Wall Street Journal prime rate

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The Wall Street Journal Prime Rate (WSJ Prime Rate) is a measure of the U.S. prime rate, defined by The Wall Street Journal (WSJ) as "The base rate on corporate loans posted by at least 70% of the 10 largest U.S. banks." It is not the 'best' rate offered by banks. It should not be confused with the federal funds rate set by the Federal Reserve, though these two rates often move in tandem. The current rate is 3.25% (as of 11/25/2014).

The print edition of the WSJ is generally the official source of the prime rate. The Wall Street Journal prime rate is considered a trailing economic indicator. Many (if not most) lenders specify this as their source of this index and set their prime rates according to the rates published in the Wall Street Journal. Because most consumer interest rates are based upon the Wall Street Journal Prime Rate, when this rate changes, most consumers can expect to see the interest rates of credit cards, auto loans and other consumer debt change.

The prime rate does not change at regular intervals. It changes only when the nation's "largest banks" decide on the need to raise, or lower, their "base rate." The prime rate may not change for years, but it has also changed several times in a single year.

Historical data for the WSJ prime rate[edit]

1990-1999
Date of Change Prime Rate
1991  
2-Jan-91 9.50%
1-Feb-91 9.00-9.50
5-Feb-91 9.00
21-Feb-91 8.75-9.00 (BofA)
24-Apr-91 9.00
1-May-91 8.50
13-Sep-91 8.00
6-Nov-91 7.50
23-Dec-91 6.50
1992  
02-Jul-92 6.00%
1994  
24-Mar-94 6.25%
19-Apr-94 6.75
18-May-94 7.25
16-Aug-94 7.75
15-Nov-94 8.50
1995  
1-Feb-95 9.00%
7-Jul-95 8.75%
20-Dec-95 8.50%
1996  
31-Jan-96 8.25%
1997  
27-Mar-97 8.50%
1998  
30-Sep-98 8.25%
16-Oct-98 8.00%
18-Nov-98 7.75%
1999  
01-Jul-99 8.00%
25-Aug-99 8.25%
17-Nov-99 8.50%
   
2000-pres
Date of Change Prime Rate
2000  
03-Feb-00 8.75%
22-Mar-00 9.00%
17-May-00 9.50%
2001  
04-Jan-01 9.00%
01-Feb-01 8.50%
21-Mar-01 8.00%
19-Apr-01 7.50%
16-May-01 7.00%
28-Jun-01 6.75%
22-Aug-01 6.50%
18-Sep-01 6.00%
03-Oct-01 5.50%
07-Nov-01 5.00%
12-Dec-01 4.75%
2002  
07-Nov-02 4.25%
2003  
27-Jun-03 4.00%
2004  
01-Jul-04 4.25%
11-Aug-04 4.50%
22-Sep-04 4.75%
10-Nov-04 5.00%
14-Dec-04 5.25%
2005  
02-Feb-05 5.50%
22-Mar-05 5.75%
03-May-05 6.00%
30-Jun-05 6.25%
09-Aug-05 6.50%
20-Sep-05 6.75%
01-Nov-05 7.00%
13-Dec-05 7.25%
2006  
31-Jan-06 7.50%
28-Mar-06 7.75%
10-May-06 8.00%
29-Jun-06 8.25%
2007  
18-Sept-07 7.75%
31-Oct-07 7.50%
11-Dec-07 7.25%
2008  
22-Jan-08 6.50%
30-Jan-08 6.00%
18-Mar-08 5.25%
30-Apr-08 5.00%
08-Oct-08 4.50%
30-Oct-08 4.00%
16-Dec-08 3.25%

See also[edit]

References[edit]

  • Various editions of the Wall Street Journal

External links[edit]