Skip to:
  1. Main navigation
  2. Main content
  3. Footer
Economic Commentary

The Debt Burden: What You Don't See

A day doesn’t pass without some public discussion of the federal deficit. Advocates of immediate deficit cutting use terms like “explosive” and “unstable” to describe the debt burden, suggesting imminent catastrophe. Others describe this as hysteria, pointing to the current performance of the economy as evidence that nothing serious is wrong. Neither view is quite right.

The views authors express in Economic Commentary are theirs and not necessarily those of the Federal Reserve Bank of Cleveland or the Board of Governors of the Federal Reserve System. The series editor is Tasia Hane. This paper and its data are subject to revision; please visit for updates.

Suggested Citation

Carlson, John B. 1985. “The Debt Burden: What You Don't See.” Federal Reserve Bank of Cleveland, Economic Commentary 5/1/1985.

This work by Federal Reserve Bank of Cleveland is licensed under Creative Commons Attribution-NonCommercial 4.0 International