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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mayhem_korner's picture



Finally, a forecast we can believe in.

LawsofPhysics's picture

Sure, at least the Fed is buying it.  

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?

Stackers's picture

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

mayhem_korner's picture



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

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.

Go Tribe's picture

All cash and metals by the Ides.

Stack Trace's picture

I can't green this enough.

Zap Powerz's picture


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

kaiserhoff's picture

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

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?

EscapeKey's picture

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

bobthehorse's picture

I've got your debt to GDP.

I got it hanging between my legs.


francis_sawyer's picture

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

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...

Bunga Bunga's picture

Will it be a measure of Chinamen patriotism too?

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.

foodstampbarry's picture

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

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.

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.

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"

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.

AngryGerman's picture

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

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.

Motorhead's picture

Gold, bitchez!


ebworthen's picture

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

Tsar Pointless's picture

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

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?

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!"?

mayhem_korner's picture



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

(is he gone, yet?)

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']...

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.

Banksters's picture

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





Dewey Cheatum Howe's picture

What is a few billion among friends at this point.

mayhem_korner's picture



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

syntaxterror's picture

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



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.










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.


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...


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.

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...

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.

ShrNfr's picture

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

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.

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.