How the government shutdown could affect your wallet

Posted on: 3:30 pm, October 2, 2013, by , updated on: 07:04pm, October 2, 2013


OKLAHOMA CITY — The federal government’s shutdown could make life more difficult for Oklahomans living paycheck to paycheck, experts say.

This impasse could eventually cause interest rates to go up on credit cards, auto loans, even mortgages. That means monthly payments would go up.

To avoid higher interest rates, experts say switch any “variable” rate loan you have to a fixed rate loan.

Also, ask your lenders to let you skip a payment or two – extend the loan.

You could even take out a short-term loan to pay the bills.

Victoria Woods, CEO of ChappelWood Financial Services, recommends building an emergency cash fund in your bank in case you lose your job.

She points out several companies have announced plans to reduce their staff to avoid Obamacare penalties.

“The one thing you don’t want to do is miss a credit card payment,” FAA Credit Union CEO Steve Rasmussen said, “Because if you do miss those, your interest rate could accelerate. Payments would go up.”

The stock market suffered steep drops Wednesday morning – a volatile market could jeopardize retirement funds.

But Woods said after the last shutdown in the mid 90′s, the market shot back up more than seven percent.

Terry Bryce, the director of WIC, stopped by our studios to talk about the fate of Oklahoma’s WIC program in light of the government shutdown.