Aug 23

Interesting Market Stat from Paul Krugman

The link to his blog is here…anyway…the stat is…

One thing you sometimes hear is that the game will be up when the ratings agencies downgrade U.S. debt. I wonder how many of the people saying this know that Moody’s and S&P downgraded Japanese debt in 2002, with Moody’s actually putting it below Botswana and Estonia.

And 8 years later, Japan can still borrow at less than 1 percent.

To put this comment into further context, Krugman is responding to all those who believe US debt is so high that the government may not cope. Whilst newspaper talk suggests Japanese debt is outrageous a less than 1% yield does not suggest any market concern whatsoever. Clearly the market is not concerned by US Government levels of debt either as current 10 year bond yields are around 2.60%…and that is an interest rate I would love to be paying on my loans!

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  1. Afundie

    Krugman should acknowledge that the Japanese whilst heavily endebted do not rely on foreign buyers of JGBs. The debt issuance is primarily placed domestically. The US very much relies on foreign investors to buy Treasuries (one of them being Japan with its large current account surplus). Thus the US may not be able to continue to issue debt at the current rate without feeling an impact on yields.

    1. mjfurey

      …and yet the US bond yields continue to drop

      1. Afundie

        Yes worrying isn’t it!

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