» Subscribe Today!
More of what you want to know.
The Daily News
X

Forgot your password?
Skip Navigation LinksHome >
VOL. 133 | NO. 52 | Tuesday, March 13, 2018

US Budget Deficit Jumped to $215.2 Billion in February

By MARTIN CRUTSINGER, AP Economics Writer

Print | Front Page | Email this story | Comments ()

WASHINGTON (AP) – The federal government recorded a budget deficit of $215.2 billion in February, up significantly from a year ago as the impact of the GOP tax cuts passed in December begin to surface.

The Treasury Department said Monday that the February deficit was 12.1 percent higher than a year ago, reflecting in part a drop of $5 billion in individual withholding taxes paid last month compared to a year ago. In February, employers started using tax tables that withheld less from paychecks based on the new law.

For the first five months of this budget year, the deficit totals $391 billion, an increase of 11.5 percent from the same period a year ago. President Donald Trump's new budget projects this year's deficit will hit $873 billion, up a sharp 31.3 percent from last year's imbalance of $665.8 billion.

Over the next decade, Trump's budget projects deficits will total $7.1 trillion. That is more than double the $3.2 trillion in deficits over the coming decade that Trump had envisioned in the budget he sent Congress last year. The deficit picture has darkened in part because of the $1.5 trillion in tax cuts Trump pushed through Congress in December.

The administration argues that the tax cuts will pay for themselves over time by boosting growth. But critics contend that this is an overly optimistic view. They argue that deficits will be much worse than Trump is currently forecasting because his budget is using overly optimistic economic forecasts and does not take into account increased government spending which was approved in a January budget deal.

Many private forecasters believe annual deficits will top $1 trillion beginning next year and remain at that level in coming years. The Committee for a Responsible Federal Budget released a report earlier this month projecting that $1 trillion deficits will return next year with the annual deficit hitting $2.4 trillion in 10 years.

For the current budget year, which began Oct. 1, the Treasury report said revenues totaled $1.29 trillion, up 2.4 percent from a year ago, while outlays totaled $1.34 trillion, up 4.2 percent from the same period a year ago. Both the revenues and spending totals are records for the first five months of a budget year.

Copyright 2018 The Associated Press. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.

Sign-Up For Our Free Email Edition
Get the news first with our daily email


 
Blog News, Training & Events
RECORD TOTALS DAY WEEK YEAR
PROPERTY SALES 83 363 9,932
MORTGAGES 91 378 11,692
FORECLOSURE NOTICES 0 39 1,673
BUILDING PERMITS 213 788 21,098
BANKRUPTCIES 50 213 6,650
BUSINESS LICENSES 40 125 3,564
UTILITY CONNECTIONS 30 139 4,122
MARRIAGE LICENSES 12 91 2,270

Weekly Edition

Issues | About

The Memphis News: Business, politics, and the public interest.