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Written by Andrew Puhanic
Published on Sunday, July 15th, 2012
The current level of American national debt is $15.8 Trillion and rising. This equates to an average of $51,000 of debt per American citizen. To put this level of debt into perspective, the average American income is $49,777.
Internationally, government debt has become an increasing burden for millions and millions of people. Rather than managing their economies in a fiscally responsible manner, most governments have chosen the path that leads to large amounts of debt, high government spending and high levels of inflation.
The magnitude of the American national debt is mind-boggling. However, before we examine it, let’s compare it to other countries:
The current debt to GDP ratio for the United States of America in 2012 is 104% and rising. Considering that the American economy is the largest and most influential economy within the Western world, the debt to GDP ratio is alarming.
Economies that have a greater debt to GDP ratio such as in Italy and Greece are much smaller and don’t have the same capacity to influence global markets as does the American economy.
With the current level of government debt is around 15.8 trillion, the possibilities of what that amount of money could buy is endless.
To put such a large number into prospective, and to gain a greater comprehension of what the level of American national debt means, let’s examine what could be bought with that amount of money.
A: 74,343,434 (Based on medium house prices of Northeast, Midwest, South and West America)
A: 139,350,392 units (Based on Mercedes-Benz SL at $105,633 USD)
A: 5,661,538 Units
A: 9,266,195,383 ounces of Gold. (At the time of publishing this article, the price of an ounce of Gold was $1,588.57 USD)
A: 3.5 trillion Big Macs (Based on the price of a Big Mac used in the Big Mac Index. Click here to learn about the Big Mac Index).
A: If we base our response on GDP (click here for a definition of GDP), then based on the current levels of GDP for all countries of the world, the current level of American national debt could buy:
A: Based on the cost to feed the average American family (2 adults and 2 children aged between 9 – 11), the American national debt could feed 62,452,269,834 families per week. Now, if this comparison was made against the average cost to feed a family from a third world country, then this figure would be much larger.
A: 1,362,962. A rare pink diamond was recently auctioned in Hong Kong for $10.8 million USD
A: According to Google, the net worth of Bill Gates is 61 billion. Therefore, we could clone 241.3 versions of Bill Gates. I don’t know what we would do with the .3, maybe we can share it between all of the readers of the Globalist Report?
A: 37,753. The current unit price of the Airbus A380 is 389 million USD.
As you can see from the above, the level of debt that the American government has accumulated is mind boggling. Since the last deal was agreed to resolve the level of public debt in America back in August 2011, the level of debt has been rising exponentially.
It is a fact that this debt will never be repaid. Unfortunately, the only resolution to this problem for the American government is to default on its debt. How the world will react to such a decision, especially China, is the big unknown?