It’s the total size of the debt that makes it expensive . . .

May 17th, 2011

Beat this for a sobering bar chart in today’s Wall Street Journal;

The shocker is that while the UK has a lower interest rate than Euroland and can borrow at lower rates than every other major European country other than Germany, we are only just behind most of the  PIIGS (Portugal, Italy, Ireland Greece and Spain) when measured by the total cost to GDP of interest payments on borrowing at 3.1% while Spain is some way down at 2.2%.

I still think the story that the UK was facing bankruptcy etc. was way overblown and at times, silly. As I have argued here and here.

But who wants to spend 3.1% of GDP on interest payments while simultaneously trying to enshrine in law a commitment to Foreign Aid of 0.7%?