The U.S. Treasury plans to borrow $776 billion in the last quarter of 2023, a decrease from the $1.01 trillion borrowed in the third quarter and slightly below the forecasts by financial strategists, such as those from JPMorgan Chase who predicted around $800 billion. This adjustment comes at a time when the bond market is particularly volatile, with past Treasury announcements triggering significant yield increases that reach their highest since 2007.
The need for decreased borrowing is attributed to higher-than-expected government receipts, which were somewhat balanced out by increased expenditures. Looking ahead, the Treasury anticipates borrowing $816 billion in the first quarter of 2024, surpassing Wall Street's expectations once again.
The announcement, which detailed a fiscal 2023 budget deficit of approximately $1.7 trillion—up by $320 billion from the previous year—reflects a robust economic growth and a reduction in inflation, although it remains above the Fed's target. The projections also indicate an expected deceleration of economic growth.
With the Treasury maintaining a $750 billion cash balance across both quarters, financial markets are now awaiting further details from the upcoming refunding announcement, which will clarify auction sizes, durations, and timing. This coincides with a highly anticipated Federal Reserve policy meeting where interest rates are expected to remain unchanged.