Saturday, January 3, 2009

A Trillion Here, A Trillion There

In case you are keeping score at home (and I am, by the way) U.S. government debt, not this year's deficit, stands at 10.7 trillion U.S. Pesos. This piece in today's Post has two tidbits that the incoming Obama administration will have to keep in mind when they want to put another 2 trillion or so on top of our existing "country equity line" of credit.

First, is that the only reason it can probably pull this off is the amazing demand for Treasuries because of scary uncertainty in the markets. Whether or not continued government borrowing contributes to this uncertainty is a matter I've not seen discussed widely (I would be grateful to anyone who can point me to blogs/web pages that discuss this possibility).

Second is the point that more than 4 trillion of the debt is owed to other U.S. government institutions - most notably these guys. Speaking as a 40 something, and like most people in this non-scientific poll I don't expect to see a nickel of my Social Security.

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