The US government currently owes about $14.2 Trillion. Who did we borrow that money from, and how did those financiers get that money?
Has that money always been on earth? If not, then where did it come from? Did somebody issue it into existence? If so, then by what authority did they do so, and for what reason do nations lack that authority?
This is an excellent question. Where does the money that the Government borrows come form? And the answer is: It comes from the Treasury and the Fed! And it cannot come from any other source. This is what so few people realize, perhaps because economists are too reluctant to explain.
When the Government ‘borrows’, it sells Treasury securities and receives reserves from banks. Bank reserves are deposits at the Fed owned by banks. Deposits at the Fed can only come into existence through two channels:
1. Government spending (e.g., when the Treasury buys output from business or pays federal employees); and
2. Fed lending (e.g., when the Fed makes loans to banks).
This means that the money that government borrows (bank reserves) ultimately comes from the Treasury or from the Fed.
This simple statement has significant consequences:
-The Government does not borrow money created by others,
-The Government does not borrow anything it cannot create itself,
-The Government has no functional need to borrow,
-The Government issues securities because if it did not, the banks would have an excessive amount of reserves and the interest rate would go to zero,
-When the Government borrows, it functionally makes monetary policy (in the same way as the Fed doing open market operations),
-Governments self inflict deficit and debt rules onto themselves that are causing the world economy to collapse
-Rules for governments that aim to promote jobs and prosperity should be:
1. Do not overtax the economy for any desired size of the government sector;
2. Let deficits grow until we reach full employment;
3. Do ‘quality spending’ to create jobs and control prices.