Zombie Companies Soar in US, Globally

They are called zombies, companies so laden with debt that they are just stumbling by on the brink of survival, barely able to pay even the interest on their loans and often just a bad business hit away from dying off for good.

An Associated Press analysis found their numbers have soared to nearly 7,000 publicly traded companies around the world — 2,000 in the United States alone — whiplashed by years of piling up cheap debt followed by stubborn inflation that has pushed borrowing costs to decade highs.

And now many of these mostly small and mid-sized walking wounded could soon be facing their day of reckoning, with due dates looming on hundreds of billions of dollars of loans they may not be able to pay back.

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