According to a study conducted last year and recently released by Princeton Survey Research Associates International, only 33% of young American adults between the ages of 18 and 29 possess a credit card. Reasons for not owning a credit card included previous personal financial problems or experience watching a close family member struggle with debt. Credit cards are most common with baby boomers, college educated consumers, and those with an annual income over $75,000.
This survey closely mirrors other data regarding Millennial access to and use of credit products. Younger, less-educated and lower income households are more likely to be underserved by traditional financial institutions. Further, 80% of 18 and 19 year olds in America are credit invisible, lacking the information necessary to establish a credit score. This research suggests the importance of alternative financial services, like the short term loan products offered by NAFSA members, to the underbanked, credit invisible Millennial workforce.