Borrowing at Credit Card Rates

Let’s be clear: for a country to issue a sovereign bond with an 11.95% coupon is really just a polite way of saying it’s broke. Moderately responsible individuals in the first world can literally get credit card debt cheaper than that.

Over the last year or two, we’ve all gotten pretty much inured to news of debt issues with eye-popping, salvaguarda-standards-busting interest rates. It may be that in the rest of the known financial universe these yields are more often associated with system-shaking, emergency-summit-holding, waltzing-right-up-to-the-edge-of-default hijinks, but for us it’s the new normal.

Stop and think about what this means, though. It’s now normal that the newly certified Holder-of-the-World’s-Largest-Oil-Reserves pays more on its sovereign debt than some regular Joe with a credit card.

You really gotta pinch yourself…

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