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North Carolina’s Durham Graduates Have Highest Loan Balances


Many recent reports have ranked the states in accordance with the number of students who graduate with the most debt. A new report by MoneyWise has ranked 50 places across the United States with the highest average student loan balances.

With 48.8 percent of adults having a bachelor’s degree or higher, Durham in North Carolina ranked number one for highest student loan debt. On average, students there owe $47,955, which is 10 percent up from 2018.

Corvallis in Oregon ranked second with the average student loan debt of $46,164. The city is home to Oregon State University, which enrolls 32,000 students, including 5,400 graduate students. Ann Arbor in Michigan ranked third with the average student debt equalling $45,668.

Nearly 42 million Americans currently collectively owe $1.5 trillion in student debt, and 7.2 million individuals are currently in default on those loans. Borrowers of color are significantly affected by such loans.

A recent survey conducted by PayScale found that student loans are one of the top regrets for recent graduates with at least a bachelor’s degree. Across different generations, millennials rank highest with 28.8 percent regretting taking out their student loans, followed by 26.2 percent among members of generation X, and 13.4 percent among baby boomers.

Followed by Ann Arbor, Santa Cruz, and Santa Barbara in California, Gainesvillein Florida, Charlottesville in Virginia, Washington, D.C. and San Francisco ranked among top ten with average student owing more than $42,476 in loan debt.

Reports have noted that high student debt-ridden states are mostly concentrated in the Northeast and attributed high debt levels to less spending by the government on providing aid to the students, which remains below pre-recession levels.

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