Is it true that Gen Y has more debts than other generations?

Now, the world is fully becoming “Gen Y” society. This consumer segment was born between year 1981 and 2000, representing 32% or a third of global population, which is the largest segment. 


The statistics from Department of Provincial Administration, Ministry of Interior, revealed that the size of Gen Y was as large as Gen X. Gen Y accounted for 28% of Thai population while Gen X was 27%, followed by Baby Bloomer 18%, Gen Z 21%, and Silent Generation 6%. 


Gen Y, born and raised among advanced technology, not only is technologically savvy and self-confident, but also has independent thinking. Living in the economic thriving period, Gen Y in working age earn pretty high income despite being young.


At the same time, this group has high expense compared to income. In other words, they often overspend. Having financial literacy, this segment is not afraid to create debt. However, it conflicts with their idea to become wealthy and have financial freedom. 

The Institute for Population and Social Research, Mahidol University, conducted the survey on employee satisfaction. The statistics revealed that 50% of Gen Y did not have savings, 48% made a late debt repayment, 45% had more expense than income, and 45.6% felt that debt installment was a big burden for them. 

Another interesting statistic from Bank of Thailand revealed that Thai people have created high level of debt since they were young. Many debts were non-performing loan and did not subside when they are about to retired. Most debts of young people came from credit card and personal loan. The latter one had high risk of default.


Now, let’s see which generation has more debts.  


New Personal Loan application in Q1/2017 

Credt card Prosonal loan Home loan Auto loan
Gen Y 56% Gey Y 41% Gen Y 49% Gen Y 46%
Gen X 33% Gen X 38% Gen X 39% Gen X 40%
Baby Bloomer 11% Baby Bloomer
21% Baby Bloomer 12% Baby Bloomer 14%


As you can see from the number of new personal loan application at the end of quarter 1 in 2017; the largest group in debt was Gen Y, with the debt ratio as follows - credit card 56%, personal loan 41%, home loan 49%, and auto loan 46% of total new loan. 


In the past, many agencies accelerated the solution to this debt problem by establishing Debt Clinic and Debt Training Project. Most people in debt are young and in working age. If they do not have a good financial plan, it will affect their lives in the future. 


So, if they want to live a happy life now and in the future, they must have financial discipline today and avoid unnecessary debt. If they are in debt, they must pay off the debt on the day they receive the salary as the first thing. Moreover, they must always set aside one portion for savings, regardless what kind of savings they are or how much the savings are. They have to do it monthly. As simple as that, the financial freedom will be within their reach.