National Debt – What You Can Buy With A Trillion Dollars
The national debt is now over 13 trillion dollars. That number is so big, it is hard to grasp. Here’s one way. Consider what you can buy with a trillion dollars.
The notion comes to us from Kiplinger via Yahoo. The financial numbers being thrown around these days are so large that they almost make no sense. I mean really, how long will it be before someone starts talking about a gazillion dollars being a real number?!
So, what can you buy with just one measly trillion dollars? Here’s a sampling of what Kiplinger came up with:
Replace Annual Incomes for 19.2 Million American Families
Median household income in the U.S. (half the families earn more, half earn less) was $52,029 in 2008, according to the Bureau of the Census. At that level, $1 trillion would be enough to cover the incomes of a sizable percentage of total U.S. family households. There are no recent official estimates, but the 2000 U.S. Census figured there were about 71.8 million family households.
A Guaranteed $6.3 Billion Payout for a 65-Year-Old Man Every Month for the Rest of His Life
With the demise of the company pension plan -- and its wonderful promise of regular checks in retirement -- immediate-payout annuities are garnering more and more attention. These investments let you trade a lump sum for a guaranteed stream of income for the rest of your life. For example, a 65-year-old man with a sweet quarter of a million nest egg to invest could buy an annuity that will pay him $1,564 a month.
Even at today's record-low interest rates (the lower the interest rate, the more expensive it is to buy future income), $1 trillion earns its way -- and then some. Because women live longer than men, on average, $1 trillion would buy a 65-year-old woman a little less. But having $5.8 billion a year to fall back on is nothing to sneeze at.
Annual Base Pay for 59.5 Million U.S. Army Privates
Basic pay for an active-duty U.S. Army private with less than two years of experience is $16,794 a year. So $1 trillion goes a mighty long way, even by military spending standards. To put that in perspective, 59.5 million privates is more than 100 times the total number of active-duty soldiers in the Army today.
1.33 Trillion Chocolate Bars
Got a hankering for something sweet? A sweet $1 trillion will buy you that many 1.55-ounce Hershey's Milk Chocolate bars at 75 cents apiece. That's 64 million tons of chocolate, equivalent to the weight of more than 150,000 Boeing 747-400s.
5,574,136 Typical American Homes
According to the National Association of Realtors, the national median price for existing single-family homes in May was $179,400. There are about 80 million detached, single-family homes in the U.S., according to the NAR and the Census Bureau.
40,816,326 New Cars
The 2010 Volkswagen Jetta TDI wins Kiplinger's Best in Class honors for cars in the $20,000-to-$25,000 price range. At a sticker price of $24,500 each, $1 trillion would let you drive away with a fleet of Jettas equivalent to 30% of all the cars already on U.S. highways. (The total U.S. car fleet is more than 135 million, according to the U.S. Department of Transportation, excluding trucks and SUVs.)
The numbers are simply staggering. This is all the more the case when you consider our national debt is 13 times one trillion dollars and will easily be 20 trillion by the end of the decade.
So, what does all this mean to you? It means you need to start planning for higher taxes and a cut in services the rest of the decade. Contact us now at (800) 341-5433
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