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Congress nears $900 billion stimulus deal that includes a second stimulus check: How the headlines could affect your money

"I'm cautiously optimistic we're going to see this $900 billion package released today."

U.S. Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell (R-KY) removes his face mask as he arrives for a news conference with other Senate Republicans at the U.S. Capitol on December 15, 2020 in Washington, DC.
Tom Brenner | Getty Images

Lawmakers say a stimulus deal could come Wednesday, investors wait on Fed news, and investment scams are on the rise. Here's how the headlines could affect your money.

Apple rises, and so do stocks

The major indexes all gained Monday: The S&P snapped a four-day losing streak and the Nasdaq hit a new closing high. Apple, which is part of all three indexes, rose 5% on news it will boost iPhone production next year.

The market was flat early Wednesday as traders digested news of a possible stimulus deal and weaker-than-expected retail sales. Wednesday afternoon, investors will be watching for the Fed's latest economic forecast. Economists expect its tone will be dovish, but any policy changes (or lack thereof) around its bond buying program have the potential to move markets.

"Somebody's going to be disappointed," Ian Lyngen, head of U.S. rates strategy at BMO, told CNBC. "I think it will be a tradeable event in one way or the other."

Suze Orman on how to use a second stimulus check

Video by Helen Zhao

$900B stimulus deal could come Wednesday

After Tuesday night negotiations, congressional leaders are reportedly close to agreement on a coronavirus aid package. The deal could include stimulus checks of around $600 for individuals and an extension of unemployment benefits, according to Politico

"I'm cautiously optimistic we're going to see this $900 billion package released today, and this will likely get passed before we go home this weekend," Sen. Steve Daines of Montana told CNBC's "Squawk Box" Wednesday.

Mortgage rates hit 15th record low of 2020

Mortgage rates hit yet another record low last week — their 15th such record of the year, according to the Mortgage Bankers Association. The average contract rate for a 30-year mortgage dropped to 2.85% from 2.90%.

Thanks to falling rates, refinancing applications are up 105% compared to last year.

Typically, it's worth considering refinancing if you can reduce your current rate by at least 75 basis points. But it doesn't always make sense, depending on factors like how long you expect to stay in your home.

Is now a good time to refinance your mortgage?

Video by David Fang

Watch out for investment fraud

The Securities and Exchange Commission warned investors Monday that it has seen a "significant uptick" in investment scams during the pandemic. Victims of such scams report a median loss of $16,000, according to an FTC analysis.

To avoid financial scams, be on alert for high-pressure sales tactics and overly complicated investments. It's also important to carefully vet any professionals giving you financial advice.

Words you've heard: Dovish

When analysts are anticipating the Fed's next steps, they often refer to it as one of two birds: doves or hawks. Generally, a dovish stance means its policymakers are unlikely to take strong action, and that they prefer to keep interest rates low to stimulate economic growth. 

Although the daily news can have an impact on your wallet, remember to take a long-term outlook when it comes to decisions on spending, saving, and investing.

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