What Does the EU Debt Crisis Mean for the United States?

From the U.S. Chamber’s Free Enterprise Publication:

If the maxim is true that when one economic powerhouse sneezes, another catches a cold, then the United States may be feeling a bit under the weather now.

Greece, Spain, and Italy may be thousands of miles away, but in today’s increasingly globalized world, the sovereign debt crisis in those countries could be preventing a more robust economic recovery in the United States.

“The U.S. doesn’t have the choice to insulate itself from what’s happening in the European economy,” says U.S. Chamber Senior Vice President for International Affairs Myron Brilliant. “Our two economies are so intertwined and the relationship is so broad and deep that we can’t isolate ourselves from Europe’s economic problems.”

Europe is the United States’ largest commercial partner, with a relationship valued at more than $5 trillion. Together the two economies constitute nearly half of world GDP and 40% of world trade. U.S. companies employ millions of Europeans, and European companies here do the same.

That level of integration—and the 17-nation eurozone’s struggle to overhaul its institutions and streamline its decision making to restore investors’ confidence—has many U.S. businesses feeling uneasy.

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