Tuesday, July 26, 2011

Some scary statistics about the US - revisited

In April, 2010, I had blogged about some scary statistics about the US economy. I revisited these statistics, and here are the results. While everyone is absorbed about whether the Republicans will agree to increase the US debt ceiling, let us revisit some statistics that looked scary to me in April, 2010. Let us see what has happened since then.
  • US National Debt has gone up from 89% of US GDP to 98% of GDP.
  • Total US Public Debt stands at $14.293 Trillion; by August, it will touch $14.3 Trillion, which is the current ceiling.
  • US GDP per citizen has actually gone up by a little over $1,100, in spite of increasing unemployment numbers.
  • However, US National Debt per citizen has gone up by $5,200 in the same period.
  • US Debt held by foreign countries has gone up from $3.875 Trillion to $4.584 Trillion.
  • US external debt to GDP ratio has crossed 100%. The equivalent figure currently for India is 21%. For the UK and France, this ratio is at a staggering 388% and 208% respectively.
  • Assets per citizen has gone up by $8,900 while Liabilities per citizen has gone up by a staggering $674,000. Similarly, Interest burden per citizen is up from $1,493 to $11,664.
  • There has been winding down of about 5% of currency and credit derivative exposures, but a much longer road remains to be traversed.
  • All-in-all, a dismal report card. For a Nobel Peace Prize-winning President who has got the US involved in a third senseless aggression in Libya, and so far failed to unwind its involvement in two other messy wars it has been engaged in for more than a decade. 

8 Apr, 2010
26 Jul, 2011
US National Debt to GDP (%):
US National Debt per citizen ($):
US GDP per citizen ($):
US Total Debt per citizen ($):
US Personal Debt per citizen ($):
US Interest Burden per citizen ($):
US Total Assets per citizen ($):
US Total Liabilities per citizen ($):
US Gross Domestic Product ($):
14.333 Trillion
14.809 Trillion
US Debt held by Foreign Countries ($):
3.875 Trillion
4.584 Trillion
US Government Bailout ($):
6.387 Trillion

Currency and Credit Derivatives ($):
648.975 Trillion
611.499 Trillion

  • One point about India: Gold is a bulwark against uncertainty. Indian Government's holding of gold currently is higher than all countries save 9; if the private hoard of gold in Indian families is taken into account, India's gold holdings would be at least twice that of any other country on Earth. Gold prices are at their record high of $1,600 and John Paulson (the hedge fund manager who made a killing in 2008 by betting that the sub-prime crisis would result in CDO/CMO defaults) says it will touch $4,000 an ounce in the next 3-5 years.

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