In the United States, debt is a huge aspect of the economy.
This is especially true for millennials, the largest living generation, who are entering their prime years of earning and spending – all while carrying massive amounts of debt.
As the cost of living in the U.S. increases, Americans are taking on more debt.
- The average American owes $5,473 in credit card debt
- The average American borrower has $27,975 in student loan debt
- The average American has $201,8011 of mortgage debt
LendEDU surveyed 1,000 American millennials, split evenly between three income brackets ($49,999 or lower; $50,000 to $99,999; $100,000 or higher) with questions related to the types and amounts of debt they carry. All 1,000 respondents were between the ages of 23 and 38.
The results – startling.
Many members of the millennial generation carry all types of debt, a lot of it, across all income levels. High levels of debt reach everyone regardless of how much money they make.
Credit card debt is the most prevalent type of debt amongst millennials. Overall, 50 percent of those surveyed had some amount of credit card debt with an average balance of $6,206. Surprisingly, millennial participants in the lowest income brackets were the least likely to have credit card debt.
The next most common type of debt was miscellaneous debt (personal loan, auto loan debt, or medical debt) held by 43 percent of all millennial respondents. High-income members of the average of $16,521 in miscellaneous debt, while middle-income and low-income millennials had an average of $15,559 and $8,671.
Millennials showed similar proportions of student loan debt across all income brackets; high-income respondents averaged $48,451; middle-income respondents averaged $36,077, and low-income respondents averaged $36,077.
The greatest millennial earners were also the greatest millennial debtors. In every single category surveyed, millennials that made $100,000 or more had the highest average amount of debt.
Overall, debt among millennials is widespread and prevalent, regardless of class. Should an economic downturn hit, millennials could be looking at financial trouble. As the largest living generation, these potential problems could have larger implications for the economy.