Thursday, August 21, 2014

Federal government net worth relative to GDP, and the Federal debt

Well, I was just going to go with this graph today:

Blue line = the Federal government "net worth" data (from yesterday's graph) converted to billions and divided by GDP.

Red line = Federal debt as a Percent of GDP, expressed as negative values.

But after the responses to yesterday's post, the above seems inadequate. So I tracked down the data behind the "Federal Government Net Worth" graph. I googled Table S.7.q and got to the BEA Integrated Macroeconomic Accounts for the United States page. They list several tables with an "a" suffix (annual) and a "q" suffix (quarterly). Table S.7 in both cases is "Federal government" data.

I'm only looking at annual data as the file is a lot smaller. And only the most recent values -- which is 2012, for some reason. Also, I'm deleting the first 95 line items from the file, to get to the "Changes in balance sheet account" part.

Total assets (line 96) 4626.9 billion dollars. Not far off from the 4 trillion Greg noted in comments yesterday.

Total liabilities and net worth (line 128) also 4626.9 billion. But the liabilities (line 129) are 15245.9 billion, and the net worth (line 145) is -10619 billion.

That's more than enough detail for me.

1 comment:

Greg said...


I wonder what the land held by the govt is worth?