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With U.S. student loan debt estimated at close to $1 trillion, the surge in delinquent student loan balances has brought increased attention from analysts and policymakers. In addition, the persistently high U.S. unemployment rate - now 7.6 percent - fuels growing concern that fewer full-time employment opportunities could trigger a wave of student loan delinquencies, providing yet another shock to the U.S. economy. This article explores the reasons behind the growing student loan debt and delinquency rate in the United States.