Friday, November 27, 2009

Soon half of our U.S. National Debt will be interest!

Here's a new way to think about the U.S. government's epic borrowing: More than half* of the $9 trillion in debt that Uncle Sam is expected to build up over the next decade will be interest. (*$4.8 trillion)

Why that's a problem:In 2015 alone, the estimated interest due - $533 billion - is equal to a third of the federal income taxes expected to be paid that year, said Charles Konigsberg, chief budget counsel of the Concord Coalition, a deficit watchdog group.

And then it's Vicious Circle 101 - well known to anyone who has gotten too into hock with Visa and MasterCard. The more debt the country racks up, the more likely it becomes that creditors could demand a higher interest rate for making new loans to the government. Higher rates in turn make it harder to pay off the underlying debt because more and more money is going to pay off interest - money, by the way, which is also borrowed.


Friday, November 20, 2009

U.S. National Debt projected to exceed GDP by 2019

The U.S. National Debt presently amounts to just under $40,000 for every man, woman and child in the States.

It has increased about $1.6 trillion on Mr. Obama’s watch, after climbing $4.9 trillion during the presidency of George W. Bush.

By 2019, the National Debt is projected to reach $24.5 trillion — exceeding the Gross Domestic Product projected for 2019!

How much is a Trillion Dollar?

Monday, November 09, 2009

Broader Measure of U.S. Unemployment at 17.5%

The New York Times indicates that unemployment is at its highest level since the Great Depression.

In all, more than one out of every six workers — 17.5 percent — were unemployed or underemployed in October. This includes the officially unemployed, who have looked for work in the last four weeks, and also discouraged workers who have looked in the past year, as well as millions of part-time workers who want to be working full time.

The broader rate is highest today, sometimes 20 percent, in states that had big housing bubbles, like California and Arizona, or that have large manufacturing sectors, like Michigan, Ohio, Oregon, Rhode Island and South Carolina.

It is a strange combination: workers who still have a job are doing better than in other deep recessions, while the the unemployment and underemployment figures have risen to their highest level since the Depression.

Sunday, November 01, 2009

More bank failures

Regulators on Friday closed 9 banks in California, Illinois, Texas and Arizona, boosting the number of failed U.S. banks this year to 115.

Nine is the most in one day that the FDIC has shut since the financial crisis began taking down banks last year. The 115 total failures are the most in a year since 1992 at the height of the savings-and-loan crisis.

The FDIC expects Friday's closings will cost $2.5 billion. To replenish their fund, the FDIC wants the roughly 8,100 insured banks and savings institutions to pay premiums in advance that would have been due over the next three years.

Hundreds more bank failures are expected to raise the cost to around $100 billion through 2013. Last July, FDIC Chairman Sheila Bair predicted that the bank failure rate will increase tenfold.