BP /quotes/zigman/247026/composite 27.64 -0.40 -1.43%
GE /quotes/zigman/227468/composite 27.45 -0.85 -3.00%
Visit the quote page and your most recently viewed stocks will automatically be displayed here.
Please log in to view your watchlist
MarketWatch Portfolio

World News from MarketWatch

Rates »

5 yr CD
1.3%
2 yr CD
0.7%
1 yr CD
0.6%
MMA $10K+
0.2%
MMA $50K+
0.4%

National averages from Bankrate.com

You Don’t Need Another Credit Card, You Need A Better One.
Avg. APR Last Week 6 Months
Low Interest 11.96% 11.96% 11.62%
Business 13.12% 13.12% 12.85%
Student 13.42% 13.42% 13.14%
Balance Transfer 14.35% 14.35% 14.12%
Airline 15.17% 15.17% 15.10%
Cash Back 15.20% 15.26% 15.27%
Reward 15.25% 15.28% 15.14%
Instant Approval 18.02% 18.21% 18.00%
Bad Credit 22.56% 22.88% 22.73%
Source:CreditCards.com

SPONSORED SECTIONS

Trending Tickers
  • /quotes/zigman/21587200/composite FEYE-0.48%
  • /quotes/zigman/17430636/composite SUNE-13.56%
  • /quotes/zigman/35596893/composite CYBR+2.14%
  • /quotes/zigman/413712/composite USO+0.41%
  • /quotes/zigman/714403/composite SPY-1.30%
X
Powered by StockTwits
Link to MarketWatch's Slice.

As of July 2, 2013, the SmartMoney content you loved now lives on MarketWatch.

MarketWatch will continue to provide the same important news and information you rely on every day. And, as a MarketWatch user, you will be able to enjoy:

  • Personalized news and quote email alerts
  • Editorial e-newsletters about personal finance, mutual funds and market-specific coverage
  • Premium newsletters by our market experts
  • Games, such as Virtual Stock Exchange and Beat the Darts
  • Free WSJ.com registration