This is Mary Walden with economist MW welcoming you to the economic perspective. Today’s program asks why the national debt is being ignored. Mike, the national debt now totals over $22 trillion. Yet there doesn’t seem to be a widespread panic, or even a strong concern, about this debt and its impacts. Why is that?
Mike: Summary Answer
- A big factor is low interest rates
- Allow interest payments on the debt to be low
- Indeed, interest payments as a percent of the economy are lower now than 30 years ago
- A second important factor is an increase in world savings, particularly in developing countries
- US Treasury securities – which fund the debt – are highly desired due to their safety
- So US has no trouble funding the debt
- Big question – will these conditions change
- I’m MW
And I’m Mary Walden for the Economic Perspective, an NC State Extension program from the Department of Agricultural and Resource Economics.