debtInterest payments on the federal debt will more than triple over the next decade, according to the Congressional Budget Office projected in a report released Wednesday.  Federal baseline studies project the total federal debt, estimated at approximately $17.7 trillion, will climb to $20.6 trillion in 2024, with interest payments on the federal debt climbing from $231 billion in 2014 to $799 billion in 2024. The tripling of interest payments on the federal debt and the growth of the accumulated debt closer to 100 percent of GDP over the next 10 years are factors economists typically anticipate will put a drag on economic growth rates. The CBO projected the average interest rate paid on the debt will double over the next 10 years, from 1.8 percent in 2014 to 3.9 percent in 2024, largely owing to expectations the economy will improve over that period of time. The 10-year Treasury rate began rising from very low levels in 2012 and is currently close to 2.4 percent, still low by historical standards, the report noted. More