Treasury Forecasts $16.763 Trillion In Debt On March 31 Translating To 105% Debt/GDP

Tyler Durden's picture


Earlier today the US Treasury released its latest Borrowing Estimates for Q1 and Q2 of calendar 2013. In brief: in the ended quarter, the Treasury borrowed some $297 billion, $9 billion more than the $288 billion previously predicted. One reason for this miss is the build up of cash in the quarter which ended at $93 billion instead of the $60 billion initially expected. However the extra cash buffer will be used in Q1, in which Treasury now expects to burn some $63 billion instead of the $30 billion forecast before, ending the quarter with $30 billion in cash. To get there, Treasury will need to raise some $331 billion in debt in January through March, just shy of the prior estimate of $342 billion in funding need in this quarter. And since the US debt to the penny counter has been stopped since the debt ceiling breach, and is still at the December 31, 2012 debt limit of $16.432 billion, this means we now know, approximately, that US debt on March 31, 2013 will be $16,763,730,050,569.10, give or take a dime, or said otherwise, assuming a generous 1% sequential growth in Q1 GDP, a 105% debt/GDP in two months.

From the Treasury:

And what this means:

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Mon, 02/04/2013 - 18:03 | 3214498 mayhem_korner
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Finally, a forecast we can believe in.

Mon, 02/04/2013 - 18:06 | 3214506 LawsofPhysics
LawsofPhysics's picture

Sure, at least the Fed is buying it.  

Mon, 02/04/2013 - 18:18 | 3214543 walküre
walküre's picture

One can never be 100% for sure especially when the numbers are so big and unfathomable. This is why they estimate. Could be at 115% or 150% debt / GDP already but who knows anymore? Do these numbers really matter anymore?

The plebs seem to be entertained and standing outside to cheer for the gladiators in Baltimore who brought "home" the trophy. Not that it personally affects or benefits any of the thousands cheering and celebrating for the players. They don't care how diluted we have become.

Why can I not be dumb for at least a day in my life to see what it feels like to enjoy the propaganda? God why have you given me the smarts to figure out how this bullshit works instead of blessing me with ignorance?

Mon, 02/04/2013 - 18:26 | 3214578 Stackers
Stackers's picture

Lets not forget all the maturing debt that has to be rolled over this year too.

Mon, 02/04/2013 - 18:28 | 3214582 mayhem_korner
mayhem_korner's picture



Is "maturing debt" a contradiction in terms?  Just sayin'

Mon, 02/04/2013 - 18:29 | 3214590 walküre
walküre's picture


Mon, 02/04/2013 - 18:53 | 3214649 kaiserhoff
kaiserhoff's picture

It's only money, Tyler.  It's not as if anyone intends to actually pay it back, or any of the other 150 trillion or so that would be counted as debt, if we had honest books.

Haven't said it lately.  AUDIT THE FED.

Mon, 02/04/2013 - 19:19 | 3214736 Go Tribe
Go Tribe's picture

All cash and metals by the Ides.

Mon, 02/04/2013 - 18:31 | 3214598 Stack Trace
Stack Trace's picture

I can't green this enough.

Mon, 02/04/2013 - 18:32 | 3214602 LapseOfReason
LapseOfReason's picture

You can always go this route

Mon, 02/04/2013 - 18:41 | 3214620 Zap Powerz
Zap Powerz's picture


18 year old scotch and beautiful girls help to ease the pain.

Mon, 02/04/2013 - 18:54 | 3214654 kaiserhoff
kaiserhoff's picture

You sure that's not 18 year old girls and cheap bourbon?

Mon, 02/04/2013 - 18:06 | 3214507 bobnoxy
bobnoxy's picture

What would it look like if they measured it the way my bank does when I want a loan? Debt to income ratio. Why do they measure it against the total output of the economy, private enterprise included?

Mon, 02/04/2013 - 18:25 | 3214564 EscapeKey
EscapeKey's picture

Not to even start on how flawed "total output of the economy" (aka GDP) is...

Mon, 02/04/2013 - 19:10 | 3214707 bobthehorse
bobthehorse's picture

I've got your debt to GDP.

I got it hanging between my legs.


Mon, 02/04/2013 - 18:07 | 3214514 francis_sawyer
francis_sawyer's picture

& what was that figure from the other day?... $17 Trillion in retirement accounts?... What a coincidence!

Mon, 02/04/2013 - 18:34 | 3214561 ebworthen
ebworthen's picture

It will be a measure of your patriotism, don't 'cha know.

"I'm doing my part, I converted my IRA to U.S. Treasury Debt-War Bonds."

Tom Hanks?  Ron Howard?  Matt Damon?


Whoopi Goldberg?  Ariana Huffington?  Barbara Streisand?

Maybe a duo with Tom and Whoopi, broadcast ad nauseum.

"Do your part to save the nation:  our brave Men and Women overseas, our children and grandchildren, our farms, our freedoms, and our great country.  Fight the national debt with Treasury Debt-War Bonds to show you care."

I can hear it now...

Mon, 02/04/2013 - 21:02 | 3215041 Bunga Bunga
Bunga Bunga's picture

Will it be a measure of Chinamen patriotism too?

Mon, 02/04/2013 - 21:25 | 3215109 Dr. Richard Head
Dr. Richard Head's picture

Fuck! Captain America did his part promoting war bonds. He turned out to be a super hero thanks to government debt and experimentation. If it works for a comic book hero it works for me.

Mon, 02/04/2013 - 19:10 | 3214699 foodstampbarry
foodstampbarry's picture

Hey, those gov't slobs who retire at 45 earned it. Now pay up bitch.

Mon, 02/04/2013 - 19:16 | 3214728 your neighbor
your neighbor's picture

Its only valued at 17 trillion at the margin. What is the value of any company that tries to make fiat from people that earns fiat while fiat is going exponential.

Mon, 02/04/2013 - 18:08 | 3214516 Left Coast Dan
Left Coast Dan's picture

I forecast higher. If there's no cap right now you know they're going to borrow as much as they can before the cutoff.

Mon, 02/04/2013 - 18:10 | 3214518 Muppet Pimp
Muppet Pimp's picture

Barack Hussein Obama showing Hugo Chavez what the left is all about!  Top that Hugo!  Real leftists don't do budgets!

Barack is living out "Dreams from His Father"

Mon, 02/04/2013 - 18:12 | 3214526 Motorhead
Motorhead's picture

Who's your daddy?!?

Mon, 02/04/2013 - 18:49 | 3214634 Buckaroo Banzai
Buckaroo Banzai's picture

If the dream is to get the country totally intoxicated, and then crash it in a ditch, then, yes. It appears we are headed to the same place that Barack Obama Sr. wound up.

Mon, 02/04/2013 - 18:08 | 3214519 AngryGerman
AngryGerman's picture

Relax, you still have a lot of room above you. look at japan, and they are doing excellent!

Mon, 02/04/2013 - 18:08 | 3214520 css1971
css1971's picture

Well look, if the point at which people lose faith they'll ever get their money back is ~300% then the US still has a few decades to go.

Mon, 02/04/2013 - 18:13 | 3214528 Motorhead
Motorhead's picture

Gold, bitchez!


Mon, 02/04/2013 - 18:14 | 3214530 HoaX
Mon, 02/04/2013 - 18:17 | 3214539 ebworthen
ebworthen's picture

"You know the rules...and so do I!"

Mon, 02/04/2013 - 18:26 | 3214571 Tsar Pointless
Tsar Pointless's picture

"You wouldn't get this from any other guy."

Mon, 02/04/2013 - 18:15 | 3214536 ebworthen
ebworthen's picture

You've probably done this already at some point, but could you give us an overlay of Treasury debt versus S&P or DOW in the same time period?

Wonder what the correlation coefficient would be?

Mon, 02/04/2013 - 18:20 | 3214544 CaptainSpaulding
CaptainSpaulding's picture

Do they take Visa?

Mon, 02/04/2013 - 18:19 | 3214550 RebelDevil
RebelDevil's picture

I'm sort of confused: How can the treasury still sell bonds when the debt limit has been hit? Do they simply say "Fuck the limit, sell em!"?

Mon, 02/04/2013 - 18:23 | 3214556 mayhem_korner
mayhem_korner's picture



Raiding pensions is the equivalent of selling bonds.  Just ask the Timmer.

(is he gone, yet?)

Mon, 02/04/2013 - 19:49 | 3214826 francis_sawyer
francis_sawyer's picture

Yup ~ They just raid away, mark it down as an accounting entry, & wait for the next convenient time to push the ceiling higher [hint: it usually happens AFTER the elections & DURING 'March Madness']...

Mon, 02/04/2013 - 21:42 | 3215157 Dr. Richard Head
Dr. Richard Head's picture

I have been pointing out to my conservative republican contemporaries how many supposed Republicans voted to "temporarily" suspend the debt ceiling ala Nixon "temporarily" suspending gold window. These acts are nothing more to bluff the remaining few (super bowl/march madness crowd of the tens of millions) to suspend gravity a bit longer.

The collective "Ah-ha!" moment of the public will be a sight to be seen, unless of course the tyranny of fasicm and national socialism finally show its last claws of desperation/death/war in its country of origin.

Mon, 02/04/2013 - 18:23 | 3214558 Banksters
Banksters's picture

Add in the FED's 3 trillion and 2 trillion robbed from Social Security and we are looking, ummm... fucked.





Mon, 02/04/2013 - 18:24 | 3214562 Dewey Cheatum Howe
Dewey Cheatum Howe's picture

What is a few billion among friends at this point.

Mon, 02/04/2013 - 18:29 | 3214589 mayhem_korner
mayhem_korner's picture



A few billion is just a couple shavings off a platinum coin, no?

Mon, 02/04/2013 - 18:25 | 3214565 syntaxterror
syntaxterror's picture

Japan is at 230.00% debt/GDP and still hasn't imploded. The US is at a paltry 105%.



Mon, 02/04/2013 - 18:25 | 3214566 Banksters
Banksters's picture


Spain has been quietly tapping the country's richest piggy bank, the Social Security Reserve Fund, as a buyer of last resort for Spanish government bonds, raising questions about the fund's role as guarantor of future pension payouts.


Now the scarcely noticed borrowing spree, carried out amid a prolonged economic crisis, is about to end, because there is little left to take. At least 90% of the €65 billion ($85.7 billion) fund has been invested in increasingly risky Spanish debt, according to official figures, and the government has begun withdrawing cash for emergency payments.










Mon, 02/04/2013 - 23:38 | 3215405 walküre
walküre's picture

ring around the rosie ...

They're already dead. Nations buying their own debt with funds from social security accounts which have been buying the sovereign bonds of said nation to invest the capital.

Collateral will evaporate into nothingness. KABOOM!!!

And then there was silence and everyone started to look in their cubboards and tins and cans and in their shed to find anything tangible that could be bartered for food. Anything of real value that other people will want to accept in exchange for a chicken, some eggs, a piece of meat and some flour. The stores are empty. Streets littered with useless paper money and plastic payment cards everywhere. It's all garbage and has no value anymore. Wondering if it ever really represented value or was all just a bad joke.

This will be reality. Get your house in order. NOW.


Mon, 02/04/2013 - 18:28 | 3214569 John Law Lives
John Law Lives's picture

"Treasury will need to raise some $331 billion in debt in January through March, just shy of the prior estimate of $342 billion in funding need in this quarter."

I imagine The Great Chairsatan will be happy to help accomodate the Treasury by gobbling up its paper...


Mon, 02/04/2013 - 21:07 | 3215056 NIETSNEREM
NIETSNEREM's picture

I couldn't believe it when my Bloomberg terminal started flashing in big red letters this afternoon proclaiming "Treasury to borrow $11 billion less than previously estimated next quarter." I looked at it with one one of those WTF glances.

Mon, 02/04/2013 - 18:26 | 3214570 Sudden Debt
Sudden Debt's picture

nice.... 5% plus increase in how many months?
almost every president did that in a 4 year term... Obama in a fart...

Mon, 02/04/2013 - 18:27 | 3214575 CrashisOptimistic
CrashisOptimistic's picture

"or said otherwise, assuming a generous 1% sequential growth in Q1 GDP, a 105% debt/GDP in two months."


Slight phrasing issue, and it may be correct, but GDP growth rates reported each quarter are annualized.  There's really no such thing as "sequential".

Last week's -0.1% was annualized for 2012 Q4.  This left 2012's average-of-quarters GDP rise between 1.5 and 2%, annualized.

Mon, 02/04/2013 - 18:30 | 3214593 ShrNfr
ShrNfr's picture

"sequential quarters of annualized 1% growth"? See that wasn't hard.

Mon, 02/04/2013 - 18:47 | 3214632 Tyler Durden
Tyler Durden's picture

There is annualized growth of any one quarter. And there is sequential. The former can be represented as the latter, which is what this analysis has done.

Mon, 02/04/2013 - 18:54 | 3214653 CrashisOptimistic
CrashisOptimistic's picture

Won't quibble too very much.

Corporate earnings of small caps will talk about sequential increases of say, Q4 over Q3.  That's perhaps an informal definition of "sequential", but this little commentary clarifies adequately.

Though btw Q1 1% fights the payroll tax cut headwind and a goodly portion of the discretionary side of the Sequester.  The DoD side is likely pushed past March 31 so it hits in Q2. 

1%, as noted in the article, will be challenging.

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