Global debt fast approaching record $ 300 trillion: IIF

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Global debt fast approaching record $ 300 trillion: IIF

Por Dhara Ranasinghe

LONDON, Sep 14 (Reuters) – World debt rose to a new record of nearly $ 300 trillion in the second quarter, but the debt-to-GDP ratio declined for the first time since the onset of the pandemic as growth recovered. economic, the Institute of International Finance (IIF) said Tuesday.

Total debt levels, which include government, domestic and corporate and banking, increased by $ 4.8 trillion to $ 296 trillion at the end of June, after a slight decrease in the first quarter, to stand at 36 trillion. dollars above pre-pandemic levels.

“If lending continues at this rate, we expect global debt to exceed $ 300 trillion,” said Emre Tiftik, IIF’s director of sustainability research.

The rise in debt levels was the steepest among emerging markets, with total debt rising by $ 3.5 trillion in the second quarter from the previous three months to nearly $ 92 trillion.

In a positive sign for the debt outlook, the IIF reported a decline in the global debt-to-GDP ratio for the first time since the start of the coronavirus crisis.

Debt as a percentage of Gross Domestic Product fell to around 353% in the second quarter, from a record 362% in the first three months of this year.

The IIF said that of the 61 countries it observed, 51 registered a decline in debt / GDP levels, mostly due to a strong rebound in economic activity. But he added that in many cases the recovery had not been strong enough to bring debt ratios back to pre-pandemic levels.

According to the IIF, the total debt-to-GDP ratio excluding the financial sector is below pre-pandemic levels in only five countries: Mexico, Argentina, Denmark, Ireland and Lebanon.

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