Assuming one can give Standard & Poors any credibility - remember, the rating agencies were all bullish, probably bordering on fraud, in rating a host of companies and investments on Wall St. pre the GFC - the US economy is confronted with some real issues. It has been downgraded to "negative" from "stable".
"Ratings agency Standard & Poor’s has delivered a stunning vote of no confidence in US political leaders to come up with a solution for swollen budget deficits with its decision to cut its outlook on US government debt to “negative” from “stable” for the first time in history.
S&P has thrown into sharp relief the political polarisation which is crippling Washington by questioning whether the “gulf of differences” between Republicans and Democrats over how to reduce the country’s yawning budget deficit can be resolved. There was a risk, it said, that US policy makers might fail to reach agreement on how to address budgetary challenges by 2013, which would leave US government finances in worse shape than other triple-A rated countries."