OREANDA-NEWS. The US Senate supported an increase in the national debt ceiling by $2.5 trillion to $31.4 trillion, as broadcasted by C-SPAN.

According to the vote, 50 people voted in favor of raising the national debt limit and 49 against.

Later this decision should be approved in the lower house of Congress, after which it will be signed by U.S. President Joe Biden.

In August this year, the national debt ceiling, which was suspended by Congress two years ago, came into effect in the United States. The limit after a two-year freeze was $28.5 trillion. The US Treasury Department announced "additional emergency measures" due to reaching the government debt ceiling, including cuts in investments in the old-age and disability pension fund, the Postal Service retiree health insurance fund and the state securities investment fund.

On 15 October, Biden signed an executive order raising the national debt limit to avoid a possible default. The bill provided for an increase in the national debt limit by $480 billion to $28.9 trillion. As the White House clarified, this would be enough "for the federal government to continue to meet its obligations in full until early December".

Later, Treasury Secretary Janet Yellen called for a further increase in the national debt ceiling. "It is critical that Congress act to increase or suspend the debt limit in a way that provides long-term certainty that the government will meet all its obligations,"- she said. She estimated that raising the cap by $480bn only provides a "temporary reprieve", so a decision needs to be taken as soon as possible.