Haver Analytics
Haver Analytics
| Sep 13 2023

U.S. Government Runs Unexpected Budget Surplus in August

  • Year-to-date, the deficit remains increased versus FY’22.
  • Revenues continue to decline as individual tax receipts fall.
  • Outlay growth slows with lower health program payments.

The U.S. Treasury Department reported a federal budget surplus of $89.3 billion during August compared to a deficit of $219.6 billion during August of last year. The Action Economics Forecast Survey expected a $229.9 billion deficit for last month. According to Treasury, $319 billion of student loan forgiveness was added back to the budget figures after the plan was blocked by the Supreme Court.

For the first eleven months of the current fiscal year, the federal government ran a budget deficit of $1.52 trillion versus a deficit of $945.7 billion over the same period last fiscal year.   Overall revenues have declined 9.9% y/y so far during FY’23 versus the first eleven months of last fiscal year. Individual income tax receipts fell 18.7% y/y. Corporate tax payments improved 1.7% y/y this fiscal year. Social insurance revenues rose 9.4% y/y but excise taxes fell 9.8% y/y so far in FY’23. Customs duties declined 19.2% y/y.

Federal government outlays have increased 2.6% y/y so far in FY’23. Medicare payments increased 12.1% y/y this fiscal year while Social Security outlays rose 11.0% y/y. Defense spending rose 7.4% y/y. Interest payments strengthened 33.6% y/y so far in FY’23. Offsetting these increases, income security outlays fell 11.2% y/y this fiscal year and health program spending declined 3.0% y/y.

Haver's data on Federal Government receipts & outlays are contained in USECON. The expectations figure is in the AS1REPNA database.

  • Prior to joining Haver Analytics in 2000, Mr. Moeller worked as the Economist at Chancellor Capital Management from 1985 to 1999. There, he developed comprehensive economic forecasts and interpreted economic data for equity and fixed income portfolio managers. Also at Chancellor, Mr. Moeller worked as an equity analyst and was responsible for researching and rating companies in the economically sensitive automobile and housing industries for investment in Chancellor’s equity portfolio.   Prior to joining Chancellor, Mr. Moeller was an Economist at Citibank from 1979 to 1984.   He also analyzed pricing behavior in the metals industry for the Council on Wage and Price Stability in Washington, D.C.   In 1999, Mr. Moeller received the award for most accurate forecast from the Forecasters' Club of New York. From 1990 to 1992 he was President of the New York Association for Business Economists.   Mr. Moeller earned an M.B.A. in Finance from Fordham University, where he graduated in 1987. He holds a Bachelor of Arts in Economics from George Washington University.

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