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Asia's rapid debt buildup tops developing markets, IIF says

Tuesday, November 10, 2015 - 09:29

[NEW YORK] Debt in developing markets is estimated to have reached US$58.6 trillion at the start of 2015, with credit in China, Hong Kong, India, Indonesia, Malaysia, Singapore, South Korea and Thailand exceeding that of Latin America, emerging Europe and the Middle East, according to the Institute of International Finance.

Emerging-market debt has grown $28 trillion since 2009, according to the IIF, which on Monday introduced a database tracking 18 developing markets. Global debt has soared US$50 trillion during the period to surpass a total of US$240 trillion, or 320 per cent of gross domestic product, in early 2015.

While credit has increased for almost all countries included in the new monitor over the past decade, debt-to-GDP ratios in developing Asia for non-financial corporate, household and financial corporate sectors have risen the most. Debt in Asia topped all categories except in the public sector, which has "limited" exposure across emerging nations compared with developed markets, the report said.

Non-financial corporate sector debt in emerging markets has risen US$13 trillion since 2009, increasing more than five-fold over the past decade to surpass US$23.7 trillion in the first quarter of 2015. The advance has been most concentrated in emerging Asia, where it rose to 125 per cent of GDP.

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