Friday, February 13, 2009

No worries ... yet

February 13, 2009
Wall Street Journal

The creditworthiness of the U.S. is deteriorating more rapidly than most of its triple-A rated brethren.

The effects of the U.S.'s efforts to solve the financial and economic crisis are taking a toll on the country's ability to uphold a triple-A rating, according to a report published by Moody's Investors Service, though the agency shied away from warning of any ratings downgrade.

"By the end of a two year period, the U.S. debt ratios will be higher and moving the country's metrics to the lower end of the pack," said Steven Hess, sovereign credit analyst at Moody's. Mr. Hess said that while the analysis on the U.S. is the current view, "this triple rating isn't assured forever."

The U.S. government's debt at the end of 2008 totaled $5.8 trillion, or about 41% of the nation's total economic activity, or gross domestic product. By the end of 2010, Moody's expects the nation's debt load to increase to $9 trillion, bringing the ratio of the nation's debt to its GDP to 62%.

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