Due to global economic recession, several nations are facing the issue of high debt levels in comparison with their gross domestic product (GDP). European nations such as Ireland, Greece, and Portugal are badly hit – where this issue is coupled with high unemployment rates that are about 14%. This signifies that these nations have low wealth. The blend of tremendously high debt, sinking GDP, and rising liabilities has triggered credit downgrades.
Moody’s has already rated several prominent nations with downgraded credit standings, which include many European Union member countries facing crushing government debt. Here are the top 10 countries with the peak debt-to-GDP ratios.
10. United Kingdom (80.9% debt of GDP)
With general government debt of $1.99 trillion for 2011, GDP per capita of $35,860, unemployment rate of 8.4%, and credit rating of AAA; U.K seems to have managed to keep its financial standing secured and stable. It is because of its independence due to which U.K is not swallowed by the European debt crisis.
9. Germany (81.8% debt of GDP)
Germany has GDP per capita of $37,591, unemployment rate of 5.5%, and credit rating of AAA. A good portion of the IMF and EU bailout package was funded by Germany to help Greece in 2010. Regarded as the largest economy and fiscal throttle-hold of the EU, it has maintained debt stability for the full eurozone.
8. France (85.4% debt of GDP)
The country has GDP per capita of $33,820, unemployment rate of 9.9%, and credit rating of AAA according to Moody’s. Regarded as the third-biggest economy in the European Union and one of the most economically stable nations, Standard & Poor’s has recently demoted its credit rating from AAA to AA+. This demotion has naturally given a shock to the French government that claims its economy to be as stable as that of the U.K.’s.
7. United States (85.5% debt of GDP)
With GDP per capita of $47,184, unemployment rate of 8.3%, and credit rating of AAA; the U.S.A government debt has increased over years, which was only 45.6% of GDP in 2001. According to Moody’s, the debt has doubled from $6.4 trillion in 2005 to $12.8 trillion in 2011. Therefore, Standard & Poor’s has downgraded its credit rating from AAA to AA+.
6. Belgium (97.2% debt of GDP)
Belgium has the GDP per capita of $37,448, unemployment rate of 7.2%, and credit rating of AA1. In 1993, the nation’s public debt-to-GDP ratio rose to 135% but came down subsequently to around 84% by 2007. But in the course of four years, the ratio has jumped to almost 95%. This is also the reason why its credit rating has gone down.