«Until very recently the gargantuan US trade deficit has not been a major worry to the financial markets because non-American investors have been willing to finance the trade deficit by lending money or investing heavily in US stocks and bonds.
This is a kind of Marshall Plan in reverse as the rest of the world lends money to the US to finance its import binge. The difference is that the money can be pulled out at short notice. Although last week's figures showing that inward investment into US stocks and bonds collapsed from $50bn in August to only $4bn in September may have been erratic, there is no doubt that the underlying trend is downwards. There are now worrying signs that the rest of the world is no longer willing to finance the US spending binge.»