White House openly threatens US default as debt fight escalates

US Treasury Secretary Jacob Lew has issued a categorical warning that the United States will default on its $16.7 trillion debt and throw the world into turmoil unless Congress agrees to raise the legal debt ceiling by October 17.

Mr Lew said the treasury had already exhausted its normal funds in May and has been “creating room” by resorting to one-off tricks, but these, too, have run dry. The government will have just $30bn by October 17, half what is needed to cover immediate needs over subsequent days. Continue reading