Washington: Talks at the White House with Republicans failed to reach an agreement to end the budget crisis on Thursday evening despite earlier hopes that a deal might be in sight.
Discussions between Barack Obama and House speaker John Boehner broke up after 90 minutes with little apparent progress, although there was a marked change in tone on both sides that suggests a deal could still be close.
"The president had a good meeting with members of the House Republican Leadership this evening; the meeting lasted approximately an hour and a half," the White House said in a readout after the meeting.
"After a discussion about potential paths forward, no specific determination was made. The President looks forward to making continued progress with members on both sides of the aisle," said the readout.
"The president's goal remains to ensure we pay the bills we've incurred, reopen the government and get back to the business of growing the economy, creating jobs and strengthening the middle class," it said.
As the partial government shutdown is in its 10 day, Washington faces another fiscal deadline. Treasury Secretary Jacob Lew has told Congress that the federal government will reach its debt ceiling of $16.7 trillion by Oct 17, and failure to raise it would lead to a catastrophic default.
Earlier Thursday, US House Speaker John Boehner said that Republicans planned to offer a temporary short-term debt ceiling increase to negotiate with Democrats.
Obama is "happy" with the latest offer from House Republicans and this is an encouraging sign, White House spokesman Jay Carney told reporters during the daily briefing Thursday.