Government funding isn’t the only important deadline that’s approaching rapidly. According to a report released by the Congressional Budget Office on Wednesday, the U.S. Treasury could run out of money in just a few weeks if the debt ceiling isn’t raised.
The new analysis moves the date the Treasury likely bumps into the $20.5 trillion debt ceiling forward several weeks to the first half of March.
Earlier estimates gave the Treasury a little more breathing room, locating the date in late March or early April. But the tax cuts signed into law in December will reduce federal revenues by $10 billion to $15 billion a month starting in February, according to the CBO.
The Treasury is currently deploying “extraordinary measures” to manage cash-flow in order to avoid hitting the ceiling, including suspending the issuance of some types of bonds and reducing investments in several retirement funds.
Earlier this week, Treasury Secretary Steven Mnuchin asked Congress to raise the debt ceiling by the end of February. Lawmakers are expected to negotiate a deal in the next few weeks, but there’s a chance the debt ceiling could get caught up in the larger struggle over government spending.
If Congress fails to raise the debt ceiling soon, the government would face the possibility of default on U.S. debt.