All-Time High in Student Debt

In a poll released recently by the Pew Research Center, it was found that almost one-in-five of all American households had student debt, an all-time high. Up four points since 2007 that golden time before the Great Recession, the student debt gave low-income families another reason to call it great; the greatest portion of the debt per household income fell on "the bottom fifth of the income spectrum," says author Richard Fry "...even though members of such households are less likely than those in other groups to attend college in the first place." Households making less than $21,044 a year shouldered 24% of the burden per household income, with the next highest fifth, the middle fifth ($36,724-$59,623)  sharing 12% of the burden per household income.

When one looks at head of household age and student debt, fully 40% of households with a head of household younger than 35 owe student debt. For all income groups considered, student debt rose and the the richest fifth saw their debt per household income nearly double since 2007. These record highs are in the wake of an ever-increasing average student debt reaching $26,682 in 2010, which has been on an almost linear climb since 1989.
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