Who Will Buy Trillions Of US Treasuries??? by Chris Hamilton

The coming onslaught of US government debt will overwhelm the market. From Chris Hamilton at economica.com:

As of the latest Treasury update showing federal debt as of Wednesday, February 15…federal debt (red line below) jumped by an additional $50 billion from the previous day to $20.76 trillion.  This is an increase of $266 billion essentially since the most recent debt ceiling passage.  Of course, this isn’t helping the debt to GDP ratio (blue line below) at 105%.

But here’s the problem.  In order for the American economy to register growth, as measured by GDP (the annual change in total value of all goods produced and services provided in the US), that growth is now based solely upon the growth in federal debt.  Without the federal deficit spending, the economy would be shrinking.

The chart below shows the annual change in GDP minus the annual federal deficit incurred.  Since 2008, the annual deficit spending has been far greater than the economic activity that deficit spending has produced.  The net difference is shown below from 1950 through 2017…plus estimated through 2025 based on 2.5% average annual GDP growth and $1.2 trillion annual deficits.  It is not a pretty picture and it isn’t getting better.

Even if we assume an average of 3.5% GDP growth (that the US will not have a recession(s) over a 15 year period) and “only” $1 trillion annual deficits from 2018 through 2025, the US still continues to move backward indefinitely.

So, for America to appear as if it is moving forward, it has to go backward into greater debt?!?  If you weren’t troubled so far, here is where the stuff starts to hit the fan.

With the change to the Unified budget, effective as of 1969, the Social Security surplus was “unified” into the federal budget.  The government gave themselves a ready buyer for US debt while simultaneously allowing the SS surplus to be spent in “the present”.  Congressionally mandated to buy US debt, from 1970 to 2008, the Intra-Governmental Holdings (over half from the Social Security surplus) purchased over 45% of all federal debt issued.  This meant “only” 55% of US debt was auctioned into the market, or “marketable debt”.

To continue reading: Who Will Buy Trillions Of US Treasuries???

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