The Out of Control Student Loan Industry

The rising costs of college and the student loan industry that fuels it has been the subject of much debate and deliberation recently.

President Barack Obama recently embarked on a two-day "college affordability bus tour," where he laid out his three step plan to "connect financial aid to school performance, support academic innovation and competition, and make college affordable," aimed to help ensure college is available to all young Americans.

Over the last decade, the amount of student loans outstanding has quadrupled, even in the face of student loan reform through the 2010 Student and Fiscal Responsibility Act. This seemingly out-of-control industry impacts student, private lenders, and taxpayers!

To see which companies are holding the majority of the outstanding student debt, click the slideshow below. Also, if you're looking for more information on the country's debt problems, The Motley Fool's new free report, "Everything You Need to Know About the National Debt," walks you through step-by-step explanations about how the government spends your money, where it gets tax revenue from, the future of spending, and what a $16 trillion debt means for our future. Click here to read the full report!

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  • Report this Comment On September 01, 2013, at 9:13 AM, Bev549 wrote:

    The cost of a college education has increased over 500% in the last 20 years. And the jobs are not paying. Union jobs are still paying well and skilled labor jobs (electricians, welders, etc.) are in high demand and also paying well. But employers are paying $12 - $15 an hour and requiring degrees for office jobs. College graduates cannot contribute to the economy because they cannot move out on their own. Low wages and high student loan debts keep them from doing so. The days of going to college WITHOUT student loans are over. Who has $40K - $80K to pay for college? The rich. As soon as the government took over student loans, Colleges only saw the dollar signs and they went wild increasing everything the possibly could. I know, my son is in college. Heck, they even charged him a parking fee for an online class he takes at HOME! It's got to stop somewhere!

  • Report this Comment On September 01, 2013, at 10:21 AM, peckbill wrote:

    How many educational loans for American college students, in the middle and lower class, would taxpayer money pay off if our government opted to eliminate foreign aid unless absolutely necessary; or, say for just six months to one year? Just think about it, wouldn’t it be better to keep the money in the United States of America than in the pockets of foreign powers; mostly foreign powers that will eventually use the same foreign aid money against the hand that feeds them; or, in the pockets of crooked politicians/leaders and greedy loan agencies that are money grabbing greedy Capitalists to their very core. We, the people, owe future Americans all the education that can be absorbed and use for a better America. America is currently running behind other countries in educating their young people.

    The government may need to add some incentives for those students who pursue degrees in things the United States needs the most, i.e., Engineering, Science, Medical, the Arts, Physics; do not provide incentives for degrees in such things as law, economics and the like; we currently have too many in these fields and the most of them are in government. We need some grass roots people in government so government will work as originally intended by the United States Constitution.

    American education should and must come first if America is to regain a positive posture in the world ranking of countries. Let us educate our young people to be true future leaders, in needed fields, that respect the Constitution of the United States of America. Raise the call “America first”.

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