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Please give me your thoughts on my situation!

Direct Loans: $8300 at 8% (variable), disbursed 1998.
Sallie Mae: approximately $9800, interest ranging from 8.00 - 8.89% (variable), taken out 1991-1994.

I've already gotten a letter from Direct Loans saying that my interest rate will go down to 6.79%. (If anyone knows why it's this and not 5.99%, please let me know). Haven't heard from Sallie Mae

I've made my past 36 Sallie Mae payments on time. Under their "Great Rewards" program, if I go one more year (for a total of 48 months) then I'll get a hefty 2% interest reduction. If I consolidate, I'll lose eligibility for this program.


Can I expect my Sallie Mae loans to go down, or will those remain at their current 8-ish range?

If Sallie Mae rates do go down, that means that in 12 more months I'd be eligible for a staggering 4% rate, right? In which case darn tootin' I shouldn't consolidate.

Am I right in thinking that the advantage to consolidation is that the rates will be locked in?

Many thanks to anyone who can help me puzzle this out!

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