Canada: This one’s for you.
It’s spring cleaning time, and I presume that my Canadian friends will appreciate the changes I’ve made to the National Debt Thermometer.
First, it now has a new name: The International Debt Thermometer. Second, the data sources are now more explicit. Third, I have added a second graphic that shows selected OECD countries, with “Net Debt” on the left, and “Gross Debt” on the right. Canada’s Net Debt is lower than the USA’s, according to the OECD.
Here is the first graphic. The monthly %GDP calculation I make (on the left side) is now separated from the CIA World Factbook’s numbers (on the right side). On the left, I’ve also added the “Publicly Held Debt” portion of the USA’s total debt.
Next is the new graphic showing OECD data only. Note that Canada’s “Net Debt” is lower than the USA’s, and also that Australia’s Net Debt is negative. (FYI, Norway’s Net Debt, not shown, is -141%. Yes, it's minus one hundred forty-one percent.)
The OECD includes state and local debt in its “Gross Debt” numbers, which makes it apples-and-oranges if compared to our Bureau of Public Debt’s “Total Debt” number. That’s why I added the OECD-only graphic.
For anyone interested in researching the details, here are some links:
• BEA GDP announcement and data
• Bureau of Public Debt, latest debt numbers (Total and Publicly-held)
• OECD page linking to Gross and Net Debt tables
• CIA World Factbook list of “Public Debt” by country
• CIA World Factbook glossary entry for “Public Debt”
• Form for asking the CIA a question (...lotsa luck; I tried)