Retirees Have Increased Their Likelihood of Holding Debt
Retirees have increased their likelihood of holding debt, finds research from the Employee Benefit Research Institute. The percentage of families with heads 55 years of age or older that have debt increased over a nine year period, from 63 percent in 2007 to 68 percent in 2016, according to the EBRI study.
The oldest families, with heads ages 75 years or older, had increases in overall debt and and saw an increase in the percentage with debt payments in excess of 40 percent of family income. EBRI also found 55+ families with credit card debt went up in 2016 from three years before, but the level of credit card debt remained about the same.
Americans who are recently retired or are just reaching retirement are more likely to have higher levels of debt than past generations, according to the study. The study says that means, “more families that have elderly heads are placing themselves at risk of running short of money in retirement due to their increased likelihood of holding debt while in retirement.”