Bad Credit Report Can Hurt Your Job Search

For some job seekers, repeated rejection by potential employers could be traceable to an unlikely source: their credit report.

Regulators are cracking down on some methods companies are using to screen candidates, such as criminal background checks.

But employers’ use of credit checks during the hiring process is legal and fairly common.

Some 47% of employers conduct credit checks on job candidates, according to a 2012 survey by the Society for Human Resource management.

And one in seven job seekers has been denied work as a result of a credit check, according to a survey by Demos, a left-leaning think tank in New York.

Employers are more likely to check the credit histories of applicants for senior executive positions, for positions with financial responsibilities and for jobs with access to highly sensitive information. Some companies initiate credit checks when they are worried about theft and embezzlement, the survey found. Red flags include missed payments, delinquencies, foreclosures and liens.

Story by Jonnelle Marte for the Wall Street Journal.

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