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Debt-Averse Millennials Steer Clear of Credit Cards

Millennials are less likely to own a credit card than any other age group.

Millennials are less likely to own a credit card than any other age group. According to a new Bankrate.com study, 63 percent of individuals aged 18-29 don't own a credit card. This holds true for 35 percent of adults 30 and over, nearly half the number of the younger generation. Jeanine Skowronski, a credit card analyst with Bankrate.com, says millennials are debt averse because they grew up witnessing the Great Recession and have already faced struggles with student loan debt and a struggling job market. "Millennials may think they're staying out of financial trouble by forgoing credit cards, but they're actually doing a disservice to themselves and their credit scores."

Skowronski noted that more Americans, in general, are relying less on credit cards. "The population has become more credit card shy. There is debt aversion for all ages." There are many ways to build a credit score, but none as quick or efficient as owning and using a credit card. Good credit scores are essential for qualifying for jobs, mortgage and auto loans, insurance policies, and even apartments.

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