PYMNTS and Sezzle Collaborate to Find How Credit Insecurity is Changing U.S. Consumers’ Borrowing Habits

Minneapolis, MN, April 27, 2023 (GLOBE NEWSWIRE) -- Sezzle, a leader in the flexible payments industry,  today released findings of How Credit Insecurity is Changing U.S. Consumers’ Borrowing Habits, a study conducted in partnership with PYMNTS. 

Sezzle and PYMNTS collaborated on a survey of 2,678 consumers conducted from February 22 to March 1, 2023. The survey assessed consumers’ borrowing habits and relationship with credit in regard to ease of access, variety of products available, and experience in applying or being rejected, as well as the financial impact of life events. 

Consumers were grouped into three categories: Credit Secure, Credit Marginalized, and Credit Avoidant. 

  • Credit Secure: Consumers that can reliably access new lines of credit. 
  • Credit Marginalized: Consumers that have been rejected for at least one credit product in the past 12 months.
  • Credit Avoidant: Consumers that did not use credit products in the past 12 months and have no interest in applying for them.

The last two personas (Credit Marginalized and Credit Avoidant) form Credit Insecure.  

Key Findings

  • More than 3 in 10 consumers are experiencing credit insecurity.
  • 25% of consumers have been rejected by at least one credit product in the last year.
  • Fear of being rejected keeps Credit Insecure consumers from applying for new credit products. 
    • 1 in 5 Credit Marginalized consumers did not apply for new credit products because they thought they would be rejected
    • 25% of these consumers also believed their credit scores were too low to apply for credit products
  • About 8 out of 10 Credit Insecure consumers report life events that negatively affected their financial situations in the last year.
  • Less than one-third of consumers have a good understanding of which activities can improve their credit scores.
  • BNPL users with a credit score under 650 are 60% less likely to have past due payments than a credit card user with the same credit score.
  • 47% of payday loan consumers currently have or had past due payments in the past 12 months, compared to just 18.6% of BNPL users.

The study’s key findings reveal that consumers exist along a credit continuum: Credit Secure consumers could potentially become Credit Marginalized due to adverse financial impacts from life events, and Credit Marginalized consumers are at risk of becoming Credit Avoidant due to a rising aversion to taking on more debt, leading them to eventually opt out of credit entirely. 

Companies looking to provide new credit products face the challenge and opportunity of expanding consumers’ knowledge of how products such as Buy Now, Pay Later can help improve their creditworthiness, empowering these consumers to have a better shot at escaping the downward financial spiral faced by so many.

This pattern of credit aversion leading young shoppers towards becoming Credit Avoidant is an observation that Sezzle identified in the conception of its Buy Now, Pay Later product. Sezzle’s payment solution provides the necessary building blocks and guardrails to earn shoppers’ trust while providing them with a better opportunity to access credit that will help build their financial future.

“This collaboration with PYMNTS is another step in Sezzle’s ongoing commitment to create a payment solution that serves the needs of those who have typically been left behind by traditional credit products,” said Sezzle CEO, Charlie Youakim. “Credit insecurity does not just mean a poor credit score - it gives definition to the millions of young shoppers out there who are wary of credit, but understand its necessity in their financial journey. We aim to understand what’s important to these shoppers and to bring them financial empowerment through Sezzle’s credit-building payment solution, Sezzle Up.”

For the full article and report on How Credit Insecurity is Changing U.S. Consumers’ Borrowing Habits, visit:

About Sezzle Inc.

Sezzle is a fintech company on a mission to financially empower the next generation. Sezzle’s payment platform increases the purchasing power for millions of consumers by offering a suite of financing solutions for cart sizes from $35 to $25,000 at online stores and in-store locations. When consumers apply, approval is instant, and their credit scores are not impacted, unless the consumer elects to opt-in to a credit-building feature, called Sezzle Up.

For additional assets and news on Sezzle please visit  

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Sezzle US Media Contact:

Erin Foran

Tel: (651) 403-2184


Erin Foran
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