More on Our Overleveraged World

Niall Ferguson in the Huffington Post today

The harsh reality that is being repressed is this: the Western world is
suffering a crisis of excessive indebtedness. Many governments are too
highly leveraged, as are many corporations. More importantly,
households are groaning under unprecedented debt burdens. Average
household sector debt has reached 141 per cent of disposable income in
the United States and 177 per cent in the United Kingdom. Worst of all
are the banks. Some of the best-known names in American and European
finance have balance sheets forty, sixty or even a hundred times the
size of their capital. Average U.S. investment bank leverage was above
25 to 1 at the end of 2008. Eurozone bank leverage was more than 30 to
1. British bank balance sheets are equal to a staggering 440 per cent
of gross domestic product. 

I discussed whether families facing so much debt should spend or save in this post from last night.