Treasury To Make First Paydown On National Debt In 6 Years

The federal government says it will pay down $35 billion of the national debt this quarter. It's a reversal of an earlier prediction that the government would add more than $100 billion in debt during the second quarter of 2013. Economists say the payment was made possible by spending cuts and higher tax revenues.

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RENEE MONTAGNE, HOST:

NPR's business news begins with a rare payment on the debt.

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MONTAGNE: The federal government says it will pay down $35 billion of the national debt this quarter. That's the first debt payment it has made in six years. The pay down is a reversal of an earlier prediction that the government would add over $100 billion in debt in the second quarter of 2013. Economists say this was made possible by spending cuts and higher tax revenues. Politically, this also postpones another showdown between the White House and Congress over the need to raise the debt ceiling, which now won't likely be until September

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