SoFi Blog

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The Fed Rate Announcement: What You Need to Know

In our efforts to bring you the latest updates on things that might impact your financial life, we may occasionally enter the political fray, covering candidates, bills, laws and more. Please note: SoFi does not endorse or take official positions on any candidates and the bills they may be sponsoring or proposing. We may occasionally support legislation that we believe would be beneficial to our members, and will make sure to call it out when we do. Our reporting otherwise is for informational purposes only, and shouldn’t be construed as an endorsement.

Editor’s note: this article has been updated from its original publish date of July 29, to include new information.

In July 2019, The Federal Reserve cut rates for the first time since the financial crisis. Now, it has cut rates again—for the third time this year.

Americans may want to prepare now for some changes to their finances—especially since the cuts happened so close together. This action has the potential to affect savings, credit cards, student loans, mortgages, and investment portfolios.

Curious about how the process of cutting and hiking rates works? Wondering how the rate announcement by the Federal Reserve may affect you? Read on for a high-level overview of information that may be helpful as you plan for the near future and beyond.

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A Guide to California’s Zero-Emission Transportation Plan

In our efforts to bring you the latest updates on things that might impact your financial life, we may occasionally enter the political fray, covering candidates, bills, laws and more. Please note: SoFi does not endorse or take official positions on any candidates and the bills they may be sponsoring or proposing. We may occasionally support legislation that we believe would be beneficial to our members, and will make sure to call it out when we do. Our reporting otherwise is for informational purposes only, and shouldn’t be construed as an endorsement.

If you’re like most Americans, you own a car. What’s more, you use that car on a day-to-day basis to get to work, among other errands.

In fact, although we all know that public transit carries a lower ecological impact, car ownership is actually on the rise in America–which spells trouble for our warming planet. Indeed, transportation makes up the single largest source of greenhouse gas emissions in the United States, contributing almost a third of the carbon dioxide, methane, and other gases that are warming our environment.

That’s part of the reason four major, international automakers have struck a deal with the state of California to increase the fuel-efficiency of their fleets over the coming years, agreeing to produce vehicles that see nearly 50 miles per gallon by model year 2026.

The pact comes as a response to White House plans to freeze the more stringent nationwide fuel-efficiency requirements set in motion under the Obama administration, and was also, according to a joint statement, driven by the desire for predictability in manufacturing and lowering consumer costs.

Here’s what you need to know about the new agreement (and California’s greater commitment to environmental stewardship)–including what it means for you as a consumer–and how to find cheaper, greener ways to travel as a whole.

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Mortgage Rates are Low—Should You Consider Refinancing?

Waiting around for a good mortgage rate can make you feel a little like a ballplayer who’s been warming the bench—except there’s no coach to tell you when to get in there and play.

It’s up to you to decide if the timing and terms of any new loan are right for you.

If you’ve been sitting on the sidelines for a while, wondering when and if to jump in and refinance, you’ve probably noticed that mortgage rates are fluctuating with economic news but are still lower right now than they have been since late 2016. Simply put, right now the market’s hot, and it might be time to start the mortgage refinancing process.

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Your Grace Period Is Ending—Now What?

College graduation can be a wild time. You go from juggling your last term papers and final exams (and graduation parties) to managing a career, often in mere months.

This period may be one of the most glorious—and confusing—transitions in your life. There is so much to learn about being an adult, especially in regards to managing your money. And learning this stuff is not an overnight process.

For many college grads, a good first step to successful money management is understanding student loans—including a loan’s grace period. If you have federal student loans, you may even be in your student loan grace period now.

For those of you that graduated in the spring, student loan grace periods may soon be coming to an end. It’s important to start there: What is a student loan grace period? And what happens when that student loan grace period ends?

Here are some tips for managing your student loans for the first time, including ideas on how to make payments once your student loan grace period is over.

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HR professionals

Meet Debbie Westover, SoFi’s Senior Benefits Manager

With 59% of employees claiming money matters as their main cause of stress, this year’s trends in employee benefits seem to be focused around one particular concept—financial wellness.

According to the CFPB, industry surveys define financial wellness programs as “those that assess and support an employee’s ‘complete financial picture’ or the ‘overall financial health of an individual.’” To shed some light on this topic, we talked to SoFi’s own senior benefits manager, Debbie Westover.

Some of Debbie’s responsibilities include developing, designing, and administering employee benefit programs—making her a great resource on ways employers can satisfy the benefit desires of employees while still balancing their own financial and strategic priorities.

Here’s just some of what she had to say about helping employees reach their financial goals.

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