Mapping U.S. Foreign Debt: How Much We Owe and to Whom


1 min read

Inspired by the visualization Our Mountain of Debt by the Washington Post, we mapped how much the United States owes to foreign countries and to whom.

Our goal with this visualization was to show which countries are lending us money and to let people interact with data on a country by country basis to see how this lending has changed over time. For example, mousing over the large dot on China shows that Chinese lending to the United States has gone from $59 billion ten years ago to more than $1.15 trillion today, or one quarter of the total foreign owned debt of $4.45 trillion.

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We made this map using TileMill, our open source map design studio, and it’s powered by TileStream, our map hosting service. If you’d like to feature this on your website, feel free — here’s the embed code.

What we're doing.