Congressional inaction could end up costing college students an extra $5,000 on their new loans.
The rate for subsidized Stafford loans is set to increase from 3.4 percent to 6.8 percent on July 1, just as millions of new college students start signing up for fall courses. The difference between the two rates adds up to $6 billion.
It's a rate increase that lawmakers dodged last year in the middle of the presidential campaign between Barack Obama and Mitt Romney. But that was with the White House up for grabs.
Now? Student loan professionals say there's no urgency to block the increases, and they are advising students to expect higher rates.