Pay $1.2 billion to the federal government in/for interest

LQZ

Senior Member
Mandarin
Joblessness is taking a toll on states, too. This month, 27 states will have to pay $1.2 billion to the federal government in interest on the $37.5 billion that they borrowed in recent years to keep paying unemployment benefits. The New York Times (subscription)

Dear all,

Could "pay X money in interest" be "for interest"? The formula I know is "pay for". Could you please explain to me? Thanks.


LQZ
 
  • WileyZ

    Member
    English - US
    "In interest" is correct. "Pay for" means you give money for something you are buying--goods or services. You would not say "pay for" interest--at least not when you're talking about interest on a loan. Think of it this way: the money you are paying in interest does not buy you anything; you are not buying the interest.
     

    LQZ

    Senior Member
    Mandarin
    "In interest" is correct. "Pay for" means you give money for something you are buying--goods or services. You would not say "pay for" interest--at least not when you're talking about interest on a loan. Think of it this way: the money you are paying in interest does not buy you anything; you are not buying the interest.
    Thanks, WileyZ. Your explanation cleared up my doubt. :)
     
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