Tuesday, November 24, 2009

Scary Economics Stat of the Day

While Paul Krugman may have suddenly developed a desire for gigantic deficits, they are terrifying me. George Melloan points out the true size of the money we are borrowing in the WSJ.

A number more relevant to what the government is actually demanding from the capital markets is the Treasury's financing requirement. At a recent Chartered Financial Analyst Institute conference, Treasury official Karthik Ramanathan proudly described the prodigious fund-raising task he and his colleagues pulled off in the fiscal year, what one might call a borrowing feat unparalleled in human history: "In the course of 291 auctions in 251 business days, Treasury issued nearly $7 trillion in gross Treasury marketable securities to raise approximately $1.7 trillion to finance the government."

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