Public Debt of the World

The National Debt Dilemma
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The views expressed in this article are those of the author alone and not the World Economic Forum. I accept. Jeff Desjardins Founder and editor, Visual Capitalist. Predictions for What if we get things right? Read the series. Most Popular. Britain's Brexit election is its most volatile in memory - and 3 other superlatives about the snap poll Robin Pomeroy 04 Nov More on the agenda. Explore context. Thus, with the help of program credits, import bottlenecks are eliminated and the economy is kept in working condition.

Therefore, it is a credit that is demanded more by developing countries. Tied loans refer to the credit that should be used in the country which gave the credit. In this case, the debtor country does not have the authority to spend the credit on its own request. Nowadays this feature of loans granted by developed countries generates to establish the system that is working in favor of the lender countries. Thus, the creditor country has provided advantages such as new foreign market, export growth, employment increase, and technology transfer.

In terms of the debtor country, the situation is not bright at all. Hence, countries that receive loans remain under heavy debt burden. Soft loans are credits that granted the free use of developing countries. Thus, the debtor countries can provide the goods and services necessary for development financing from the international market in the cheapest way. Debt postponement is to postpone debt payment for an expired credit to a later date in return for a lower rate of interest compared to the first interest rate. Refinancing credits are to pay an expired debt by the creditor country with the same amount of a new loan a new debt.

The main reason for creditor countries to accept debt postponement and refinancing credits is to enable them to accept some new commitments to the debtor country with these instruments. Borrowing has an important place among the public revenues, so its political, economic, and social impacts have great importance. The political effects of public borrowing are handled within the framework of political business cycle theory. According to theory, public expenditures increase during the election period. The government with the vote worry increases the public investments, but prefer to finance these public expenditures with internal borrowing instead of tax or emissions.

In the short and medium term, governments, that do not want to seem repellent for voters, transfer the debt principal and interest payments to the next governments in the long term. This situation brings along the debt burden, which is often worsening with an alternative to closing debt with debt in developing countries [ 15 ]. Economic and social effects of borrowing take place in different ways in the following condition [ 4 , 8 ]: To be long- or short-term maturity. The long-term or short-term maturity of public borrowing determines the duration of the contraction or expansionary effects.

In this respect, the short-term borrowing changes the economic conjuncture frequently, because of the more liquidity and monetization feature of short-term debt instruments. If the resources obtained by borrowing are expended, it causes an expansionary effect; if the resources obtained by borrowing are not expended, it causes a contractionary effect [ 4 ].

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In order to provide the expected results of debt policies i. At this point, the source of the public debt and the place where it is used gain importance [ 2 , 4 , 5 , 8 , 14 , 16 ]: The effect of public debt on the general level of prices: It is true that borrowing will create a deflationary effect only when it is considered as a bond sale.

Because the private sector uses its own resources for buying public bonds, therefore, the private demand and the total demand are decreasing.

This situation causes deflation by reducing the general level of prices. However, the state purchases goods and services with the resources that are collected from the sale of bonds or bills; thus the total demand increases due to public demand. This situation causes inflation by increasing the general level of prices as a result of the operation of various mechanisms.

The effect of public debt on income distribution: The effect of public debt on income distribution depends on which income groups burden with debt costs and depends on which income groups are the obtained debt sources transferred to.

This effect usually occurs during the principal and interest repayments. In particular in the internal borrowing, if the taxpayers and the lenders to the government are the same person or organization, there will be no inequality in the income distribution. However, vice versa, if the principal and interest payments related to public debt are paid by taxes collected from the middle- to low-income groups, then there is a transfer of resources from the middle- and low-income groups to the high-income group.

This situation causes income distribution, the detriment of the middle- and low-income group, to deteriorate. In terms of external borrowing, the income distribution to favor of those beneficiaries from public expenditures in the period which they were taken was effected by the external debts positively. On the other hand, the external borrowing will affect the income distribution for next generation due to the debt burden adversely such as the reduction of public expenditures and excessive tax payment.

Total public debt worldwide, 2005-2017

The effect of public debts on income distribution also points to the social impact of public borrowing. The effect of public debts on savings volume and investments: As long as the government canalizes to investing the savings that are collected by the way of internal borrowing, national income will increase, and personal income and personal savings tendency will increase. This event is called crowding out.

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The slowdown of national income growth as a result of the decrease in investments shows the real burden of the financing with borrowing instead of tax on the next generation. When debt is used to finance public expenditure, its real cost to society is the sacrifice in private sector production [ 17 ]. The effect of public debts on economic development: if the funds provided through borrowing for economic development can be canalized to infrastructure investments such as dams, roads, ports, mining, agriculture , they increase the new investments through multiplier effect.

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These are lists of countries by public debt, based on data from the CIA's World Factbook and the IMF. Net debt figure is the cumulative total of all government. Public debt compares the cumulative total of all government borrowings less repayments that are denominated in a country's home currency. Public debt should.

As a result, national income and employment increase; and accordingly economic development is ensured. Nowadays, less developed and developing countries, which make the development effort, resort to external borrowing due to insufficient internal financing sources. If the aforementioned countries do not use external financing sources in the required fields, this situation may turn into debt financing by debt. This situation also shows the importance of debt management. The phenomenon of globalization, which extends to geographical discoveries by origin, has gained momentum with the process of commercial and financial liberalization in the last quarter of the twentieth century.

In this process, the globalization of capital, in particular, has dragged the developing countries, which have entered into a growth effort based on foreign capital, to the competition of encouragement with high real interest rates, low exchange rates, and low tax rates. Increasing tax competition among developing countries led to a decrease in tax rates. The inadequate tax revenues for the financing of the increased public expenditures in these countries brought the need for new borrowing for the agenda.

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The application of high real interest rates to pay new debt principal and interest led to a rapid rise in the borrowing costs of developing countries and consequently a vicious cycle of debt-interest. Thus, the external borrowing process that developing countries started to finance development has undergone structural change. In this process, the method of closing the old debt with new debt Ponzi-type financing was adopted [ 18 ] Figure 2.

Public debt total and domestic debt of all economies, as a percentage of GDP — [21]. Developing countries, which cannot overcome the lack of resources, have faced severe crises due to their fragile market structures.

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While the crises experienced until the s stemmed from the balance of payment problems, in the globalization process, the nature of the crises has changed and has become the external debt crises and financial market crises Mexico, — ERM, Mexico, Asia, Russia, Brazil, — Turkey and Argentina [ 19 ]. Thus, the volume of financial transactions in the global economy was only Equities, bonds, and foreign exchange spot transactions have nearly doubled the nominal GDP worldwide [ 20 ].

The world debt crises, which began with the declaration of the moratorium by Mexico in and spread by domino effect, caused the creditors to halt the supply of credit in a panic. Thus, developing countries, whose external debt burden has become more severe, had to implement the stabilization policies proposed by the IMF in order to get new loans or to delay debt. Unlike discretionary spending, which Congress must authorize each year through the appropriations process, entitlements are mandatory spending, which is automatic unless Congress alters the underlying legislation.

In the previous fiscal year, only 31 percent of federal spending went toward discretionary programs, with defense spending taking up roughly half of that. It has nearly doubled since , rising from about 40 percent to nearly 80 percent of GDP. Counting intragovernmental debt, or debts owed by one U. By , the deficit will have risen for eight consecutive years, the longest such streak in U. On this steep trajectory, the publicly held U. This would bring the number close to percent of GDP, a level not reached since The main drivers are mandatory spending programs, namely Social Security—the largest U.

Their costs, which currently account for 47 percent of all federal spending, are expected to surge as a percentage of GDP because of the aging U.

List of countries by public debt

Meanwhile, interest payments on the debt, which now account for 8 percent of the budget, are expected to rise relative to other outlays if interest rates rebound from historically low levels and debt continues to accumulate. The discretionary budget, which includes spending on programs ranging from defense to transportation, is expected to shrink as a proportion of the budget. President Trump signed off on several pieces of legislation with implications for the debt. Signed into law in December , it is the most comprehensive tax reform legislation in three decades.

However, the CBO projects the law will add significantly to annual budget shortfalls in the coming years. Even more worrisome, they say, is a scenario in which many of the provisions that are set to expire by , such as tax cuts for individuals, are renewed, which would pile on even more debt. Spending deals passed in and are also projected to increase the deficit.

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Moreover, recent legislation has not made any cuts to entitlements, a politically unpopular move that most budget experts say is nevertheless necessary to contain the debt. As a result, the U. High demand for the dollar has helped the United States finance its debt, as many investors put a premium on holding low-risk, dollar-denominated assets such as U. Treasury bills, notes, and bonds. These Treasurys are the primary financial instruments that the U. Steady demand from foreign creditors—largely central banks adding to their dollar reserves, rather than market investors—is one factor that has helped the United States to borrow money at relatively low interest rates.

The bulk of U. This includes domestic and foreign investors, as well as both governmental and private funds. Foreign investors, mostly governments, hold more than 40 percent of the total.

Top 20 Countries by Lowest Debt 2019

For most of the last decade, China has been the largest creditor of the United States.