United States - national debt per capita 2019

This graph shows the outstanding gross federal debt of the United States of America per capita from 1990 to July 2019. In 2019, the gross federal debt amounted to around 69,060 U.S. dollars per capita.

The total debt accrued by the U.S. annually can be accessed here.

Additional information on the federal debt of the United States

The level of national debt held by the United States government has risen sharply in the years following the Great Recession. Federal debt is the amount of debt the federal government owes to creditors who hold assets in the form of debt securities. As with individuals and consumers there is a common consensus among economists that holding debt is not necessarily problematic for government so long as the public debt is held at a sustainable level. Although there is no agreed upon ratio of debt to gross domestic product, the increasing debt held by the Federal Reserve has become a major part of the political discourse in the United States.

In recent years debate over the debt ceiling has been of concern to domestic politicians, the owners of federal debt and global economy as a whole. The debt ceiling is a legislated maximum amount that national debt can reach intended to impose a degree of fiscal prudence on incumbent governments. However, as national debt has grown the debt ceiling has been reached thus forcing legislative action by congress. In both 2011 and 2013 new legislation was passed by congress allowing the debt ceiling to be raised. The Budget Control Act of 2011 and the No Budget, No Pay Act of 2013 successively allowed the government to avoid defaulting on national debt and therefore avert a potential economic crisis.

United States' national debt per capita from 1990 to 2019

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Release date

March 2020


United States

Survey time period

1990 to 2019

Supplementary notes

The data is based on calculations by Statista.com based on the Census populatnio projections as of July 1st each year and gross federal debt.
The fiscal year for the U.S. Government starts October 1. The annual amount of public debt outstanding is therefore drawn on September 30 each year. Data for national debt of the United States has been retrieved from here.

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Statistics on "U.S. public debt"

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