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Infographic: Credit report errors hit less-educated harder

Summary

Are those with less education more likely to be victimized by credit report errors? That’s what a report issued by the Federal Trade Commission suggests

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Are those with less education more likely to be victimized by credit report errors? That’s what a first-of-its-kind report issued Feb. 11 by the Federal Trade Commission suggests.

Of people with at least some college education, 20 percent or fewer had confirmed credit report errors. For those with a high school education, it was worse: Nearly 30 percent had errors. Worse still, nearly 20 percent those with a high school education or less had errors big enough to cause credit score changes. Just about 12 percent of those with at least some college education had those kinds of errors.

Why the significant difference? The Fed researchers didn’t look at that question directly, but they speculated that less education is correlated with lower incomes and fewer liquid assets, meaning those with less education may rely on credit more than their higher-income counterparts. That means more entries on a credit report — and more room for error.

Also, those who need credit have more to lose if their credit application gets turned down. So, they’re more likely to find and identify errors in their reports, unlike their wealthier counterparts, who have the luxury of not noticing errors for a while. That could be why those with less education (who may rely more on credit) have more confirmed errors.

Credit report errors
See related:1 in 5 Americans has a mistake in credit report

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