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Nation's Debt Hits Record High $16 Trillion
As the Democrats prepare for their convention in Charlotte, NC, they are greeting by the news just released that the total U.S. government debt eclipsed $16 trillion for the first time Friday, as total federal borrowing continues marching toward the $16.394 trillion borrowing limit.
Sen. Bob Corker (R-Tenn.) said, “Today, the United States passed a new unfortunate threshold which should be a call to action for Washington to finally address the potentially debilitating challenges posed by our unsustainable deficits and debt, which is now over 100 percent of our nation’s gross domestic product.”
Republicans have made the debt the centerpiece of their campaign to unseat President Obama, arguing that under Obama the debt has risen more than under any previous president. They put up two giant debt clocks last week at their convention in Tampa, Fla., to tally the red ink.
Since the Republicans finished their national convention last week and the Democrats start tonight, we dug through the amount of debt added by each of the last three presidents as a result of their policies.
When President Bill Clinton, a Democrat, took office in 1993, national debt stood at $4.1 trillion. He added about $1.5 trillion.
When Republican George W. Bush took over the White House, the debt had grown to $5 trillion. His programs added almost $4.9 trillion.
When Democratic President Barack Obama took over the White House in 2009, debt stood at $10.6 trillion. Today that number broke $16 trillion... a growth of more than $5 trillion in three-and-a-half years.
The government is currently running an average monthly deficit of $100 billion and is likely to hit the debt ceiling sometime in late December. The Treasury Department then can take emergency steps for several months to prevent the government from missing payments. Once the government hits the debt ceiling, it can no longer borrow money in excess of the statutory limit.
Nation's Debt Hits Record High $16 Trillion
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Last Update on December 18, 2014 08:45 GMT
ECONOMY-THE DAY AHEAD
WASHINGTON (AP) -- Labor Department releases weekly jobless claims, 8:30 a.m. Eastern Time.
Mortgage company Freddie Mac releases weekly mortgage rates, 10 a.m.
Conference Board releases leading indicators for November, 10 a.m.
SONY HACK-NORTH KOREA
NEW YORK (AP) -- A U.S. official says North Korea perpetrated an unprecedented act of cyberwarfare against Sony Pictures that exposed tens of thousands of sensitive documents and escalated to threats of terrorist attacks that ultimately drove the studio to cancel all release plans for "The Interview," the film at the heart of the attack.
Federal investigators have now connected the Sony Pictures hack to the isolated communist nation, according to an official who spoke on condition of anonymity because the official was not authorized to openly discuss an ongoing criminal case.
Earlier in the day, the besieged company said it was canceling the Christmas Day release of "The Interview." It cited the threats of violence against movie theaters and decisions by the largest multiplex chains in North America, one after another, to pull the film from its screens.
The attack is unprecedented and possibly the costliest for a U.S. company ever, says Avivah Litan, a cybersecurity analyst at research firm Gartner.
LOS ANGELES (AP) -- Taxi alternative Uber is responding to public concerns that its drivers are not adequately screened for past criminal convictions by promising to focus on rider safety.
Uber's head of global safety wrote in a blog post Wednesday that in 2015 the company will "build new safety programs and intensify others."
The initiatives will include new ways to screen drivers and the creation of teams that can rapidly respond to safety-related reports.
The blog referenced a case in India in which a driver was accused of raping a passenger. It didn't mention a lawsuit filed by California prosecutors which says the company's safety checks of drivers fall short.
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