Open for Business: Treasury Issued $106B in New Debt--On 3rd Day of 'Shutdown'

By Terence P. Jeffrey | October 6, 2013 | 8:59am EDT

Treasury Secretary Jack Lew and Barack Obama (AP Photo/Carolyn Kaster)

( - Although politicians and the press have generally referred to what has been happening in the federal government since Tuesday, Oct. 1 as a "shutdown" or "partial shutdown," that did not prevent the U.S. Treasury from being open for business on Thursday--the third day of the "shutdown" and issuing $106.291 billion in new debt, according to the Daily Treasury Statement released at 4:00 p.m. on Friday.

Despite selling that $106.291 in new Treasury securities, the net value of extant U.S. Treasury securities did not increase because during the first three days of October the Treasury also redeemed $111.330 billion in maturing Treasury securities. That means the net value of U.S. Treasury securities held by the public actually decreased by $5.039 billion.

However, the cash in the Treasury's Federal Reserve account also declined. At the start of Thursday, the Treasury had $57.533 billion cash on hand in that account. By the close of business on Thursday, the Treasury had only $24.453 billion cash on hand--a drop of $33.080 billion in cash on hand.

Even though the net debt held by the public declined by $5.039 billion in Thursday, and the cash reserved declined by $33.080 billion, according to the Daily Treasury Statement, the same statement said the public debt subject to the legal limit set by Congress remained exactly $16,699,396,000,000. The Treasury has said the debt subject to the limit has closed the day at precisely that amount on every day since May 17.

The static $16,699,396,000,000 that the Treasury says the debt subject to limit has maintained every day since May 17 is just $25 million below the legal limit.

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