Money & The Economy

20 Percent Of Millennials Expect To Die Before Ever Paying Off Their Debt

One in five Millennials believe their only respite from debt will be death, according to a new report from Northwestern Mutual.

The Millennial generation, defined by this study as Americans between 18 and 34 years old, average $32,000 in individual debt, excluding home mortgages, CNBC reported Wednesday. More than 40 percent of the study’s Millennial respondents said they didn’t know when they would be able to pay off their debt, and 20 percent expected to die before they could. On average, they put 34 percent of their monthly incomes toward paying off debt.

The Millennial generation isn’t necessarily more cynical than others, however. More than 30 percent of those over the age of 73 expected to die before paying off their debt as well. Millennials, however, are willing to give up virtually anything to get rid of their debt, particularly their student loans.

Nearly half of Millennials said they’d be willing to give up ride-sharing services, international travel, or even the right to vote in the next presidential election if it meant losing their student debt, according to a poll from

The U.S. Department of Education wiped out more than $150 million in federal student loan debt in December, but it had virtually no impact on the vast majority of debtors. More than 42 million Americans owe roughly $1.33 trillion in student loan debt, according to DOE statistics.

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