WASHINGTON The United States should run out of tools to avoid a default between mid-February and early March, which could lead to lasting damage to the U.S. economy and its creditworthiness, the Treasury said on Monday.
In a letter to Congress, Treasury Secretary Timothy Geithner urged lawmakers to raise the $16.4 trillion legal limit on the nation's debt, or risk 'irreparable' economic harm.
He said the Treasury would later provide a more narrow timeline for when it believes it will no longer be able to pay the government's bills.
(Reporting by Anna Yukhananov. Editing by Andre Grenon)