Measuring the United States national debt requires us to first assess how much our nation owes to its creditors, which surpassed $26 trillion on June 10, 2020. It’s a frequent worry for many financial analysts who monitor the impact high debt levels have on vital market sectors such as employment, currency strength and economic growth.

Typically, the ratio between a country’s gross domestic product (GDP) and their level of debt is a subject of more concern, compared to actual dollar amounts owed. Currently, the U.S. is experiencing an unprecedented spike in the national debt. This trend is currently on track to reach a staggering 98.2% of GDP by the end of 2020, partly due to the COVID-19 pandemic. This percentage is equivalent to approximately $20 trillion of publicly held federal debt.