The US economy is still a world-beater, at least when it comes to running up external deficits. Last year, the US imported $856 billion more than it exported. The current account now stands at 6.5 percent of GDP and it is 8 percent higher than it was in 2005. The US current account is definitely on a roll; it is the fifth straight year that the deficit increased.

So how can the US spend more than it earns? Borrowing from abroad; last year the US borrowed an average of $2 billion per day.