New federal data shows Washington now holds more than $1.1 trillion in student loans taken out by nearly 40 million people.
And that dollar amount is up by more than 112% since 2007.
But should student debt get blamed for a wide range of economic troubles?
Beth Akers says maybe not. Akers is a fellow at the Brookings Institution's Brown Center on Education Policy.
In her article, Akers says there are a lot of narratives about how student loan debt is potentially creating a huge drag on economy through reduced consumption, depressed home ownership, and lower rates of entrepreneurship. But she says it's hard to back up that blame.