In its quarterly report on federal aid applications, loan disbursements, delinquencies, and other measures of student aid programs, Federal Student Aid (FSA) also for the first time provided a summary of borrowers deemed eligible to receive automatic closed school discharges for their federal student loans.
The new data summarizes the number of borrowers eligible for an automatic discharge as a result of their school closing between Nov. 1, 2013 and Dec. 31, 2019. In total, FSA found approximately 31,400 borrowers with loans totaling $347.1 million eligible for the automatic discharge. In total, about 30,000 of those borrowers have received discharges.
The report — which includes data from Oct. 1, 2019 to Dec. 31, 2019 — gives an overview of the outstanding federal student loan portfolio, which stands at $1.51 trillion, as well as new delinquency and default rates for federal student loans. Overall, the growth of both the loan portfolio and FAFSA application volume has decreased generally since 2010 and 2011, as new disbursements and the number of college goers have declined.
Meanwhile, the report found, new student loan default and delinquency rates are also generally trending downward. While the percentage of new defaulters ticked up slightly from this time last year — up to 1.6% of borrowers in repayment the previous quarter, compared with 1.5% — the overall new default rate is still lower than in previous years.