The eyes of the world are currently on t he USA as fears loom that if its debt ceiling is not raised, it may default on its debt. About to hit its $16.7tr (gulp!) borrowing limit, a default by the USA could potentially have disruptive, if not catastrophic effects on the rest of the world, especially in developing countries.
Measuring the f inancial health of a country is not unlike reviewing the performance of a company, and some indicators are more telling than others. But, for the ordinary man and woman in the street, many of the indicators are just plain f inancial mumbo-jumbo. Most will, more often than not, keep an eye on the exchange rate as this, for them, is a measure of how weak or strong their country is. So, too, will they pay close attention to the gold, oil and platinum prices because these are what are most often highlighted as economic indicators of the state of health of a nation.
So, we thought we would have a stab at unravelling the mysteries of f inancial jargon, as well as highlight and explain several f inancial indicators to help keep you in the picture. also be used as a measure of living standards.