US could start defaulting on debt ‘very soon’ warns Lew

Monday, February 3, 2014
By Paul Martin

US Treasury Secretary calls on Congress to raise debt ceiling immediately to prevent the issue from harming the economic recovery

03 Feb 2014

US Treasury Secretary Jacob Lew warned Monday that the US is on course to hit its so-called debt ceiling, the limit to which it can legally borrow, by the end of the month.

He called on Congress to raise it immediately to prevent the issue from harming the economic recovery, adding that the government would start defaulting on its debt “very soon” if it failed to act.

“Time is short. Congress needs to act to extend the nation’s borrowing authority, and it needs to act now,” Mr Lew said in a speech on Monday.

“It would be a mistake to wait until the 11th hour to get this done,” he added. Mr Lew has previously called on Congress to raise the debt ceiling swiftly in a letter last month.

“In just a matter of days, the temporary suspension of the debt limit will end, and the Treasury Department will have to start using extraordinary measures so the government can continue to meet its obligations,” he said at Washington think tank the Bipartisan Policy Center.

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