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Student Debt Now Affecting a Growing Number of Elderly Americans

Student Debt Now Affecting a Growing Number of Elderly Americans

“older Americans taking on student debt on behalf of their children and grandchildren”

The Trump administration would be wise to address the higher ed bubble sooner than later. The train is is heading down the tracks and picking up speed.

The Washington Post reports:

Student debt now affects a staggering number of elderly Americans

The number of older Americans taking on student debt on behalf of their children and grandchildren has quadrupled in the past decade, with consumers over 60 now holding $66.7 billion in student loan debt, according to a new report by the Consumer Financial Protection Bureau.

The skyrocketing cost of college has placed a particular burden on older Americans, many of whom are struggling to pay back growing debts in their retirement years, according to the report. Nearly 40 percent of federal student loan borrowers over age 65 are in default, the highest rate for any age group, the data show.

“Student loan debt is clearly an intergenerational problem, and what we’re seeing is that this is unfortunately putting older consumers’ retirement at risk,” said Seth Frotman, assistant director of the Office for Students at the CFPB. “Older Americans are struggling under the weight of student loan debt.”

Americans owe nearly $1.4 trillion in outstanding student loans. A slow job market recovery, growing income inequality and stagnant wages have made it difficult for younger Americans to be economically independent, and now there are signs that those financial struggles are dragging down their parents and grandparents as well.


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Also, since the federal government took over the student loan industry, these older Americans are also seeing their social security checks decrease with student loan attachments if they are in default (and many are).

The student loan industry should never have been taken over by the federal government. It’s really appalling, but as it didn’t affect that many people, few seemed to notice or care. Tuition costs skyrocketed with the government involved at the loan level. Maybe Trump will do something about this at some point (he has a lot on his plate atm).

The real problem is that college just costs too much. When I attended a California State College in the sixties, tuition was $20 per quarter, books were $100 per quarter, and room & board was around $500 per quarter. A BS degree in engineering could be had for well under $10,000.

    Anonamom in reply to snopercod. | January 23, 2017 at 9:21 am

    Yes, the costs have skyrocketed, but Fuzzy Slippers is correct. The costs have skyrocketed because of the federal government’s meddling in the system.