In just the third and fourth quarters of last year, there were around $166.4 billion in student loan delinquencies that have been in default for 90 days or more, according to the Federal Reserve, the United States' central bank. Steve Beaman, a financial analyst for the Florida Radio Network, the chairman of the McGraw Council, and the author of The Path to Prosperity said this is horrible news for the economy. "The alarms bells are going off," Beaman said. "If we don't do something about it quickly, it could possibly have a negative effect on the U.S. economy, hurt people's economic life and have an adverse reaction to their credit score," Beaman said.
Jack Hough, a senior editor for Barron's, also insisted this is a problem. "Let's artificially puff up buying power with cheap (college) loans and it makes it even less affordable," Hough said. Free college isn't much of a solution either. The problem with the cost of a college education is that money is easily available to be borrowed (or in the case of government-funded "free" college, stolen) in order to be paid.