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CAMBRIDGE, Massachusetts — Many people have been asking why the dollar hasn’t crashed yet. Will the United States ever face a bill for the string of massive trade deficits that it has been running for more than a decade?

Including interest payments on past deficits, the tab for 2006 alone was over $800 billion — roughly 6.5 percent of the U.S. gross national product. Even more staggeringly, U.S. borrowing now soaks up more than two-thirds of the combined excess savings of all the surplus countries in the world, including China, Japan, Germany and the OPEC states.

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