13 Feb 2014

US govt debt limit raised

8:07 am on 13 February 2014

The US House of Representatives has passed an increase in the federal government's debt limit.

The House voted 221-201 to waive the $US17.2 trillion debt limit for just over a year.

Officials had said the US could breach the debt limit by the end of February.

The bill, when signed into law by President Barack Obama, will enable the federal government to borrow money to fund its budget obligations and debt service.

The BBC reports the US government will run a budget deficit of about $US514 billion in the 2014 fiscal year.

Treasury Secretary Jack Lew earlier estimated the United States could use accounting measures to avoid default only until 27 February.