Which Generation Has the Best Credit Scores?

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Does being older make you financially wiser? Or do the youngsters have the advantage of learning from the big mistakes that damaged the credit of their elders?

We may not be able to settle the debate about which generation is best with money at your next family dinner, but we can tell you which generation has the best credit scores.

Thanks to new data from Experian, we can take a closer look at the latest average credit scores for each generation: Generation Z, Millennials, Generation X, Baby Boomers and the Silent Generation.

In this article, we’ll look at the data, try to decipher some meaning from it, and talk about how you may be able to increase your credit score regardless of your generation.

Experian Data Reveals Which Generation Has Best Credit Scores

Experian recently released the results of its Q2 2023 Consumer Credit Review, and tucked in there was some updated data on the average FICO credit score for each generation of the U.S. population.

And based on the results, it seems that with time comes better credit.

The Silent Generation, which is individuals who are 78 and older as of 2023, checks in with the top average credit score at 761.

The lowest average credit score belongs to the youngsters in Generation Z, who are averaging a 680 credit score as of 2023.

Millennials and Baby Boomers are the most improved generations, with each enjoying a three-point jump on their average scores from 2022 to 2023.

The average score across all generations is 716. That’s a slight increase from 2022, which saw an average score of 715. And the good news is that all generations saw an increase in average credit score year-over-year.


Here’s a look at the full table of data from Experian:

Average FICO Score by Generation

Generation (age range as of 2023)20222023
Generation Z (18-26)679680
Millennials (27-42)687690
Generation X (43-58)707709
Baby Boomers (59-77)742745
Silent Generation (78+)760761
All Generations715716
Source: Experian’s Q2 2023 Consumer Credit Review

Why Are Older Generations Enjoying Better Credit Scores?

It’d be easy to just say “the older, the better” after a quick glance at that credit score data. But the reasons for the results are almost assuredly more complex than that.

First, here’s a quick reminder of how a credit score is calculated:

credit score
Clark.com Credit Score Graphic

As you can see, there are a couple of key components that are time related: credit history length (15%) and payment history (35%).

It would make sense that older generations have had more time to get those sectors of credit evaluation in good standing.

Younger consumers are also more likely to have new credit (10%) and may not have the proper credit mix (10%) just yet because they’re still in the process of establishing things like auto loans and home mortgages.

Amounts owed (30%) also could be lower for older generations because they’ve had more time to pay loans down or pay them off completely. Credit utilization ratios could also be lower as a result of higher income for more senior employees who fall into the older generations.

Mix all of that together, and it makes sense that, on average, the Silent Generation and Baby Boomers are experiencing significantly higher FICO scores than Generation Z and Millennials.

Tips for Improving Your Credit Score

If seeing these generational credit scores has motivated you to get ahead of the pace for your generation, you’ve landed in the right spot.

Team Clark has several different tools to help you improve your credit score.


Take a look at some of these articles to ensure you’re taking the right steps:

  • Get a copy of your credit report for free. Money expert Clark Howard is a big believer in regularly checking your report for accuracy. Credit score models will be using the information on this report to evaluate you, so this will be essential to keeping your credit score on track.
  • Familiarize yourself with the credit score scale. Earlier, we talked about the factors that impact your credit score and we talked about average credit scores by age. But you may want to gain a better understanding of what a “good” credit score actually is and how you can get your score into that range.
  • Try some of these tips to improve your score. Credit expert Beverly Harzog gave Team Clark five tips to make a “sneaky” improvement to your credit score. Check these out to see if you’re implementing these tricks when possible.
  • Avoid these mistakes. Harzog also provided Team Clark with a list of mistakes that can ding your credit score.

Is your credit score better than your generation’s average? Are you surprised where your generation’s score ranks on the list? We’d love to hear your thoughts in the Clark.com community.