This Financial-Stability Metric Has the Fed’s Attention: Chart

Minutes of the Federal Open Market Committee’s September meeting, published Wednesday, showed that “a few participants expressed concern that the protracted period of very low interest rates might be encouraging excessive borrowing and increased leverage in the nonfinancial corporate sector.” The ratio of nonfinancial business debt to gross domestic product rose in the second quarter back to levels only seen during the 2008-09 recession. Fed staff have identified the metric as one of the best indicators of financial-stability risk.

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