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Adjusted for inflation, is the current national debt per U.S. household higher or lower than it was during World War II?

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The national debt is currently $22.0 trillion, or $172,533 for every household in the United States. Adjusted for inflation, this is nearly twice as high as the peak debt from World War II. However, the current national debt is a lower portion of the U.S. economy than in WWII. Some economists claim that the large national debt of WWII and the high economic growth of the post-WWII era prove that the modern national debt is not a serious problem. However, they neglect to mention that the national debt plummeted after WWII, because federal spending dropped precipitously. In contrast, federal spending now consumes a significantly higher portion of the U.S. economy than in the post-WWII era, while taxes have slightly increased. Thus, the national debt has been rising instead of plunging, which is a materially different situation than after WWII.

DocumentationNational DebtDebt Trends & Consequences

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