I'm getting a lot of minor bits and pieces about crisis in 2013 mostly dealing with the EU but more generally the world. The mechanisms are fairly simple to understand but finding the data for the world is more difficult so here are the driving forces: Age related spending. US data on the subject is fairly solid and easy to find but is there a central source on variations in birth rates worldwide? Areas of the world with an inverted age pyramid such as most of the Far East and EU consume relatively little and lose very little productivity through the training of new workers. Entitlements. Even poor countries have some sort of entitlement structure: old folks homes, subsidized food, free vaccines and so on. The generosity and effectiveness of these entitlements vary a lot but are a much bigger problem in the big export countries such as the Far East and EU than they are in less generous countries such as the US. GDP growth rates. At between $15K and $16K GDP growth rates slow way down. A lot of countries are approaching this barrier for example BRICS (Brazil, Russia, India, China and South Africa) should all hit this point within the decade and will all slow down. I understand the above but I don't understand the reasoning as to why 2013 is considered is a break point of such major importance. Anyone know of easy to use data banks with which to check on this?