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Economy in Brief

U.S. Budget Deficit Continues to Deepen in FY 2015
by Tom Moeller  April 13, 2015

The Federal Government reported a $52.9 billion budget deficit during March compared to a $36.9 billion deficit during March of 2014. A deficit of $43.0 billion had been expected in the Action Economics Forecast Survey. For the first six months of Fiscal Year 2015 the deficit deepened to $439.5 billion compared to a $413.3 billion deficit in the first six months of FY 2014. Projections from the Congressional Budget Office call for a budget deficit of $486 billion in FY 2015 compared to $483.4 billion last year, then a $455 billion deficit in FY 2016.

The deeper deficit so far this fiscal year versus FY'14 occurred as outlays rose 7.1% y/y, driven by a 21.7% surge in spending on health programs. Medicare spending also rose a quickened 9.4% y/y and Social Security payments gained a stable 4.4%. National defense outlays declined 3.0% y/y and income security payments fell 2.4% y/y with lower unemployment. Spending on education, training & social services increased 23.7% y/y while veterans benefits rose 5.2% y/y. Social Security spending increased a stable 4.4% y/y while net interest spending fell 9.3% y/y due to the shrinking deficit.

Net revenues so far in FY 2015 improved 7.3% y/y as corporate income taxes gained 12.4% y/y. Individual income taxes rose 9.7`% y/y and social insurance taxes gained 3.7% y/y. Excise taxes increased a stable 2.7% y/y.

Haver's basic data on Federal Government outlays and receipts are contained in USECON. Considerable detail is given in the separate GOVFIN database. The Action Economics Forecast Survey numbers are in the AS1REPNA database.

 US Government Finance Mar FY'14 FY'13 FY'12 FY'11
Budget Balance -- $-52.9 bil. $-483.4 bil. $-680.2 bil. $-1,089.2 bil. $-1,296.8 bil.
  As a percent of GDP -- 2.8 4.1 6.8 8.4
% of Total FY'15 YTD
Net Revenues (Y/Y % Change) 100 7.3% 8.9% 13.3% 6.4% 6.5%
  Individual Income Taxes 47 9.7 5.9 16.3 3.7 21.5
  Corporate Income Taxes 10 12.4 17.3 12.9 33.8 -5.4
  Social Insurance Taxes 34 3.7 8.0 12.1 3.2 -5.3
  Excise Taxes 3 2.7 11.1 6.3 9.2 8.2
Net Outlays (Y/Y % Change) 100 7.1 1.4 -2.4 -1.7 4.1
  National Defense 18 -3.0 -4.7 -6.3 -3.9 1.7
  Health 10 21.7 14.2 3.1 -7.0 1.0
  Medicare 14 9.4 2.8 5.5 -2.8 7.5
  Income Security 16 -2.4 -4.3 -1.1 -9.1 -4.1
  Social Security 24 4.4 4.6 5.2 5.8 3.4
  Veterans Benefits & Services 4 5.2 7.7 11.5 -2.0 17.3
  Education, Training, Employment & Social Services 3 23.7 25.9 -21.9 -10.3 -20.6
  Interest 6 -9.3 3.0 0.4 -3.0 15.8
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