USDA dept. drops Direct Home Loan interest rate
Article from Steuben Courier:

Interested in a home loan that requires no down payment, no private mortgage insurance and offers low, fixed interest rates?
If so, the U.S. Department of Agriculture Rural Development agency’s home loan program might be right for you.
Direct Loan Program: The direct loan program provides government loans to low-income families or individuals. Borrowers must be able to afford mortgage payments, including taxes and homeowners insurance, and have a reasonable credit history. Direct loans are for 33 years, although 38-year terms are available in some cases. Payment assistance also is available for many qualifying borrowers.
Guaranteed Loan Program: The guaranteed loan program is administered in partnership with private lenders and is designed to assist low- and moderate-income borrowers. In the program, the loan is made by a bank, credit union or other financial institution, and Rural Development guarantees a large percentage of the loan on the borrower’s behalf. The guarantee enables lenders to offer more affordable mortgage terms. The loans have a two percent guarantee fee and this can often be rolled into the mortgage, enabling lenders to finance up to 102 percent of an appraised home’s value.
The First Step: Rural Development operates an extensive income and property eligibility web site at Pot…………………continues on Steuben Courier
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RBI cuts CRR by 75 bps; paves way for lower home loan interest rates and …
Article from Economic Times:
MUMBAI: Minutes after money market traders hung up their phones, the Reserve Bank of India unexpectedly slashed the cash reserve ratio (CRR) of banks by as much as 75 basis points, setting the tone for lower interest rates and easier liquidity.

Perhaps, it didn’t have a choice: next week’s industrial production numbers are likely to dip, high-street banks have been paying through their nose to borrow, and Rs 60,000 crore will flow out of the market by March 15 as corporates pay advance tax.

If the RBI had dragged its feet, it would have been forced to cut CRR – the slice of customer deposits banks keep as cash with the central bank – on March 15 with retrospective effect. Only once in the past has the central bank cut CRR with retrospective effect – something it wanted to avoid with the money market gasping for breath.

Friday’s CRR cut, from 5.5% to 4.75%, will immediately release Rs 48,000 crore into the system. While it’s unlikely to have a dramatic impact on liquidity and rates, it may improve market sentiment.

“It’s purely a liquidity-easing measure. Banks may not rush to cut lendi…………………continues on Economic Times
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