Distribution of Outstanding Federal Direct Loan Dollars and Recipients by Repayment Plan

Participation in income-driven repayment plans for federal student loans has grown dramatically in recent years. In 2017, 28% of the borrowers in repayment on federal Direct Loans are in programs limiting their payments to an affordable percentage of their disposable incomes, up from 13% in 2014.

Figure 10A: Distribution of Outstanding Federal Direct Loan Dollars and Recipients by Repayment Plan, Second Quarter FY2014 to FY2017

Figure 10A represents Distribution of Outstanding Federal Direct Loan Dollars and Recipients by Repayment Plan, Second Quarter 2014, 2015, 2016, and 2017. For a corresponding Section 508-compliant data table, download the Excel spreadsheet.

Notes & Sources 

NOTES: Includes Direct Loan borrowers in repayment, deferment, and forbearance. Because some borrowers have multiple loans, recipients may be counted multiple times across varying loan statuses. Income-driven plans include REPAYE, Pay As You Earn, Income-Contingent Repayment, and Income-Based Repayment. Level payment plans require monthly payments that are the same over 10 years or a different period of time. Under the graduated payment plan, monthly payments increase over time. The second quarter of FY2017 ended on March 31, 2017. Percentages may not sum to 100 because of rounding.

SOURCE: U.S. Department of Education, Federal Student Aid Data Center, Federal Student Loan Portfolio.

  • In March 2017, borrowers in income-driven repayment plans held 48% of the outstanding debt in repayment under the federal Direct Loan program, up from 27% in 2014.