Washington: The US government's debt load topped the USD 15 trillion mark, as politicians in Congress continued to battle over how to cut spending.

Treasury figures showed the burden of federal borrowing on the shoulders of the American public reached USD 15,033,607,255,920.32  on Wednesday, up USD 55.8 billion from Tuesday.

That was roughly equal to 99 per cent of the size of the total US economy projected for 2011, a level normally seen as very unhealthy by economists.

Government debt has steadily climbed since August 2, when Congress broke a three-month deadlock and agreed to raise the country's official debt ceiling from the then-USD 14.3 trillion to USD 15.194 trillion.

Debt covered by the ceiling -- slightly less than total public debt -- has grown to USD 14.989 trillion since then, with the government spending some USD 1.40 for every dollar it takes in revenues.

The USD 15 trillion mark was hit as a joint Democrat-Republican panel in Congress, tasked to slash the government deficit that has driven borrowing so high, appeared deadlocked just over a week before their November 23 deadline.

If the deficit super committee cannot agree, Congress is required to itself automatically make sweeping cuts to the budget a year from now that could crunch the economy.

(Agencies)