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Tentative U.S. Senate to raise debt limit until February 15 - source

A general view of the U.S. Capitol is seen from the Russell Senate Office Building in Washington, February 25, 2013. REUTERS/Jonathan Ernst
A general view of the U.S. Capitol is seen from the Russell Senate Office Building in Washington, February 25, 2013. REUTERS/Jonathan Ernst

WASHINGTON (Reuters) - Democratic and Republican senators are working on a fiscal deal that would extend U.S. borrowing authority at least through mid-February and provide government funding until mid-January to end a two-week government shutdown, according to a source familiar with the negotiations.

The tentative framework, which is not finalized and could change, would also set up a new round of deficit-reduction negotiations that would try to strike a bargain by year's end.

The source, who asked not to be identified, said negotiators were still bargaining over whether the February 15 date for the debt limit extension would be a firm deadline or whether the Treasury Department would be allowed to use "extraordinary measures" to extend borrowing beyond that date, as it has done in the recent past.

(Reporting By Richard Cowan; editing by Christopher Wilson)

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