The U.S. Senate and the House of Representatives have both unanimously voted to pass a bill that give military servicemembers who have recently returned from duty added protection from foreclosure, according to an announcement from U.S. Senator Sheldon Whitehouse, a Democrat from Rhode Island, who introduced the bill in May. S.2404, also known as the Foreclosure Relief and Extension for Servicemembers Act of 2014, extends until January 2016 a provision that sets one year as the time a servicemember's house is protected from foreclosure upon his or her return from active duty.
The Commission on the National Guard and Reserves had submitted a report that prompted the foreclosure protection extension from 90 days to nine months in 2008. The period was extended to nine months as part of the Servicemembers' Civil Relief Act in 2008 and lengthened further to one year in 2012 as part of a bill introduced by Whitehouse. The one-year period was set to expire at the end of December and would have reverted back to its pre-2008 level of 90 days at the beginning of 2015.
The Thomson Reuters/University of Michigan survey of consumer sentiment came in at a preliminary index reading of 93.8 for December, up from November's final reading of 88.8. December's report beat economists' forecasts by more than four points and puts the index at its highest level since January 2007. While the month's final index, due December 23, could see an adjustment, the latest reading is a positive sign in the middle of the holiday shopping season.