The cheap-money era that followed the 2008 credit crisis has lured many companies into the debt market. Here's a list of the 10 biggest nonfinancial corporate borrowers, based on Bloomberg data and recent financial reports.

AT&T (Total debt: $177 billion)

AT&T Inc.'s mega-acquisitions of DirecTV in 2015 and Time Warner in 2018 were largely responsible for making it the world's biggest nonfinancial corporate borrower. The Dallas-based telecommunications carrier, which made debt reduction its “top priority” this year, plans to pay down about $20 billion with internally generated cash flow and proceeds from asset sales.

SoftBank ($154 billion)

Masayoshi Son's SoftBank Group Corp. almost quadrupled its debt, to more than $150 billion, over five years with investments in hot startups such as Uber Technologies Inc. and its purchase of the U.K.'s ARM Holdings. The Tokyo-based telecommunications company turned fund manager says investment gains offset the leverage and that near-term liquidity is adequate to handle bond maturities.

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