Young Credit Card Users Are More Responsible Than Their Parents

October 22, 2013, Written By Natalie Rutledge

The common perception is that young adults are not financially responsible, mainly because they lack experience in dealing with money. But a recent study from Arizona State University suggests that college-aged credit card users are actually more responsible than middle-aged borrowers.

The results of the study showed that cardholders between the ages of 18 and 25 are the least likely to default on their credit cards, and they are most likely to develop strong credit profiles in the future.

The study found “young borrowers are the least experienced financially and, conventionally, thought to be most prone to financial mistakes. Our results challenge the notion that young borrowers are bad borrowers.”

This information challenges a portion of the Credit CARD Act of 2009, which prohibits applicants under the age of 21 from getting a credit card without a cosigner or proof of independent income. The study asserts, “We find no evidence that entry into the credit card market before age 21 increases the risk of financial problems later in individuals’ twenties.”

Furthermore, the study indicates there is a strong relationship between early credit card use and mortgage loans, meaning that young borrowers are more likely to own a home at a young age. Many college-aged cardholders use credit cards to build their credit, so they may access homeownership in their early 20s. Delaying the use of credit cards may push those individuals further behind in their plans.

“These students are the people who want credit, need to build up a good credit history, and have a steeply sloped income profile,” said Andra Ghent, author of the study. “If they don’t have a student loan, then a credit card may be the only way they can establish a decent credit history.”



The information contained within this article was accurate as of October 22, 2013. For up-to-date
information on any of the terms, cards or offers mentioned above, visit the issuer's website.


About Natalie Rutledge

Natalie Rutledge majored in Communications at Mississippi State University. She was in sales for a number of businesses and spent nine years working as a communications advisor to various entities. Natalie can be contacted directly at [email protected]
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