July 08, 2015

Discover Survey Finds Millennials Aspire To Be More Financially Responsible

RIVERWOODS, Ill.--(BUSINESS WIRE)--Jul. 8, 2015-- Ninety-six percent of millennials who have credit cards consider themselves financially responsible, yet 44 percent of those surveyed have either missed a payment, paid a late fee, exceeded their credit limit or had to work out a payment plan with a credit card company, according to a survey commissioned by Discover.

The national survey polled 2,000 millennials between the ages of 18 and 32, including both credit cardholders and non-cardholders. The survey found that 80 percent of non-cardholders also consider themselves financially responsible, but only about 1 out of 4 knew their approximate credit score. And even fewer, about 20 percent, had checked their credit report or credit score in the last six months; while 37 percent of cardholders surveyed said they learned to manage credit responsibility by using credit cards.

“It is important that millennials be aware of their credit information because it influences how lenders, auto dealers and others evaluate them,” said Ryan Scully, vice president of new cardmember acquisition at Discover. “With our Discover it cards, we give cardmembers their FICO® Credit Score1 for free, alerts to help them manage their account and access to Discover’s Credit Resource Center which provides content on credit education and best practices.”

Other results of the survey showed that millennials are actively applying for lines of credit with 63 percent of those polled currently having two or more credit cards. Fifty-two percent of the millennial cardholders surveyed also believed that a first credit card should be obtained between the ages of 18 and 22.

When broken down further, 99 percent of those surveyed between the ages of 18 and 22 said they are aware of what a credit score is, and 50 percent of the age group believed that having a credit card helped them become more financially responsible.

When the 18 to 22 year old age range was asked to choose their top reasons for using credit cards from the following list, restaurants & dining out made the list 63 percent of the time, followed by:

  • Small daily purchases (coffee, snacks, etc.) – 62 percent
  • Gas/Transportation – 58 percent
  • Entertainment (movies, concerts) – 50 percent
  • Major item purchases (TVs, electronics, furniture) – 48 percent
  • Emergencies – 47 percent
  • Monthly bills – 40 percent
  • Personal appearance – (manicures, haircuts, spa) – 31 percent
  • Major life expenses (tuition, wedding) – 26 percent

The Discover it® chrome card gives cardmembers 2% Cashback Bonus at gas stations and restaurants, on up to $1,000 in combined purchases each quarter, which are two of the top reasons 18-22 year olds use their credit card.

To learn more about the Discover it® chrome card, please visit

To visit Discover’s Credit Resource Center:

The national survey of 2,000 consumers was commissioned by Discover and conducted by uSamp, an independent survey research firm (, in December 2014. The maximum margin of sampling error was ±3.25% percentage points with a 95% percent level of confidence.

About Discover

Discover Financial Services (NYSE: DFS) is a direct banking and payment services company with one of the most recognized brands in U.S. financial services. Since its inception in 1986, the company has become one of the largest card issuers in the United States. The company issues the Discover card, America's cash rewards pioneer, and offers private student loans, personal loans, home equity loans, checking and savings accounts, certificates of deposit and money market accounts through its direct banking business. It operates the Discover Network, with millions of merchant and cash access locations; PULSE, one of the nation's leading ATM/debit networks; and Diners Club International, a global payments network with acceptance in more than 185 countries and territories. For more information, visit

1 Your FICO® Credit Score is based on data from TransUnion and may be different from other credit scores. Limitations apply to the FICO® Credit Score for free benefit. See to learn more. FICO is a registered trademark of the Fair Isaac Corporation in the United States and other countries.

Source: Discover Financial Services

Derek Cuculich, 224-405-0665