A still-fragile global recovery is being put at risk by Washington's squabbling politicians, finance ministers and governors of central banks have warned as they stepped up the pressure on the US to avoid a catastrophic debt default this week. In a series of attacks encouraged by the Obama administration, policymakers gathered in the US capital for the annual meeting of the International Monetary Fund used the platform to call for an agreement before Thursday's deadline to raise America's $16.7 trillion (£10.5tn) debt ceiling. Mario Draghi, the president of the European Central Bank, said: "It is unthinkable that an agreement won't be found. If this situation were to last a long time this would be negative, very negative for the US economy and the world economy and could certainly harm the recovery." Full story >>
The cartoon from The Independent shows President Obama driving a car with the words 'DEBT CRISIS' on its number plate. The steering wheel has broken and he is heading straight for a collision with an anthropomorphic representation of the globe.
The impending car crash is a metaphor for the potentially disastrous effects of the US funding crisis on the global economy. The cartoonist plays on the literal and figurative meanings of the word 'impact' ('the act or force of one thing hitting another' and 'a powerful or major influence or effect').