If you have a credit card, you might be aware of what a big bill feels like. After all that holiday shopping, the pain will eventually come through in the form of a big fat bill. This is the nature of borrowing—consume or invest now, but sacrifice some prosperity in the future. For sovereign borrowers, including the G7 and BRIC (Brazil, Russia, India, & China) nations, that big fat bill is coming due.
According to data compiled by Bloomberg, the G7 and BRIC nations have $7.6 trillion in debt maturing, or coming due, in 2012—for many, not a pleasant thought to begin the year on. When you include interest payments, the bill will total over $8 trillion.
Of course, central banks are fighting back by trying to restrain interest rates by printing (or its electronic equivalent) more currency. The Federal Reserve has promised to keep interest rates near zero through 2013—practically flooding the financial system with currency and wreaking havoc in the natural order of markets.
Will 2012 be the year that Japan, the U.S., or any of the Eurozone members finally breaks and we have a full blown sovereign debt crisis on our hands? Check out the data below and tell us what you think.