Once the go-to financial crutch for young people with a habit of spending beyond their means, credit cards are no longer as ubiquitous among youth as they once were. According to a study from consumer financial services company Bankrate, a whopping 67% of millennials don’t have credit cards.
According to Mike Cetera, Bankrate.com’s personal loans and credit analyst, millennials are “falling short in terms of credit card usage compared to their elders.” Among 30- to 49-year-olds, 55% have credit cards while 62% of 50- to 64-year-olds have them. However, Cetera explains, this decrease in usage isn’t necessarily the right decision. “A credit card shouldn’t be seen as taboo,” he added in a statement. “Used correctly, a credit card can not only provide the added benefit of points and rewards but also help establish a healthy credit score, which will be valuable for such things as a lease or mortgage in the future.”
According to Cetera, the reason millennials are shunning credit cards has a lot to do with the way in which they watched debilitating debt crush their parents. Another reason, he argues, is that millennials just don’t think they’re ready for the responsibility that comes with owning a credit card. “I heard from a lot of people that they know will need [a good credit score] someday but not right now, so it’s not a priority at this point,” he says.
Millennials also have previous student debt to contend with, which would only be compounded with the addition of a credit card. Finally, and perhaps most prominently, millennials no longer identify with the traditional tropes that go along with adulthood. As things like homeownership decrease among millennials, so do the things that go along with it.
Use your credit card to purchase this Wisteria Swedish Settee, and let us know if you still own a credit card.