The dramatic rise in student loan volume is a worrisome trend for policymakers, but perhaps a more troubling one for banks and investors in student loan backed securities is a big spike in write-offs.

Between January and August of last year, lenders wrote off $13.6 billion in student loan debt, a 46 percent increase from the same period of 2012 and the highest amount for this period in any of the last eight years, according to the data from Equifax.

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