As millions of students across the country graduate from college and prepare to enter the workforce, many are ill-equipped to manage their finances and are making costly missteps that could threaten their future financial security.
College students feel least prepared to manage money
- Managing money remains the most daunting challenge for college students for the fourth year in a row, with nearly half of college students (47%) saying they do not feel prepared to manage their money
Student loans and credit card use is high; payments on these debts are problematic
- 6 in 10 students already have or plan to take loans to cover tuition; only 65% of borrowers plan to pay off these loans on time and in full
- More than 1 in 3 (36%) have a credit card balance of more than $1,000; only 51% plan to pay their credit card bill in full within the next year
Financial planning is low and is dropping
- The percentage of students planning to engage in healthy financial planning behaviors (i.e., balancing their checkbook, saving for an emergency fund, paying of student loans on time) is low, dropping significantly compared to the first year of the survey
Financial knowledge and education are low
- Only 35% of college students have taken a personal finance course in high school
- College students are desperately in need of education and skills related to personal finance management and future fiscal planning
Stress is high, especially about finding a job after graduation
- The challenges of paying for one’s education and engaging in personal finance management (often for the first time) can cause significant stress for college students.
These stress levels can impact their ability to stay engaged in their professional life, impacting productivity, pay and advancement.
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