The U.S. Treasury Department said its borrowing from October through December will be the lowest for the period in seven years as the economy gains momentum, boosting tax receipts.
The Treasury plans to issue $232 billion in net marketable debt in the final three months of this year, about $45 billion more than projected three months ago and the lowest since 2007, it said today in Washington. Next quarter, the Treasury plans to borrow $209 billion, the department said.
U.S. budget deficits have been falling since 2009, and the 2014 deficit was 2.8 percent of gross domestic product, according to the Congressional Budget Office. That is down from 9.8 percent of GDP in 2009, when President Barack Obama took office.
“The strengthening of economic conditions in recent years has occurred alongside a faster-than-expected reduction in the federal government budget deficit,” Karen Dynan, the Treasury’s chief economist, said in a statement. “The U.S. economic recovery continues to move solidly forward.”
Borrowing projections for the October-to-December period were revised up as the Treasury aimed to have more cash on hand at the end of the quarter, increasing its cash-balance estimate to $200 billion from $140 billion in August. The Treasury projects it will have $100 billion in cash on March 31.
The Treasury said it borrowed $205 billion in marketable debt in the three months ended in September, more than an August projection of $192 billion. The cash balance was $158 billion at the end of September, more than the previous estimate of $150 billion.
Shrinking budget gaps have come as the economy has gained momentum. U.S. gross domestic product grew at a 3.5 percent annualized rate from July through September, the Commerce Department said Oct. 30, exceeding the median 3 percent forecast by economists in a Bloomberg survey.
The economy has gained an average of 227,000 jobs per month this year, up from a 194,000 average last, showing progress toward sustaining faster growth. Unemployment fell to 5.9 percent at the end of September from 7.2 percent a year earlier.
The better pace of hiring could trigger a self-reinforcing cycle of stronger spending that boosts business confidence and creates more jobs, adding fuel to the expansion.
The Treasury borrowing estimates precede the department’s quarterly refunding announcement on Nov. 5, when the sizes of monthly note and bond sales are released. At the past refunding, the Treasury maintained the size of its two-year and three-year note auctions. The department also kept the amount of longer-term bond issuance unchanged from the previous quarter.
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