CFED Scorecard

Financial Assets & Income

Outcome Measures

Income Poverty Rate

Asset Poverty Rate

Asset Poverty by Race

Asset Poverty by Gender

Asset Poverty by Family Structure

Liquid Asset Poverty Rate

Liquid Asset Poverty by Race

Liquid Asset Poverty by Gender

Liquid Asset Poverty by Family Structure

Extreme Asset Poverty Rate

Net Worth

Net Worth by Race

Net Worth by Income

Net Worth by Gender

Net Worth by Family Structure

Unbanked Households

Underbanked Households

Households with Savings Accounts

Consumers with Subprime Credit

Borrowers 90+ Days Overdue

Average Credit Card Debt

Bankruptcy Rate

Policy Priorities

Tax Credits for Working Families

State IDA Program Support

Lifting Asset Limits in Public Benefit Programs

Protections from Predatory Short-Term Loans

Additional Policies

Income Tax Threshold

Tax Burden by Income

Prize-Linked Savings

Paperless Payday

Trend Indicators

Change in Net Worth

Change in Asset Poverty

Change in Liquid Asset Poverty

Change in Consumers with Subprime Credit

Change in Average Credit Card Debt

Businesses & Jobs

Housing & Homeownership

Health Care


CFED Assets & Opportunity Scorecard

College Graduates with Debt

Reports & Graphics


Percentage of graduating students from four-year institutions with student loan debt, 2011.


For many low- and middle-income students, high tuition costs are a barrier to college entrance and completion and usually, students and families must take out student loans in order to afford postsecondary education. These loans can be a huge challenge to pay back, especially in the current economic climate. Many factors influence the prevalence of educational debt among college graduates. Although high tuition costs are often correlated with increased debt, this is not always the sole reason students take on debt. Other reasons include inadequate grant and scholarship programs, the cost of living or the student’s level of financial need.

This measure provides data on graduates from four-year public and private nonprofit institutions. Students at for-profit colleges are excluded in this measure, as many of these institutions do not report student debt data. However, national surveys by the U.S. Department of Education indicate that students at for-profit colleges often take on more debt than students at nonprofit institutions.

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College Graduates with Debt

StatePercent of Graduates
with Debt (%)
United States  66%   
Alabama  54%  12 
Alaska  —  — 
Arizona  49% 
Arkansas  56%  18 
California  51% 
Colorado  54%  12 
Connecticut  64%  30 
Delaware  —  — 
District of Columbia  52% 
Florida  51% 
Georgia  58%  21 
Hawaii  38% 
Idaho  66%  38 
Illinois  64%  30 
Indiana  63%  26 
Iowa  72%  45 
Kansas  64%  30 
Kentucky  60%  23 
Louisiana  46% 
Maine  71%  43 
Maryland  55%  17 
Massachusetts  65%  35 
Michigan  62%  25 
Minnesota  71%  43 
Mississippi  54%  12 
Missouri  65%  35 
Montana  65%  35 
Nebraska  63%  26 
Nevada  44% 
New Hampshire  75%  46 
New Jersey  64%  30 
New Mexico  —  — 
New York  60%  23 
North Carolina  54%  12 
North Dakota  83%  48 
Ohio  68%  40 
Oklahoma  53%  10 
Oregon  63%  26 
Pennsylvania  70%  42 
Rhode Island  69%  41 
South Carolina  54%  12 
South Dakota  76%  47 
Tennessee  53%  10 
Texas  56%  18 
Utah  45% 
Vermont  63%  26 
Virginia  59%  22 
Washington  56%  18 
West Virginia  64%  30 
Wisconsin  67%  39 
Wyoming  47% 


Student Debt and the Class of 2011. Oakland, CA: Institute for College Access & Success, Project on Student Debt, 2012.

"—" indicates that no data is available.

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