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In international politics, the Group of 7, or G-7, is made up of the world’s seven most industrialized economies, which include the United States, Japan, Germany, Canada, France, Italy, and the United Kingdom. Rebecca Strauss of the Council of Foreign Relations recently compared how the national debt of the United States changed with respect to the other six members of this exclusive club since 2000:
On matters of fiscal health, the US has not traditionally looked to Europe for guidance. For much of the past three decades, governments in Italy, France, and Germany were much deeper in the hole than the US.
How things have changed. The US racked up debt faster than any other G7 country during the Great Recession, so that its debt burden is now as bad as the average European country. If current projections hold, by 2040 the US will have the worst debt burden of any G7 country save for Japan, reaching levels not seen since World War II.
Almost all of the U.S. achievement in catching up to and nearly surpassing the debt carried by the other six nations of the G-7 has been racked in the second half of the period from 2000 through 2014.