Study Reveals TransUnion’s U.S. Metro Cities with Best and Worst Credit

Study Reveals TransUnion’s U.S. Metro Cities with Best and Worst Credit
Mike Randall
By: Mike Randall
Posted: June 3, 2013 publishes personal finance studies daily to inform users of the latest news and trends in the subprime marketplace.

TransUnion, one of the big three credit reporting agencies, recently revealed their ranking of the U.S. metropolitan areas with the highest and lowest consumer credit scores.

The study was designed to show the estimated credit scores of an average citizen of that community rather than individual credit scores of all members of the community. Still, the results are quite interesting.

According to the study, the metropolitan area with the highest average score was found to be San Jose, Calif., at 700, followed closely by San Francisco at 696.

Rounding out the top 10 was:

  1. Madison, Wis.
  2. Honolulu, Hawaii
  3. Minneapolis, Minn.
  4. Bridgeport, Conn.
  5. Boston, Mass.
  6. Ventura, Calif.
  7. Portland, Maine
  8. Seattle, Wash.

“The metropolitan area with the highest

average score was San Jose, Calif., at 700.”

At the other end, the bottom 10 metro areas for average credit scores in this study was led by Memphis, Tenn., at 638, which barely lost to McAllen, Texas at 639.

The others areas, listed from the bottom up are:

  1. Jackson, Miss.
  2. El Paso, Texas
  3. Columbia, S.C.
  4. Las Vegas, Nev.
  5. Little Rock, Ariz.
  6. Baton Rouge, La.
  7. Lakeland, Fla.
  8. Augusta, Ga.

The study used the relatively new VantageScore credit scoring system rather than FICO scores to figure the areas with the highest and lowest rankings. VantageScore uses a scale from 501 to 990 and also assigns a letter grade to each range.

According to this rating system, anyone with a score greater than 901 receives an “A” grade, 801 to 900 receives a “B,” 701 to 800 gets a “C,” 601 to 700 ends up with a “D” and anything below 600 is an “F.”

According to Heather Battison, senior director at TransUnion, “Just as an individual’s credit score is a measure of the risk that consumer presents to a lender, our study calculated the credit score that would correspond to the risk presented on average by residents of various metropolitan areas.”

This is the first time TransUnion has conducted a study of this type, and the company says it hopes this will lead to increased consumer awareness of the credit scoring system.

Source: TransUnion. Photo source: