Global debt to hit record $277 trillion by year end

NEW YORK (Reuters) — Glob­al debt is expect­ed to soar to a record $277 tril­lion by the end of the year as gov­ern­ments and com­pa­nies con­tin­ue to spend in response to the COVID-19 pan­dem­ic, the Insti­tute of Inter­na­tion­al Finance said in a report on Wednesday.

The IIF, whose mem­bers include over 400 banks and finan­cial insti­tu­tions across the globe, said debt bal­looned already by $15 tril­lion this year to $272 tril­lion through Sep­tem­ber. Gov­ern­ments — most­ly from devel­oped mar­kets — account­ed for near­ly half of the increase.

Devel­oped mar­kets’ over­all debt jumped to 432% of GDP in the third quar­ter, from a ratio of about 380% at the end of 2019. Emerg­ing mar­ket debt-to-GDP hit near­ly 250% in the third quar­ter, with Chi­na reach­ing 335%, and for the year the ratio is expect­ed to reach about 365% of glob­al GDP.

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