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How Debt-to-GDP Ratios Have Changed Since 2000

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See this visualization first on the Voronoi app.

Chart comparing debt to GDP ratios from 2000 to 2024

How Debt-to-GDP Ratios Have Changed Since 2000

This was originally posted on our Voronoi app. Download the app for free on Apple or Android and discover incredible data-driven charts from a variety of trusted sources.

Government debt levels have grown in most parts of the world since the 2008 financial crisis, and even more so after the COVID-19 pandemic.

To gain perspective on this long-term trend, we’ve visualized the debt-to-GDP ratios of advanced economies, as of 2000 and 2024 (estimated). All figures were sourced from the IMF’s World Economic Outlook.

Data and Highlights

The data we used to create this graphic is listed in the table below. “Government gross debt” consists of all liabilities that require payment(s) of interest and/or principal in the future.

Country2000 (%)2024 (%)Change (pp)
๐Ÿ‡ฏ๐Ÿ‡ต Japan135.6251.9+116.3
๐Ÿ‡ธ๐Ÿ‡ฌ Singapore82.3168.3+86.0
๐Ÿ‡บ๐Ÿ‡ธ United States55.6126.9+71.3
๐Ÿ‡ฌ๐Ÿ‡ง United Kingdom36.6105.9+69.3
๐Ÿ‡ฌ๐Ÿ‡ท Greece104.9160.2+55.3
๐Ÿ‡ซ๐Ÿ‡ท France58.9110.5+51.6
๐Ÿ‡ต๐Ÿ‡น Portugal54.2104.0+49.8
๐Ÿ‡ช๐Ÿ‡ธ Spain57.8104.7+46.9
๐Ÿ‡ธ๐Ÿ‡ฎ Slovenia25.966.5+40.6
๐Ÿ‡ซ๐Ÿ‡ฎ Finland42.476.5+34.1
๐Ÿ‡ญ๐Ÿ‡ท Croatia35.461.8+26.4
๐Ÿ‡จ๐Ÿ‡ฆ Canada80.4103.3+22.9
๐Ÿ‡จ๐Ÿ‡พ Cyprus56.070.9+14.9
๐Ÿ‡ฆ๐Ÿ‡น Austria65.774.0+8.3
๐Ÿ‡ธ๐Ÿ‡ฐ Slovak Republic50.556.5+6.0
๐Ÿ‡ฉ๐Ÿ‡ช Germany59.364.0+4.7
๐Ÿ‡ง๐Ÿ‡ช Belgium109.6106.8-2.8
๐Ÿ‡ฎ๐Ÿ‡ฑ Israel77.456.8-20.6
๐Ÿ‡ฎ๐Ÿ‡ธ Iceland75.854.6-21.2

The debt-to-GDP ratio indicates how much a country owes compared to the size of its economy, reflecting its ability to manage and repay debts. Percentage point (pp) changes shown above indicate the increase or decrease of these ratios.

Countries with the Biggest Increases

Japan (+116 pp), Singapore (+86 pp), and the U.S. (+71 pp) have grown their debt as a percentage of GDP the most since the year 2000.

All three of these countries have stable, well-developed economies, so it’s unlikely that any of them will default on their growing debts. With that said, higher government debt leads to increased interest payments, which in turn can diminish available funds for future government budgets.

This is a rising issue in the U.S., where annual interest payments on the national debt have surpassed $1 trillion for the first time ever.

Only 3 Countries Saw Declines

Among this list of advanced economies, Belgium (-2.8 pp), Iceland (-21.2 pp), and Israel (-20.6 pp) were the only countries that decreased their debt-to-GDP ratio since the year 2000.

According to Fitch Ratings, Iceland’s debt ratio has decreased due to strong GDP growth and the use of its cash deposits to pay down upcoming maturities.

See More Debt Graphics from Visual Capitalist

Curious to see which countries have the most government debt in dollars? Check out this graphic that breaks down $97 trillion in debt as of 2023.

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Personal Finance

Mapped: The Income a Family Needs to Live Comfortably in Every U.S. State

Families in expensive states require over $270,000 annually to live comfortably.

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A map showing the income that two working adults with two children need to live comfortably in each U.S. state.

The Income a Family Needs to Live Comfortably in Every U.S. State

This was originally posted on ourย Voronoi app. Download the app for free onย iOSย orย Androidย and discover incredible data-driven charts from a variety of trusted sources.

Families in the top five most expensive U.S. states require an annual income exceeding $270,000 to live comfortably.

This visualization illustrates the income necessary for two working adults with two children to maintain a comfortable lifestyle in each state.

“Comfortable” is defined as the income needed to cover a 50/30/20 budget, with 50% allocated to necessities like housing and utilities, 30% to discretionary spending, and 20% to savings or investments.

The calculations for family income needed in each state were done by SmartAsset, using the cost of necessities sourced from the MIT Living Wage Calculator, last updated on Feb. 14, 2024.

Massachusetts Tops the List

Massachusetts is the most expensive state to live comfortably in, requiring a total family income of about $301,184. Hawaii ($294,611) comes in second, followed by Connecticut ($279,885).

Housing is one main reason Massachusetts is an expensive state to live in, particularly in the Boston area. In addition, the state also has a high cost of living, including expenses such as healthcare and utilities.

RankStateIncome for 2 working adults raising 2 children
1Massachusetts$301,184
2Hawaii$294,611
3Connecticut$279,885
4New York$278,970
5California$276,723
6Colorado$264,992
7Washington$257,421
8Oregon$257,338
9New Jersey$251,181
10Rhode Island$249,267
11Vermont$248,352
12Minnesota$244,774
13New Hampshire$244,109
14Alaska$242,611
15Maryland$239,450
16Nevada$237,286
17Virginia$235,206
18Illinois$231,962
19Arizona$230,630
20Pennsylvania$230,464
21Maine$229,549
22Delaware$228,966
23Wisconsin$225,056
24Utah$218,483
25Michigan$214,490
26Nebraska$213,075
27Georgia$212,826
28Montana$211,411
28Iowa$211,411
30Idaho$211,245
31North Carolina$209,331
31Ohio$209,331
33Florida$209,082
34Indiana$206,003
35New Mexico$203,923
36Wyoming$203,424
37Missouri$202,259
38North Dakota$202,176
39Texas$201,344
40South Carolina$200,762
41Kansas$196,768
42Tennessee$195,770
43Oklahoma$194,106
44Alabama$193,606
45South Dakota$192,608
46Kentucky$190,112
47Louisiana$189,613
48West Virginia$189,363
49Arkansas$180,794
50Mississippi$177,798

Meanwhile, Mississippi is the least expensive state for a family to live comfortably, requiring $177,798 per year. Arkansas ($180,794) comes in second, followed by West Virginia ($189,363). In common, all these states share low prices of housing.

Learn More About Cost of Living From Visual Capitalist

If you enjoyed this post, be sure to check outย this graphic, which ranks the median down payment for a house by U.S. state.

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