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What has the budget deficit been at recently?

*Robert Schroeder, in Market Watch, March 22, 2019

”U.S. Runs Largest Monthly Budget Deficit on Record in February

The numbers: The federal government ran a budget deficit of $234 billion in February, the Treasury Department reported on Friday, the biggest monthly shortfall on record.

It was wider than the $215 billion recorded in February 2018, as spending rose 8% while receipts climbed 7%. Previously, the largest monthly deficit was $231.7 billion in February 2012.

The release of the February figures was later than normal due to the 35-day shutdown that ended Jan. 25.

What happened: Total spending was $401 billion in February while the government took in $167 billion.

Drivers of spending in February included agriculture and transportation programs. The Treasury said individual withheld and payroll taxes climbed 5% in the month. Refunds dropped 10% in February, a month in which the Congressional Budget Office notes the share of total refunds paid varies from year to year.

The big picture: For the fiscal year to date, the budget deficit is up 39% compared to the same period a year ago.

The expanding deficit comes as the Congressional Budget Office is projecting a shortfall of $897 billion for the full fiscal year, or 4.2% of gross domestic product. That’s up from $779 billion in fiscal 2018. The CBO sees trillion-dollar deficits beginning in fiscal 2022.”


*This information is solely an excerpt of a third-party publication and is incomplete. Please subscribe to the referenced publication for the full article. This is not an offer to buy or sell precious metals. Investors should obtain advice based on their own individual circumstances and understand the risk before making any investment decision.

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