Obama pushes tax cuts, foreclosure fix

In Week 13, the president outlines his priorities in an important speech on the economy. Next week, Congress returns.

EMAIL  |   PRINT  |   SHARE  |   RSS
google my aol my msn my yahoo! netvibes
Paste this link into your favorite RSS desktop reader
See all CNNMoney.com RSS FEEDS (close)
By Ben Rooney, CNNMoney.com staff writer

100-day scorecard
100-day scorecard
Tracking Obama's unprecedented efforts to rescue the economy.
If you were a venture capitalist, which field would you invest in this year?
  • Green energy
  • Consumer products
  • IT
  • Financial services
  • Medical technology and pharmaceuticals
  • Nothing; I'd hoard my cash until the economy improves

NEW YORK (CNNMoney.com) -- President Obama continued to make the case for sweeping economic reforms this week as he approaches the symbolically important 100-day mark in his presidency.

In a major speech on Tuesday, Obama sought to explain his administration's efforts to simultaneously fight the financial crisis and build a foundation for future prosperity.

He also responded to criticism that he is attempting to do too much and defended his plans to make big investments in education, health care and energy.

Echoing comments made last week, Obama said he sees "glimmers of hope" in the economy. But he tempered that by saying "we're not out of the woods just yet."

"There is no doubt that times are still tough," Obama told students and faculty at Georgetown University. "But from where we stand, for the very first time, we're beginning to see glimmers of hope."

At the same time, Obama sought to frame the debate over how to right the nation's economy as lawmakers return to Capitol Hill next week after a two-week recess.

"All of these efforts will require tough choices. All these efforts will require compromise," he said. "But the difficulties can't serve as an excuse for inaction."

Congressional hearings are scheduled next week on the risks posed by large financial institutions and the role of local governments in administering stimulus funds.

Meanwhile, world financial ministers will gather in Washington this weekend for meetings of the International Monetary Fund and the World Bank.

100-day scorecard: Week 13. CNNMoney.com will continue to track Obama's first 100 days in office and keep score of the government's unprecedented efforts to fix the ailing economy. (Last week's article is available here.)

Foreclosures: Obama's loan modification program took a significant step forward this week.

On Wednesday, the Treasury Department named the first six banks to sign up for the plan, which aims to help 9 million troubled homeowners avoid foreclosure.

The two-part plan, unveiled in February, calls for servicers to reduce monthly payments to no more than 31% of eligible borrowers' pre-tax income or to refinance eligible mortgages even if the homeowner has little or no equity.

The government is allocating $75 billion to subsidize part of the payment reductions, as well as provide thousands of dollars in incentives for servicers and borrowers to participate.

Among the largest banks taking part: JPMorgan Chase (JPM, Fortune 500),Wells Fargo (WFC, Fortune 500) and Citigroup (C, Fortune 500).

Tax day: Also on Wednesday, the deadline for Americans to file income tax returns, Obama touted his tax cut as an important part of his plan to right the economy.

"My administration has taken far-reaching action to give tax cuts to the Americans who need them, while jump-starting growth and job creation in the process," Obama said in remarks at a Tax Day event.

Obama called his tax cut the most progressive in modern history, saying it will affect some 120 million families and put $120 billion directly into their pockets. It also will lift more than 2 million Americans out of poverty, he added. To top of page

They're hiring!These Fortune 100 employers have at least 350 openings each. What are they looking for in a new hire? More
If the Fortune 500 were a country...It would be the world's second-biggest economy. See how big companies' sales stack up against GDP over the past decade. More
Sponsored By:
More Galleries
10 of the most luxurious airline amenity kits When it comes to in-flight pampering, the amenity kits offered by these 10 airlines are the ultimate in luxury More
7 startups that want to improve your mental health From a text therapy platform to apps that push you reminders to breathe, these self-care startups offer help on a daily basis or in times of need. More
5 radical technologies that will change how you get to work From Uber's flying cars to the Hyperloop, these are some of the neatest transportation concepts in the works today. More
Worry about the hackers you don't know 
Crime syndicates and government organizations pose a much greater cyber threat than renegade hacker groups like Anonymous. Play
GE CEO: Bringing jobs back to the U.S. 
Jeff Immelt says the U.S. is a cost competitive market for advanced manufacturing and that GE is bringing jobs back from Mexico. Play
Hamster wheel and wedgie-powered transit 
Red Bull Creation challenges hackers and engineers to invent new modes of transportation. Play

Most stock quote data provided by BATS. Market indices are shown in real time, except for the DJIA, which is delayed by two minutes. All times are ET. Disclaimer. Morningstar: © 2018 Morningstar, Inc. All Rights Reserved. Factset: FactSet Research Systems Inc. 2018. All rights reserved. Chicago Mercantile Association: Certain market data is the property of Chicago Mercantile Exchange Inc. and its licensors. All rights reserved. Dow Jones: The Dow Jones branded indices are proprietary to and are calculated, distributed and marketed by DJI Opco, a subsidiary of S&P Dow Jones Indices LLC and have been licensed for use to S&P Opco, LLC and CNN. Standard & Poor's and S&P are registered trademarks of Standard & Poor's Financial Services LLC and Dow Jones is a registered trademark of Dow Jones Trademark Holdings LLC. All content of the Dow Jones branded indices © S&P Dow Jones Indices LLC 2018 and/or its affiliates.